MICR5836 Public and Environmental Health Microbiology

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth), QEII Medical CentreFace to face
This unit provides students with an introduction to the key infectious agents which may pose a public or environmental health threat to the community. The unit covers surveillance and notifiable disease, water and air quality, food processing and micro-organisms from soil/air/food/water sources involved in outbreaks of disease. The laboratory methods introduce students to the detection of microbes in food processing. Guest lecturers from the Departments of Health and Water present a contemporary view of public health infectious disease in Western Australia. A unique feature of the unit is the involvement of PathWest, which has a strong reputation in public and environmental health microbiology.
Students are able to (1) demonstrate familiarity with areas of knowledge basic to public health microbiology (surveillance, epidemiology, prevention); (2) the sources of infectious diseases (air, water, food, sexually transmitted disease); (3) demonstrate familiarity with the principles governing air, water and food quality; (4) the methods for detection of pathogens and toxins in the air, food and water enviroments; (5) demonstrate familiarity with the delivery of public health measures to the community including hospitals and remote areas; and (6) demonstrate familiarity with the application of preventative measures to control infectious disease in diverse environmental and clinical settings.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) two multiple-choice examinations (15 per cent each); (2) a report (20 per cent); and (3) a two-hour end-of-semester examination (50 per cent). Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is available for those students who obtain a mark of 45 to 49 inclusive in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Manfred Beilharz
Unit rules
enrolment in the Graduate Diploma in Infectious Diseases;
Master of Infectious Diseases
Advisable prior study:
MICR5829 Foundations of Infectious Diseases; MICR5842 Principles of Infection and Immunity; PUBH8750 Epidemiology I; MICR5830 Principles of Mycology and Parasitology
Contact hours
lectures: 2 hours per week; practical classes/assignments: 3 hours per week

Burlage, Robert S., ed. Principles of Public Health Microbiology: Jones and Bartlett Learning 2012

  • 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 at the University Co-operative Bookshop (from early January) and appropriate administrative offices for students to consult. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.