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


Students are informed of, and practise, laboratory safety and risk assessment, library and database searching, the use of EndNote, professional scientific writing skills, and the ethics of science. This knowledge equips them with the tools to undertake experimental research, and prepare a literature review and project proposal of their research topic. Students are exposed to the practical tools and professional standards needed to develop a research project. They are trained in proper laboratory practice to ensure a safe workplace, and to recognise risks as insignificant or significant. The importance of control procedures for activities deemed of significant risk are stressed. The handling of hazardous materials, waste disposal, emergency procedures and reporting mechanisms are discussed. Students acquire the ability to search databases of scientific literature to review and synthesise previous work and methodologies in the particular discipline or field of study relevant to their research project, and learn to store and manage this information. They also realise the current state of the art of a field of study by gaining skills in querying public repositories of scientific data that have been experimentally generated, and extracting data relevant to the research project. Students develop professional scientific writing skills, and are made aware of ethical issues in science, including acceptable scientific practice, standards and behaviour.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 4 elective
  • Honours core unit in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; Chemistry; Genetics [Bachelor of Science (Honours)]

Students are able to (1) define and recognise proper laboratory practice, including the handling of hazardous materials, emergency procedures, waste disposal and reporting procedures; (2) define and recognise significant and insignificant risks, and controls of the former; (3) search databases of scientific literature to review and synthesise previous work and methodologies in the particular discipline or field of study relevant to the research project; (4) search public repositories and extract data relevant to the research project; (5) store and manage information gained from database searches; (6) write as a professional scientist; and (7) define and carry out acceptable scientific practice, standards and behaviour.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) proposal and (2) project literature review. 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 Gavin Flematti
Unit rules
Successful completion of
Major(s) chemistry
or Major(s) biochemistry and molecular biology
or Major(s) Genetics or equivalent
Contact hours
lectures and tutorials: 12 hours in modular format, beginning in week 1. Students meet with their project supervisors throughout the semester to define the content of the literature review and project proposal.
  • 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.