Page 149 - 00012 TCD Undergraduate Courses 2012

Basic HTML Version

Engineering, Mathematics and Science
Functional biology – the
comparative physiology
of organisms
Students who wish to study Functional biology apply to
the Science degree (TR071) and may select Functional
biology as their specialist area for the 3rd and 4th years.
Junior Freshman (first) year prerequisites: Biology 1101
& 1102, Mathematics or Mathematical methods
Senior Freshman (second year) prerequisites: Biology
BY2201, BY2202, BY2203, BY2208.
For details of the first two years of the Science course,
including entry requirements, see page 139.
What is Functional biology?
Functional biology is the comparative physiology of plants and
animals; i.e. comparing the way different kinds of organisms
function in the context of their structure (anatomy). Many of the
mechanisms organisms use for survival are conserved across
species, allowing the revelation of key functional principles.
Furthermore, the mechanisms which organisms have evolved
depend on their interactions with the environment through
time. Finally, Functional biology has important roles to play
in elucidating the effects of gene mutations and/or deletions
affecting protein function and environmental effects on gene
What will you study?
This course focuses on comparing and contrasting animal and
plant physiology. Modules are provided from the disciplines of
Plant sciences and Zoology and from the School of Genetics
and Microbiology. The Junior Sophister (third) year provides a
broad knowledge and understanding of Functional biology, while
in the final year a major component of the course is a lab-based
research project chosen from the disciplines of Plant sciences
or Zoology. Final-year teaching also occurs through small-group
tutorials in areas of specialisation in plant or animal Functional
biology as well as through lectures.
Work in the Junior Sophister (third) year provides a broad
overview of functional biology and includes core modules in:
Comparative physiology
Plant physiology
Plant structure, anatomy, metabolism
Applied lab techniques
Plant molecular biology
Developmental biology
Experimental design and analysis
Plant molecular genetics I
Gene expression
Broad curriculum (see p. 13)
A major component of the Senior Sophister (fourth) year is
the research project. Tutorials in specialist areas of functional
biology are also selected as well as taught modules, including
the following:
Comparative physiology of eyes and vision
Environmental physiology
Plant molecular genetics II
Plant developmental genetics.
Career opportunities
Functional biology acts as the perfect springboard for
undergraduate students to go on to post-graduate bioscience
degrees; e.g. Masters and Ph.D.s in biological/physiological
disciplines. Graduates of Functional biology are also ideally
placed to contribute to the knowledge economy/society through
careers with biotechnology companies and/or industry, having
gained unique and valuable experience and training. The course
also provides an excellent background for students who want to
pursue a career in teaching biology.
Further information
Tel: +353 1 896 1366