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Junior Freshman

 

BY1101:  Introduction to Molecular and Cellular Biology

(10 credits)
Module coordinator: Dr John Rochford (rchfordj@tcd.ie)

Module organisation and description:
The module runs for the first semester (Michaelmas Term) of the academic year and comprises of five lectures and one three-hour practical session per week (approx. 80 hours total contact time).

BY1101 is an introduction to molecular and cellular biology including biochemistry, genetics, developmental biology and microbiology. The levels of understanding in biology are covered, from ecosystems to molecules.  The major properties and functions of each class of biochemicals (carbohydrates, lipids, proteins and nucleic acids) will be described.  A description of the possible origin of life, from the abiotic world to multicellular organisms will be given, and the ultrastucture of the eukaryotic cell will be covered in detail. Students will be introduced to some basic concepts in genetics, considering the experimental evidence on which they are based and gaining insights into the central place of genetics in the biological sciences. Developmental biology deals with how a complex organism is established from a single cell- a fertilized egg cell and has relevance to our understanding of stem cells and how normal cells are regulated. Finally, Microbiology deals with prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms, and viruses. Students study cell and virus structure, cell growth and viral replication, infectious diseases and host immunity.

Learning outcomes:
On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:

  1. Describe the properties and functions of the major groups of biochemicals,
  2. Give an account of the origin of life, from the abiotic world to multicellular organisms, including an account of endosymbiosis.
  3. Give an account of the structure and functions of the plasma membrane and the major organelles that occur in eukaryotic cells.
  4. Describe the major steps involved in how a complex animal is formed.
  5. Relate the morphological changes that occur to the molecular and cellular changes that underlie and drive embryo development.
  6. Describe the structure and properties of prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms and the structure and replication of viruses.
  7. Describe the mechanisms of action of and resistance to antibiotics, how pathogens cause infection and host innate and induced immunity.   
  8. Use general texts, reference books and a range of other resources to further develop knowledge of biological issues through continued independent learning.
  9. Carry out a range of laboratory exercises, demonstrating the development of practical scientific skills.

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BY1102:  Introduction to Evolution, Biodiversity and the Environment

(10 credits)
Module coordinator: Dr Jane Stout (jane.stout@tcd.ie)

Module organisation and description:
The module runs for the second semester (Hilary Term) of the academic year and comprises of four lectures and one three-hour practical session per week (approx. 80 hours total contact time).

BY1102 will introduce students to “whole organism” biology i.e. the biology of individuals, species, populations and communities. We will cover evolutionary (past) and ecological (present) responses to the environment, involving examples from the multicellular Animal and Plant Kingdoms. Topics covered in this module will incorporate the diversity of species (from jellyfish to jaguars to jungle trees), the variety of approaches to life (from photosynthesising to filter-feeding to flying), the strategies employed to cope with different environments (from sea to surface) and interactions among individuals, among species and between ecosystems. In addition, the colonisation of the land, the most successful extant plant and animal groups, and human-induced threats to global biodiversity will be explored

Learning outcomes:
On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:

  1. Define the evolutionary relationships of major plant and animal groups,
  2. Identify mechanisms for survival in plants and animals in relation to their environment.
  3. Examine the ecological relationships between individuals, populations, communities and ecosystems.
  4. Show practical, numerical and analytical skills.
  5. Collate, synthesise, organise and present information in written reports.

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Last updated 30 November 2010 by btcweb@tcd.ie.