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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Deanery of Biomedical Sciences : Biomedical Sciences

Undergraduate Course: Critical Analysis Skills in Biomedical Sciences (BIME10039)

Course Outline
SchoolDeanery of Biomedical Sciences CollegeCollege of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryCritical evaluation of published primary research articles, and skill in clear and accurate scientific communication are two explicitly identified learning objectives of the Biomedical Sciences Honours BSc Programme. These will be assessed through a Critical Analysis Task in which students will demonstrate their ability to interrogate research papers in depth by critically evaluating an original published research paper (i.e. not a review) relating to the topic of their Project.
Course description To ensure that appropriate papers are chosen, each student is initially required to select two potential papers and to send these to their project supervisor, who will then decide which of these two papers should be used (to prevent selection of an inappropriate paper e.g. because it is far too complex, or because it is too trivial, lacks data, etc). Each student will provide an independent report (1000 words max.) of that published paper for assessment, according to a specified format.

Critical evaluation of papers depends in part on being able to understand enough of statistical techniques to make a reasonable judgement about what conclusions may be legitimately drawn from data. Teaching sessions on statistics/data analysis will therefore be held to help develop/consolidate understanding of these issues.

A tutorial session will focus on how to construct a balanced evaluation of a specific example paper.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2022/23, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  58
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Lecture Hours 2, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 2, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 1, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 93 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 100% in-course assessment - 1000 word critique of a primary research paper in the area of the student's project (see Course Description for further details)
Feedback Both the mark and markers comments for this in-course component will be made available to provide feedback as soon as practicable (we aim to achieve this prior to the Project dissertation hand-in date).
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrating an ability to use knowledge to critically analyse hypotheses and arguments
  2. Writing about medical science issues in an accurate, clear and well-organised manner.
  3. Demonstrating an ability to evaluate and integrate information from several sources
Reading List
Lecturers/ Seminar presenters may give out reading lists related to their topics.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Course organiserDr Rory Mitchell
Course secretaryMr Christopher French
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