Current Issues in Bioscience

Module summary

Module code: BIOL1054
Level: 7
Credits: 15
School: Engineering and Science
Department: Science
Module Coordinator(s): ENG & SCI TBA


Introduction and rationale

This course will form part of the newly-developed Integrated Master’s programme in Biology (the MBiol). Delivered at Level 7, it will focus on building students’ skills in critical appraisal of current topics of interest in Biosicence.


To alert students to selected recent developments in biosciences and to the multi-disciplinary nature of bioscience;
To evaluate the implications of recent developments / controversies;
To enhance critical and analytical approaches to bioscientific research and investigation .

Learning outcomes

Critically discuss selected areas of applied biology research
Critically discuss issues in applied biology
Appraise the validity and applicability of new research in this area
Evaluate the potential implication of biological research for individuals/ groups and future research.

Indicative content

A range of examples will be selected before the course commences. Suitable examples will be taken from current and emerging issues in the area of bioscientific research. Typical examples may include:

Recent developments in the use of genetic manipulation in life sciences;
Genetic engineering in medicine and / or agriculture;
Gene therapy;
Herbicide and pesticide use and consequences for health;
Drug resistance in micro-organisms;
Emerging Diseases;
Brain growth and development;
Nitric oxide and the central nervous system.

Teaching and learning activity

The course will consist of a series of keynote lectures, together with tutorials and workshops that will guide students in their learning. Where appropriate, invited speakers will contribute to the keynote lecture series. Students will be expected to extend and supplement this material by using appropriate resources, in which they will be guided by tutors. Areas of current research focus will be explained in the lectures and student centred learning will establish an in-depth understanding of the topics. Tutorial support will be provided in relevant areas.


Grading Mode numeric
Weighting % 50
LOs- 1,3
Pass Mark 50% overall
Word Length 2,000 – 2,500 excluding references
Outline Details: A critical case study / essay, based on ‘key words’ that will be provided at the start of the course. A scheduled seminar / workshop will provide guidance for this coursework.

Seen Examination
Weighting % - 50%
Pass Mark - 50%
Word Length - 2Hours
LOs - 2
Outline Details : A seen examination