This programme specification is aimed at prospective students and represents the most current course structure.
SECTION A: DETAILS OF THE COURSE AND AWARD
|Awarding body:||University of Essex|
|Teaching institution:||University of Essex|
|Department:||Biological Sciences (School of)|
|NQF Level of Qualification:||Honours|
|Full / Part Time||Full-time|
|QAA Benchmark Group:||Biosciences|
| Admission criteria:
if the applicant does not meet the specified criteria, he or she may discuss the application with the Head of Undergraduate or Head of Postgraduate admissions.
|A-levels: 300-260, including BB-CC with A-level Biology, plus GCSE Mathematics C
Scottish Highers: AABB-BBBB including Higher Biology, plus Standard Mathematics grade 3
IB: 32-28 points, including Higher Biology and Standard Mathematics grade 4
Candidates with a non-science background or those offering other qualifications, for example BTEC National Diplomas, should contact Undergraduate Admissions for advice on entry requirements.
SECTION B: PROGRAMME AIMS, OUTCOMES, LEARNING AND ASSESSMENT METHODS
This section provides a concise overview of the programme of study, identifying the aims, learning outcomes and the corresponding methods of learning, teaching and assessment.
Programme: BSC GENETICS
Genetics (C400) is a 3 year programme of study which has the aims of developing in our students: an understanding of living systems, and the varied levels of complexity from molecules to populations. an understanding of biological methods and approaches with an emphasis on genetics and an understanding of the main body of biological knowledge. an ability to analyse current biological and genetical questions and to suggest solutions. a general scientific education including training in handling and interpretation of quantitative information and the ability to plan and carry out desk or laboratory based research under supervision. the key skills of communication, numeracy, ITC use, problem solving, working with others, self-evaluation and self-improvement, and autonomous learning using genetics as a context and focus. the key laboratory, field and workplace skills required for careers in genetics or biology, or other careers that require an integrated understanding of biological processes. a foundation of knowledge, understanding and skills required for further study and research. an awareness of the need for compliance with health, safety and ethical policies in biological work. an appreciation of the need for, and importance of, lifelong learning and personal development planning.
Programme Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of the programme a graduate should demonstrate knowledge and skills as follows:
A1 : Basic physics, maths and chemistry that are relevant to biological sciences|
A2 : The different levels of organisation and complexity, from molecules, through cells, tissues, organs, organisms to populations
A3 : The structural and functional organisation of cells including key cellular, genetic and developmental processes and their regulation
A4 : The organisation of cells into multicellular organisms including cell and organism metabolism and physiology
A5 : Key biological processes at the molecular level with emphasis on genetics
A6 : Appropriate practical scientific methods and approaches: observation, experimentation, modelling; and techniques used in their analysis
A7 : Key genetics issues facing society (e.g. genetic profiling, genetic fingerprinting, GMOs)
B1 : Retrieve, select and collate appropriate biological information|
B2 : Evaluate primary and secondary evidence and arguments
B3 : Analyse and interpret quantitative information in graphs, figures, tables and equations
B4 : Integrate and link information across course components, including material met in different years, from different disciplines and covering different scales of organisation.
B5 : Plan and conduct a research task (including risk assessment and ethical approval where appropriate)
B6 : Present data correctly, choose and apply an appropriate basic statistical test and interpret the output
C1 : Able to carry out basic experiments and sampling programmes in the laboratory and the field, safely and effectively following a written schedule|
C2 : Use appropriate laboratory or field equipment safely and efficiency
C3 : Able to explain the principles and limitations of a range of more advanced genetics based, practical techniques
C4 : Use appropriate techniques to study diversity at different levels (e.g. identification of species using hierarchical keys and sequence databases)
C5 : Able to use appropriate software packages for simulations, modelling, statistical analysis, etc.
Communication: D1 : Able to write clearly in: a) logically argued essays; b) longer reports, including basic scientific papers; c) a variety of other pieces of work for different target audiences; d) e-communications, in particular email. Plan, write and give clear, effective, well-timed oral presentations.|
IT Skills: D2 : (i) Use of current networked PC operating systems for normal file management, (ii) Use a current common word-processing, spreadsheet, web browsing and email packages, (iii) Able to locate and use on-line catalogues and databases
Numeracy: D3 : (i) Use appropriate precision, scales, units, scientific notation, ratios, fractions, powers of 10, logarithms and exponentials. (ii) Use simple algebra and trigonometry and elementary calculus, (simple differentiation and integration). (iii) Use approximations for mental arithmetic estimation and verification.
Problem Solving: D4 : Explore, analyse and find solutions for problems involving reasonably complex information.
Working with Others: D5 : Work effectively as part of a team to collect data and/or to produce reports and presentations
Self Learning: D6 : Study independently, set realistic targets, plan work and time to meet targets within deadlines. Reflect on assessed work, feedback, and progress; Plan, record and document personal development
Learning, Teaching & Assessment Methods or Strategies for the following:
Lectures are the principal method of delivery of A1 to A7. Lectures direct students to textbooks and on-line material (Years 1 to 3), and reviews and research papers (Year 2 and particularly Year 3).
Laboratory and field practicals in Years 1 and 2 complement lectures and develop A1 to A6.
Coursework associated with lecture modules in Years 2 and 3 develops A1 to A7.The research project in Year 3 teaches and develops A6 and also a range of A1-A5 and A7 (depending on project topic).
Team work for A7 is developed in the Issues module (Year 3).
The Skills module and Summer laboratory course in Year 2 teaches and develops A1 to A6.
Seminars with small groups are used in A1 (mathematics and chemistry, Year 1).
A1 to A7 are assessed by:
Multiple Choice Questions (Year 1)
Timed and un-timed essays (Years 2 and 3)
Oral and written practical reports (Years 1 and 2)
Summer laboratory course reports (Year 2)
Exercises in data analysis and interpretation (DAI), (Years 2 and 3)
Unseen written exams: short answer, essay (Years 1 and 2) and questions involving DAI (Years 2 and 3)
The individual Year 3 research project, covering a range of A2 to A7 (depending on project topic) tests understanding in depth and is assessed by an individual written report and an oral presentation.
Team oral and individual written presentations in the Year 3 Issues course are used to assess A7.
Setting of directed learning topics (Years 1 and 2) develops skills in B1, B2 and B4.
B1 and B2 are partly covered by training in exam essay writing in the Year 1 tutorials and further developed by coursework essays (Years 2 and 3)
B2 and B3 are taught by specific inclusion of data analysis in lectures and classes in Years 2 and 3 and through progressive development of DAI coursework in Years 2 and 3.
B1 to B3 and in some cases B4, are developed through analyses and presentation of results of practical work in Years 1 to 3.
B4 is achieved by progressive subject development through the 3 years; the summer laboratory course and the Issues course in Year 3.
B5 is taught via team project work in the summer laboratory course in Year 2 and the Year 3 individual research project and Research Project module.
B6 is taught in Year 1 LSKS module and developed throughout the degree via practical coursework (Years 1 and 2) and in the final year research project.
B1, B2 and B4 are assessed by coursework and exam essays (Years 1 to 3).
B2 and B3 are assessed by coursework and compulsory exam DAI questions (Years 2 and 3), practical reports (Years 1 and 2), summer laboratory course reports (Year 2) and the research project report (Year 3).
B4 is assessed by integrative coursework in the Year 3 Issues module.
B1 to B5 are also assessed in the Year 3 individual research project.
B6 is assessed in Years 1 & 2 practicals and Year 1 LSKS module, and in the Year 3 research project.
Skills C1 to C3 are taught in supervised practicals in Years 1 and 2, and a week long summer laboratory course in Year 2.
Lectures in Years 1 to 3 teach aspects of C1 and C3
Independent project work in research laboratories or in the field in Year 3 also teaches and develops C1 to C3.
As part of C1 to C3, safety is addressed through practical documentation (Years 1 and 2) and developed by students preparing risk assessments for Year 3 research projects.
C5 is addressed through IT and statistics training in Year 1 LSKS, and the use of more specialised software is taught or developed in practicals, the summer laboratory course in Year 2, and the project in Year 3.
C1 is assessed through Year 1 and Year 2 practicals, Year 2 summer laboratory course and the Year 3 research project.
C2 is assessed in some Year 1 and 2 practicals.
C3 is assessed in many practicals in Years 1 and 2 and in theory exams in Years 1 to 3.
C4 is assessed the summer laboratory course and practicals in Year 2.
C5 is assessed in several Year 2 practicals, the Skills module and the final year Research Project module.
Essay writing skills (D1) are taught in the Year 1 tutorials, the LSKS module and developed in all subsequent modules. Additional guidance on Essay and Scientific Paper Format writing is given in the on-line "Academic Skills" WebCT course. Required length of essays and reports grows from Year 1 to 3.
Oral presentation skills (D1) are developed in some practicals and lecture modules, the summer laboratory course (Year 2), and the Research Project module in Year 3.
IT use (D2) is taught in Year 1, particularly in the LSKS module and developed throughout all years. Most coursework from Year 2 onwards must be word-processed, and other computer produced work is required for some practical assignments in Year 2 and in the Year 3 research project, and in the Issues module.
Library, on line catalogue and web skills (D2) are taught in Year 1; developed by provision of module-related material on the Web and through preparation of the research project report (Year 3). Web-based material (D2) is used in several modules including practicals.
D3 is taught in lectures & seminars (Year1) and developed in many subsequent modules (Year 1 to Year 3).
D4 taught through DAI questions in Years 2 and 3, and in some practical classes, and developed in the Issues module, and in supervised project work (Year 3).
Team work (D5) is introduced in some Year 1 practicals and developed in the summer laboratory course (Year 2), in Year 2 practicals and in the Year 3 Issues module.
D6 is addressed in the LSKS module in Year 1, including introduction to PDP, developed through the provision of explicit directed learning tasks (Years 1 and 2), increasing amounts of student managed learning from Year 1 to Year 3, attendance monitoring, rigid deadlines, feedback on assignments and discussions with personal tutor. D6 planning component is developed in the Year 3 Research Project module.
Students are also directed to Key Skills Online, an online learning package which students can undertake at their own pace.
Written skills (D1) are assessed through essays in coursework and exams (Years 1 to 3) and in practical reports (Years 1 and 2) and in the Issues module and the research project report (Year 3).
Oral presentation skills (D1) are assessed in the some Year 2 practicals, in Year 3 Issues Module and in the Year 3 Research Project module.
IT and Maths skills (D2 and D3) are assessed through worksheets and exams in Year 1. Thereafter, practical work, coursework and exam questions throughout the degree course assess numerical skills. Most coursework from Year 2 onwards has to be prepared by computer and submitted on-line.
Problem solving (D4) is assessed in some of the Year 2 practicals, in the Year 3 Issues Module, in DAI questions in Years 2 and 3 exams and in the final year research project.
D5 is assessed through team presentations in some Year 2 practical work and in the Year 3 Issues module.
D6 is assessed by examining directed learning material (Years 1 and 2), by awarding marks for evidence of additional reading and by imposing strict deadlines for coursework assignments.
D6 PDP is assessed in year 1 LSKS through the development of a cv and e-portfolio, and is developed in Year 2 Skills module. The planning component of D6 is assessed in the Year 3 Research Project module.
SECTION C: COURSE STRUCTURE
Please refer to your option list as issued by the department where necessary,
and view module details in the module directory.
Additional notes on module choices:
Students should note that some foundation and first year modules will require assessment (Multiple Choice Exams) on campus in week 15, prior to the start of the spring term. Students should consult the department if they have any queries about the timing of the exams.
|Component No.||Module Code||Module Title||Status in Award|
|01||BS141-4-FY||SCIENTIFIC AND TRANSFERABLE SKILLS FOR BIOSCIENCES||Core|
|02||BS101-4-AU||MOLECULAR CELL BIOLOGY||Core|
|04||BS131-4-AU||BIOCHEMISTRY OF MACROMOLECULES||Core|
|05||BS102-4-SP||GENETICS AND EVOLUTION||Core|
|06||BS113-4-AU||ANIMAL AND PLANT BIOLOGY||Core|
|07||BS132-4-AP||GENERAL AND ORGANIC CHEMISTRY||Core|
|Component No.||Module Code||Module Title||Status in Award|
|01||BS211-5-FY||SKILLS IN BIOMOLECULAR SCIENCE||Compulsory|
|02||BS221-5-SP||MOLECULAR BIOLOGY: GENES, PROTEINS AND DISEASE||Compulsory|
|03||BS LEVEL 5 OPTION FROM GROUP (15 CREDITS)||Optional|
|05||BS LEVEL 5 OPTION FROM GROUP (15 CREDITS)||Optional|
|07||BS LEVEL 5 OPTION FROM GROUP (15 CREDITS)||Optional|
|08||BS LEVEL 5 OPTION FROM GROUP (15 CREDITS)||Optional|
|Component No.||Module Code||Module Title||Status in Award|
|01||BS831-6-FY||RESEARCH PROJECT IN BIOMOLECULAR SCIENCE||Compulsory|
|02||LEVEL 6 OPTION FROM LIST (15 CREDITS)||Optional|
|03||BS304-6-AP||ISSUES IN BIOMOLECULAR SCIENCE||Compulsory|
|04||BS320-6-AU||HUMAN MOLECULAR GENETICS||Compulsory|
|05||LEVEL 6 OPTION FROM LIST (15 CREDITS)||Optional|
|06||LEVEL 6 OPTION FROM LIST (15 CREDITS)||Optional|
SECTION D: RULES OF ASSESSMENT
Rules of assessment are here: http://www2.essex.ac.uk/academic/students/ug/rules.htm
Assessment information for individual modules can be found on the Module Directory at http://www.essex.ac.uk/courses/
External Examiner Information
- Name: Dr James Moir
- Institution: THE UNIVERSITY OF YORK
- Academic Role: Senior Lecturer
The University of Essex Programme Specifications Catalogue is updated annually in April/May. The specifications represent the most current course structures and may be subject to review and change. Should you have any queries about the Catalogue's pages, please contact the Course Records Team, Systems Administration Office, Academic Section; email: crt (non Essex users should add @essex.ac.uk)