This major provides students with a detailed understanding of Microbiology and Immunology. It combines the study of infectious microbial agents, including opportunities to study bacteria, viruses and parasites, with the study of the host’s immune responses, which are most often beneficial but sometimes detrimental to the host. It describes how these disciplines are studied and their application to a range of areas in the biomedical sciences. The major opens up careers in infectious disease, diagnostics, molecular biology, biotechnology, vaccinology, antimicrobial chemotherapeutics, biosafety and regulation, as well as post-graduate research into infectious agents, their genes and mechanisms of disease together with the various beneficial and harmful aspects of the immune system. It provides a basis for further study into medicine and other paramedical disciplines.
Students intending to undertake this major should be aware that it requires successful completion of a practical-based subject in which products and reagents derived from animals are used.
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of this major, students should be able to demonstrate:
- Broad knowledge of the diverse range of infectious microbial agents, and the ways in which they interact with their hosts, the environment and each other
- Ability to describe and explain the molecular basis of various infectious microbial agents to cause disease, together with strategies to interrupt these processes, including the development of new anti-microbial agents and vaccines
- Understanding of the fundamental concepts of microbial agent replication and transmission
- Understanding of the principles, procedures and techniques involved in the identification and characterisation of microbial agents
- Understanding of infectious disease in local and global contexts
- Broad knowledge of the immune system and other mechanisms that defend the body
- Understanding of strategies to modulate immune responses to improve human health
- Understanding of the principles and procedures involved in isolating and characterising immune cells and their function
- Expertise in the selection and application of practical and/or theoretical techniques or tools in order to conduct an investigation
- Skills in accurate recording of experimental data, critical analysis and evaluation of scientific data to form evidence-based conclusions
- Effective communication of scientific ideas and findings, in both oral and written form
- Understanding of safe scientific work practices in the laboratory, including personal and collective laboratory safety
- High level of professional integrity, and adherence to ethical requirements regarding plagiarism and accurate data reporting
- Independent and self-directed learning, and effective management of time and priorities
- Capacity to work in groups on activities, both within and outside of the Laboratory.
Last updated: 12 November 2022