Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

Click on an offering mode for more details.

Unit Overview


This unit focuses on the central role of proteins in controlling or affecting cell function and expands on information covered in BIOC2001 Biochemistry and Molecular Biology of the Cell. Cells are complex systems containing many thousands of small molecules and larger macromolecules. This complexity enables cells to divide, grow and respond to external changes, and allows specialised cells of multicellular organisms to perform their particular functions. In this unit, the focus is on how these cellular functions are controlled and regulated by intracellular signals and extracellular signals. Understanding how cells regulate their activities allows insight into how an organism responds to and copes with its environment, nutrients and/or diet, infection and disease. The content of the unit is divided into five major themes: (1) metabolic pathways; (2) organelles and energy production; (3) post-translational signal transduction pathways; (4) transcriptional signal transduction pathways; and (5) the cell cycle—regulation and cancer. Workshops and laboratories are interactive and designed to reinforce theory concepts from supplied learning materials. Techniques and technologies used in modern biological laboratories are introduced and train students in biological laboratory skills.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 core unit in the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; Molecular Life Sciences; Biochemistry of Nutrition major sequences
  • Level 2 elective

Students are able to (1) acquire and demonstrate knowledge in the role of proteins in cell function; (2) recognise the organising principle of metabolic pathways is used to understand the complexity of cells containing many thousands of small molecules and macromolecules; (3) describe how extracellular signals and intracellular signals cause a coordinated response by metabolic pathways; (4) explain the molecular mechanisms by which cells receive and process signals received from the external environment; (5) describe how various signals from outside and inside the cell contribute to the regulation of the cell cycle and how defects in these pathways can lead to cancer; and (6) demonstrate skills in current techniques used in biochemical research, problem solving, critical thinking, experimental design and data analysis.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) an examination; (2) continuous assessment of laboratory component (quizzes, reports); and (3) online theory themed quizzes. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Alyssa Van Dreumel and Dr Peter Arthur
Unit rules
Enrolment in
Major(s) MJD-BCNDM Biochemistry of Nutrition
or Major(s) MJD-MLSDM Molecular Life Sciences
or Major(s) MJD-BCHMB Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
and Successful completion of two Unit(s)
SCIE1106 Molecular Biology of the Cell
or SCIX1106 Molecular Biology of the Cell
and BIOC1001 Introductory Cellular Biochemistry
CHEM1002 Chemistry—Structure and Reactivity
or CHEX1002 Chemistry Structure and Reactivity
Successful completion of
Or Enrolment in
SCIE1106 Molecular Biology of the Cell
Or SCIX1106 Molecular Biology of the Cell
Unit(s) BIOC2202 Biochemical Regulation of Cell Function
Advisable prior study
BIOC2001 Biochemistry and Molecular Biology of the Cell
Contact hours
Workshops: 1 hour per week
Laboratories: 3 hours per week, as per timetable
BIOC2002 has a compulsory face to face laboratory component, which will need to be completed (at a later date) before a final grade can be awarded for the unit, if the unit is completed in an online mode.
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.