BIOCHEM 2504 - Biochem II (Mol Biol): Molecular and Cell Biology

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2014

BIOCHEM 2504 uses the knowledge and understanding gained in the prerequisite level 1 courses (see below) to provide students with an appreciation and an understanding of key biochemistry and molecular biology concepts. Consequently the topics covered include DNA structure, synthesis and repair, RNA and protein synthesis, and the control of gene expression, recombinant DNA technology, cell structure and organisation and signal transduction pathways. The course combines lectures, special tutorial sessions that reinforce the lecture content and research aspects in molecular biology, and the practicals offered by the school of Molecular and Biomedical Science to complement this material. This practical component draws from the MBS Practical series: Prac A, Prac B and Prac C. Refer to Current Students Online information at for information about enrolling in these practicals.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code BIOCHEM 2504
    Course Biochem II (Mol Biol): Molecular and Cell Biology
    Coordinating Unit School of Molecular and Biomedical Sci(Inactive)
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 8 hours per week
    Prerequisites CHEM 1100 & CHEM 1200 or CHEM 1101 & CHEM 1201, BIOLOGY 1101 & BIOLOGY 1201 or BIOLOGY 1202
    Incompatible BIOCHEM 2500 & BIOCHEM 2502
    Restrictions Available to B Sc (Molecular Biology) students only
    Assessment Final exam, written tests, written assessments for practicals within the Prac ABC system and online tests of multiple choice questions
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Ms Lynn Rogers

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1 Understand aspects of:           
    DNA structure, synthesis and repair           
    RNA and protein synthesis           
    The control of gene expression           
    Cell structure and organisation           
    Signal transduction pathways
    2 Understandind hypothesis-based experimental design
    3 Plan and safely performfundamental techniques in molecular and cellular biology
    4 Interpret, analyse and effectively communicate experimental data and conclusions of scientific research
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 1. 2, 3, 4
    The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 1, 2, 3, 4
    An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 1, 2, 3, 4
    Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 3, 4
    A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 1, 2, 3, 4
    A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 1, 2, 3, 4
    A commitment to the highest standards of professional endeavour and the ability to take a leadership role in the community. 1, 2, 3, 4
    An awareness of ethical, social and cultural issues within a global context and their importance in the exercise of professional skills and responsibilities. 3, 4
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Biochemistry, a Short Course, 2nd Edition
    Tymoczko J., Berg J., & Stryer L.

    Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, 4th EditionElliott W.H. & Elliott D.C.

    For Practicals
    Laboratory coat and closed shoes on practical days
    Online Learning
    MyUni is an essential resource for this course but it is essential for students to login regularly to check on important course-related announcements and material.

    Students will find the following on MyUni:

    All lectures are recorded

    All lecture notes

    Tutorial questions

    Past examinations

    The Discussion Board which is monitored daily

    Formative and Summative MCQs

    Lynn's Swot Activities to help with some of the more difficult concepts in the course
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    An average of three lectures per week which are recorded for MyUni

    An average of one tutorial per week although some weeks may be tutorial-free because the tutorials are held as "Lectorials": tutorial sessions in a large class format where students are encouraged to ask questions

    An average of 20 hours per semester

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    A student enrolled in a 3 unit course, such as this, should expect to spend, on average 12 hours per week on the studies required. This includes both the formal contact time required to the course (e.g., lectures and practicals), as well as non-contact time (e.g., reading and revision).
    Learning Activities Summary
    Weeks 1-2
    DNA Structure, Replication and Repair

    Weeks 3-4
    Transcription and Gene Expression in prokaryotes and eukaryotes

    Weeks 5-6
    Review and revision of new concepts
    How to answer exam questions

    Weeks 7-8
    The genetic code
    Translation and control in prokaryotes and eukaryotes

    Week 9

    Week 10
    Protein sorting and delivery

    Weeks 11-12
    Concepts of Cell signalling
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Task Type Percentage of total assessment for grading purposes
    Yes or No
    Learning Outcome
    Written test Formative & Summative


    No 1-4
    Online tests Formative & Summative 5% No 1-4
    Major written test Formative & Summative 10% No 1-4
    Practical assessments Formative & Summative 20% No 1-4
    Final exam Summative 50% No 1-4
    Assessment Detail

    Online tests of multiple choice questions:

    FIVE formative tests to help ensure understanding of lecture material and to encourage further reading of course material. Feedback and correct answers are provided IMMEDIATELY a question is answered. Students are notified as each test is released and given one week to organise their time to complete the test. There are 10 questions in each test and students are given one hour to complete each test. Each test is attempted over a 6-7 day period in the student’s own time and can only be attempted once but that students have an opportunity to do a similar test to improve their grade. These tests are initially formative because students can retake each test if they wish to improve their marks so they NOW become summative.

    Written Tests:

    Three written tests (each worth 5%) are also to ensure understanding of the content presented during the semester. These are usually in weeks 4, 7, and 12 during tutorial and or lecture sessions (timetable permitting) and are 20-30 minutes in duration. Students receive feedback within a week. This verbal feedback is done either during the tutorials or during a specified lecture (as the timetable permits). The students are also given written feedback in the form of examples of excellent (anonymous) answers written by peer students in the class. These are put up on MyUni and remain accessible for all students as many do not attend lectures, or tutorials and some may not even turn up for the tests.

    The first test provides the students with a benchmark for communicating scientific information effectively in writing. Subsequent summative tests are given as the semester progresses to ensure summative knowledge of course material.

    Major written Test:

    This test is 50-60 minutes in duration and is held during a lecture session in the usual lecture theatre venue. Feedback is provided as above and within one week.


    Four written practical assessments per semester handed in by the students are promptly assessed to provide feedback.. Details vary depending on which practical students enrol into in the prac ABC system.

    Final written Examination:

    A 2.5 hour exam covering lecture and tutorial material is held during the June/July examination period.


    No information currently available.

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

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