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


The development of novel methods and technologies serves as a major catalyst for the rapidly expanding field of Synthetic Biology. In particular, the rigorous application of engineering principles, involving standardisation, modularisation and computational modelling of biological systems has transformed the scale and speed at which we can now engineer living cells with novel functionalities. Examples include the development of standardised chassis organisms, cell-free expression systems, synthetic genetic components and DNA assembly techniques that enable high-throughput engineering of new-to-nature proteins, gene regulatory logic circuits, RNA switches, metabolic pathways and even entire synthetic chromosomes. SCIE5509 focuses on the theory behind state-of-the art methodologies and technologies in Synthetic Biology and encourages a level of understanding that stimulates critical thinking of new applications in the fields of molecular biology and biotechnology.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face

Students are able to (1) demonstrate an understanding of state-of-the-art technologies in the field of Synthetic Biology; (2) critically evaluate the tools and techniques currently used in Synthetic Biology applications; and (3) apply current Synthetic Biology concepts to design and create novel technologies.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) online quizzes; (2) oral presentations; and (3) poster presentation. 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 Georg Fritz
Unit rules
Enrolment in
71580 Master of Biotechnology (ID 389)
  • 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.