IMED1002 The Facts of Life

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 1 core unit in the Medical Sciences; Integrated Medical Sciences and Clinical Practice major sequences
  • The area of knowledge for this unit is Life and Health Sciences
  • Category B broadening unit for students
This unit is designed to provide students with an understanding of basic chemistry, biochemistry, cell biology, genetics and human heredity.
Students are able to (1) understand basic chemistry of atoms, molecules and chemical bonds; (2) understand the role of water, acid/base and buffers in biological systems; (3) define macromolecule structure and function; (4) explain the structure and function of proteins and their roles in cellular processes; (5) explain the concept and structure of a gene and the relationship between genes, chromosomes and DNA; (6) describe the central dogma and all stages in protein synthesis and control of gene expression; (7) list the types of eukaryotic RNA and their functions; (8) explain basic concepts of mutations and the relationship to protein function; (9) explain the principles of inheritance of traits and relationship to chromosomes and genes; (10) identify basic characteristics of the eukaryotic cell cycle and mitosis; (11) explain the process of meiosis and the overall significance of meiosis for reproduction and genetic variation; (12) describe the genetic basis of some common human genetic disorders; (13) understand the process and uses of PCR for diagnostics; and (14) describe and explain basic techniques used to study molecules and cells.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) final examination; (2) in-semester test; and (3) practical session and self-directed learning assessments. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a bachelor's pass degree student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 overall and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Elizabeth Quail
Unit rules
enrolment in the Medical Sciences (MEDSC) major,
Integrated Medical Science and Clinical Practice (IMSCP) major,
Vision Science (VISSC) major.
Approved quota: 400—a place in the unit is determined on a first-come, first-served basis. Selection is based on time of enrolment with first places given to students enrolled in this major as a degree-specific and second to students enrolled as a second major. Any remaining places are given to those students according to when they enrol until all places are filled.
Contact hours
lectures: 3 hours per week; practical sessions: 15 hours per semester
Unit Outline
Semester 1-2020 [SEM-1-2020]
  • 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.
  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available via the Booktopia Textbook Finder, which has the functionality to search by course code, course, ISBN and title, and may also be posted or available at the appropriate school's administrative offices. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.