APP BIOL 3530WT - Research Practice for Applied Biology III

Waite Campus - Semester 1 - 2017

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code APP BIOL 3530WT
    Course Research Practice for Applied Biology III
    Coordinating Unit School of Agriculture, Food and Wine
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s Waite Campus
    Units 3
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Restrictions Available to Bachelor of Applied Biology & Bachelor of Applied Biology (Hons) students only
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Professor Matthew Gilliham

    Course Timetable

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

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes

    On successful completion of this course students should be able to:

    1. Describe the scientific method and its application

    2. Develop well-formed research questions

    3. Identify and critically evaluate the literature relevant to a research question

    4. Design an experiment to address a research question

    5. Maintain accurate research records and perform data analysis.

    6. Prepare results in the form of a lay report and a scientific paper

    7. Deliver an oral research overview to a lay audience

    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)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    2, 3, 4, 6
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    4, 5, 6, 7
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Tutorials will introduce the key principles of experimental design, analysis and research presentation. A laboratory placement will introduce students to the development of experiments to answer a research question, the implementation of the experiment and data recording analysis. This will form part of a research project as SGDE.


    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
    The course will cover topics on experimental design and analysis as required for careers in applied biology and will also cover communication of scientific literature in a lay format and scientific format. Students will develop skills to design an experiment to answer a research question and then plan and perform the experiment. Students will maintain a laboratory practical book, and learn how to communicate their scientific research project to a lay and scientific audience. Material covered in lectures is reinforced in workshops and executed in the laboratory placement.
    Small Group Discovery Experience
    Students will design, plan and execute a small research project with an academic mentor. The research will be undertaken over a 12-week period one day per week), and will be assessed in the form of a research proposal, laboratory book and written reports. The academic mentor will meet with the students early in the semester to provide the research question and guide experimental design. The academic mentor will then interact closely with the students over the 12 week placement period. 
  • 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
    Hurdle Yes/No
    Learning Outcome
    Research Proposal Formative & Summative


    No 1-4 Week 3
    Supervisor Mark
    Summative 5% No 1-5 Week 12
    Prac Book
    Summative 15% No 1,2,5 Week 12
    Lay Report Summative 10% No 6 Week 9
    Oral presentation Formative & Summative 15% No 7 Draft Week 10; Week 11
    Report in the format of a Scientific Paper
    Formative & Summative 45% No 1-6 Draft Week 7;
    Week 13
    Assessment Detail
    Research Proposal (10%)

    Students will prepare a research proposal of 1500 words covering the background, aim and methods to be used to answer the research question. Details about the experimental design will be included as well as an approximate budget to perform the experiments. This is a two-stage document with an initial assessment being carried out from a draft proforma (2.5%), then the full proposal (7.5%) 2 weeks later.

    Laboratory Book (15%)

    An electronic Lab Book (or paper lab book if preferred by the placement laboratory) will be kept by the student throughout the 12 week placement period and students will be assessed on the accurate and detailed maintenance of the lab book. Weekly reports will also be forwarded to the course co-ordinator summarising progress (7.5%)

    Research Placement Supervisor Assessment (5%)

    The supervisor of the laboratory placement project will assess the individual student’s competencies in standard laboratory methodologies and execution of the research project.

    Lay Report (10%)

    Students will prepare a 200 word lay report summarising their research question and experimental results as would be written for a media report.

    3MT Oral presentation (15%)

    3MT style presentation of research (12.5%. Initial talk will be given feedback on where they could improve (2.5%).

    Scientific Paper (45%)

    Each student will report their findings from the 10 week placement in the format of a 3000 word paper. A draft (10%) will be submitted after the mid-semester break to provide students with feedback.

    If an extension is not applied for, or not granted then a penalty for late submission will apply. A penalty of 10% of the value of the assignment for each calendar day that the assignment is late (i.e. weekends count as 2 days), up to a maximum of 50% of the available marks will be applied. This means that an assignment that is 5 days late or more without an approved extension can only receive a maximum of 50% of the marks available for that assignment.

    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

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