Undergraduate Course: The Microbial World 2 (BILG08018)
|School||School of Biological Sciences
||College||College of Science and Engineering
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 8 (Year 2 Undergraduate)
||Availability||Available to all students
|Summary||A solid foundation in microbiology is essential for understanding how life arose on the planet and how global processes operate to sustain life. By using knowledge of microbial form and function we are also able to harness the power of microbes to solve industrial and environmental problems. This course will extend knowledge gained in courses, such as Origin and Diversity of Life and The Green Planet, to promote an understanding of core concepts in microbial growth and form with an emphasis on diversity of biochemical function and metabolism. The importance of fundamental biochemical and genetic principles underpinning microbial life will be explored in the context of environmental, plant and industrial processes.
Microbes rule the world! ┐or at least influence it in major ways. A solid foundation in microbiology is essential for understanding how life arose on the planet and how global processes operate to sustain life. By using knowledge of microbial form and function we are also able to harness the power of microbes to solve industrial and environmental problems. This course will extend knowledge gained in Origin and Diversity of Life and Molecules, Genes and Cells to promote an understanding of core concepts in microbial growth and form, with an emphasis on diversity of function.
The course covers material that all biologists should know. It explores microbes, their major properties, and how they influence processes, such as global warming, acid rain, and nutrient cycling in the world. It examines how microbes interact with plants to influence crop production and spoilage, or affect the safety of the food we eat. The course also explores how microbes are exploited in the biotechnology industry, as well as how we might make new products in the future, using cutting edge technology, such as synthetic biology.
Course Structure and associated programmes:
A pass in The Microbial World 2 is required for entry into Molecular Microbiology 3, for Biotechnology 3, or for the Biotechnology Honours programme.
The Microbial World 2 provides valuable foundational material to support other third year courses, such as Molecular Genetics 3, Genomes & Genomics 3, Molecular Cell Biology 3, and Applied Plant Biology 3. Thus, it is recommended for Honours programmes in Molecular Genetics, Genetics, Molecular Biology, Cell Biology and Plant Science.
The course will consist of lectures, practicals, and tutorials. Much of the assessment will be undertaken during the course, with a lesser weighting on the degree exam. In this course the degree exam will be ┐optional┐ for those who attend all the practicals and tutorials, and who score at least 60% in each of the assessed items
We aim to provide the following skill-base: Good microbial practice and bacterial characterisation, knowledge and understanding of the subject matter, report writing, and analytical skills, including data analysis, literature exploration and appraisal. The course will be assessed as follows:
ICA (70%) = Practical report. (25%); Two Question Mark Perception data handling tests (15% each); Literature comprehension/data analysis (15%)
Degree Exam (30%)
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
|| Students MUST have passed:
Origin and Diversity of Life 1 (BILG08001) AND
Molecules, Genes and Cells 1 (BILG08015)
||Other requirements|| Students must attend at least 2 practical sessions to be awarded credits for this course. Rules for meeting the learning outcomes and passing the course are outlined in the course manual. Note that this course has a practical session on the first day of semester 2
Information for Visiting Students
|Pre-requisites||Equivalent of the courses listed above.
|High Demand Course?
Course Delivery Information
|Academic year 2019/20, Available to all students (SV1)
|Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info)
Lecture Hours 12,
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
|Assessment (Further Info)
|Additional Information (Assessment)
||Practical report. (25%)
Two Question Mark Perception data handling tests. (15% each)
Literature comprehension/data analysis. (15%)
Degree exam. (30%)
||Exam Feedback Sessions
||Hours & Minutes
|Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)||The Microbial World 2||2:00|
|Resit Exam Diet (August)||The Microbial World 2||2:00|
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- To be able to describe microbial diversity in relation to habitat
- Understanding of microbial differentiation and major evolutionary drivers
- To understand and be able to describe key principles of how microorganisms respond to abiotic and biotic chemico-physical environments
- Awareness of the major use of microorganisms and their products in current and emerging biotechnological applications
- To understand the principles and practicalities of microbial isolation
|Brock Biology of Microorganisms - Michael T. Madigan and John M. Martinko (2014)|
Microbiology: An Evolving Science - Joan Slonczewski, John Foster (2013)
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
|Keywords||Microbial Microbiology Biochemistry Metabolism Ecology Microbes Biotechnology
|Course organiser||Prof Maurice Gallagher
Tel: (0131 6)50 5409
|Course secretary||Mrs Carolyn Wilson
Tel: (0131 6)50 8651