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 deals with the functional role of the clinical laboratory in the diagnosis of infectious diseases. The importance of normal microbiological flora is stressed early, as is the process of specimen collection. The lecture series then covers a variety of different infections and the laboratory processes involved in their diagnosis. There is also a section on antimicrobial susceptibility testing and the monitoring of antibiotic levels. The practical component of the unit closely follows the lecture material and real specimens are used so that real problems are encountered. In the second half of the semester, individual students work on their own small practical project in addition to the practical work undertaken by the group. Students are also required to complete two essays on topics related to diagnostic microbiology.

8 points

Students gain an understanding of the theory and diagnosis of microbial infection. They also gain skills in a range of laboratory techniques.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) examinations (50 per cent) and (2) laboratories, practicals and assignments (50 per cent). 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)
Professor Thomas Riley
Unit rules
see the unit coordinator
Contact hours
lectures: 1 hour per week
labs: 2 hours per week
  • 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.