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Unit information: Core Skills in 2016/17

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Unit name Core Skills
Unit code BIOC30603
Credit points 40
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Professor. Kelly Moule
Open unit status Not open
Pre-requisites

BIOC20002 and BIOC20001

Co-requisites

Advanced Cell Biology BIOC30601 The Dynamic Proteome BIOC30604 Cellular Information BIOC30602 Advanced Options in Biochemistry BIOC30600

School/department School of Biochemistry
Faculty Faculty of Life Sciences

Description

Students will undertake two pieces of independent project work on this unit. The Practical Project will consist of a 24 day supervised research project normally undertaken in one of the research labs in the School. Occasionally students may undertake a dry computer-based project in place of a wet lab project. The Literary Project involves a review of a particular topic using the current scientific literature. A choice of projects will be available. Students will express a preference and projects will be allocated based on this whenever possible. Data analysis skills and critical ability will be tested in the Data Handling and Literature Comprehension examinations.

Aims:

The unit aims to develop key research and analytical skills in biochemistry. Students will gain experience of biochemical research and gain an understanding of scientific enquiry through project work.

Intended learning outcomes

  • Scientific experimental design and execution
  • Research and analytical skills
  • The ability to critically evaluate scientific data and literature and appraise competing theories
  • An in-depth knowledge and understanding of the topics being studied and an ability to keep abreast with recent developments in the field.
  • Problem solving skills
  • Laboratory technical skills and/or IT skills
  • Scientific report writing
  • Self-directed study skills
  • Oral scientific presentation skills

Teaching details

Practical projects normally involve supervised laboratory and/or computer-based work.

Literary projects are largely self-directed but also involve feedback from supervisors on a limited number of drafts. Data analysis skills are developed through workshop sessions and through the practical project work.

Students will be given the opportunity to gain formative feedback on their performance in “mock” Data Handling and Literature Comprehension exams.

Assessment Details

Practical Project (40%) Maximum word count is 5,500 for the practical project. The project is marked independently by the project supervisor and a second marker. The mark from the supervisor counts 60% towards the overall project mark. The mark from the second marker accounts for 40% of the overall project mark. The viva is conducted in the presence of another member of staff. Weightings are as follows:

Performance in lab (mark from project supervisor): 20%

Project report (mark from project supervisor): 40%

Project report (mark from 2nd marker): 32%

Viva (2nd marker): 8%

Literary Project (25%) Maximum word count is 5,500 for the literary project. The project is marked independently by the project supervisor and a second marker. The mark awarded by the supervisor counts 50% towards the overall project mark. The mark awarded by the second marker counts 50% towards the overall project mark.

Explicit marking schemes are used by markers for both projects.

Data Handling exam (20%) 3 hour unseen written examination

Literature Comprehension exam (15%) 3 hour unseen written examination

Reading and References

Reviews and primary articles from the current scientific literature.

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