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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Biological Sciences : Biology

Undergraduate Course: Molecular Genetics 3 (BILG09002)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Biological Sciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 9 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryA core course in molecular genetics. The course covers chromosome structure and organisation; gene expression and RNA processing in prokaryotes and eukaryotes; genetic engineering; genetic stability and instability; transposable elements and DNA rearrangements; genetic analysis; mouse genetics and transgenesis. The lectures are complemented by tutorials and by practical sessions that provide hands-on experience of genetical and molecular genetical manipulations.
Course description Understanding the molecular nature of the genetic material has revolutionised the study of biology. Molecular Genetics 3 is a course designed to provide the student with knowledge and understanding of this field and is recommended for entry into many senior Honours courses.

The different sections of the course cover:
regulation of gene expression and RNA processing
chromosome structure, organisation and segregation
genetic engineering
genetic stability and instability
mouse genetics and transgenesis

The lectures are complemented by tutorials and by practical sessions that provide hands-on experience of genetic analysis and molecular manipulations. Assessment is by a combination of assessed course essay, a data handling session, PeerWise and a degree exam.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Genes and Gene Action 2 (BILG08003)
It is RECOMMENDED that students have passed The Dynamic Cell 2 (BILG08009)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs Lab coats will be supplied but students should provide a notebook and marker pen.
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesEquivalent of the courses listed above
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2016/17, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 21, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 16, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 26, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 1, Summative Assessment Hours 4, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 128 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 50 %, Coursework 30 %, Practical Exam 20 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Students are required to obtain an aggregate mark of 40% based on the weighting of marks for one examination and two in-course components of assessment.


Paper 1. Written paper: a two-hour written examination in December (week 12) will contribute 50% of the final mark.

In-course components of assessment:

1. Essay: The essay should not be more than 2500 words and will be chosen from a list of nine titles provided in week 1. The essay should be handed in by the beginning of week 6 and will contribute 30% of the final mark.

2. Data handling session: A 2hr problem solving session will be undertaken in week 10, on the 23rd November from 1000-1200. This will be used to test the students ability to interpret and analyse scientific data. The data-handling session will contribute 20% of the final mark.
Feedback Not entered
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S1 (December)Molecular Genetics 32:00
Resit Exam Diet (August)2:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Be able to explain chromosome structure, organisation and segregation, and the major processes involved in the regulation of gene expression.
  2. Be able to explain the mechanisms involved in genetic recombination and transposition, and to understand their importance in maintaining and disrupting genome stability and in genome modification.
  3. Demonstrate an ability to critically analyse molecular genetic data.
  4. Demonstrate an ability to research and compose an essay on a defined scientific topic in molecular genetics.
  5. Be able to carry out and interpret laboratory experiments in molecular genetics.
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Research and enquiry

Personal and intellectual autonomy


Personal effectiveness

Course organiserProf David Leach
Tel: (0131 6)50 5373/5372
Course secretaryMrs Carolyn Wilson
Tel: (0131 6)50 8651
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