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.

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Unit Overview


This unit reinforces basic concepts in molecular biology and cellular biology

and will provide a framework for the understanding of more complex diagnostic modalities covered in subsequent units. Emphasis will be on the basic science underpinning molecular dysfunction. The precepts will be expanded to cover the molecular mechanisms and tools that can be used for diagnostic and prognostic assessment.

Topics will include DNA, RNA, protein structure in healthy humans, chromosome structure, function and abnormalities, regulation of gene expression in health and disease.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 elective

Students are able to (1) demonstrate an understanding of DNA and chromosome structure and function; (2) demonstrate an understanding of basic gene regulation and structure; (3) describe the implications of altered gene structure; (4) demonstrate an understanding of basic cellular processes and dysfunction; (5) describe examples of metholodologies used in molecular medicine; (6) demonstrate analytical skills in the interpretation of data; (7) demonstrate skills in accessing informatic databases; and (8) demonstrate an understanding of genetic and cellular information related to cellular and molecular dysfunction.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) final examination; (2) continual assessment test; and (3) practical sessions. 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 Amber Boyatzis
Unit rules
SCIE1106 Molecular Biology of the Cell
or SCIX1106 Molecular Biology of the Cell
IMED1001 Form and Function
and IMED1002 The Facts of Life
Contact hours
lectures: 2 hours
practicals or tutorials: 3 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.