• Class Number 3449
  • Term Code 2930
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 12 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • AsPr Anthony Millar
    • Dr Angela McGaughran
    • Dr Arun Yadav
    • Dr Darren Wong
    • Dr Liang Pin Ng
    • Dr Matthew Johnson
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 25/02/2019
  • Class End Date 31/05/2019
  • Census Date 31/03/2019
  • Last Date to Enrol 04/03/2019
SELT Survey Results

This course will introduce students to a variety of state-of-the-art techniques, both practically and theoretically, that are commonly used in the research fields of molecular biology and genetics.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

On satisfying the requirements of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
  1. Understand the theory behind the new technologies related to different areas of biology and how to apply these technologies to a specific research question
  2. Gain practical skills in cutting-edge technologies such as real-time PCR, Westerns, cell analysis, sequencing, reporter gene analysis, DNA and RNA purification, cDNA synthesis and proteomic gel analysis.
  3. Be able to record and analyse scientific data.
  4. Be able to read and write scientific papers.
  5. Orally present scientific information
  6.  to appreciate and design solutions to scientific problems.

Research-Led Teaching

Students will be lectured by a cohort of Early Career Researchers, to be introduced to cutting edge techniques that they use in their research. Therefore this course acts as an interface between teaching and the research that is carried out at the Research School of Biology. Additionally, traditional lab notebooks are replaced by computer based Lab archives, to introduce students to the latest in data recording. Two extended practicals will be written up as scientific papers; workshops to teach correct scientific writing will be provided by the Academic Skill and Learning Centre at ANU

Field Trips

There are no field trips in this course, but the practical are carried out during the mid-semester break.

Additional Course Costs

Lab coat and glasses are not provided, but are mandatory for the practical classes.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • All assessment will be marked and extensive critical feedback provided. This will be on mark sheets for the oral presentation, but for all other assessment it will be done on Wattle, either in the Turnitin tool, or the quiz tools. Problem solving tutorials discussing answers to the first three assignments are done for assignments 1-3, with feedback on answers provided.

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Recombinant DNA technology
2 PCR Assignment 1
3 Genetic manipulation
4 Protein analysis Assignment 2
5 Gene expression
6 Bioinformatics/sequencing technology Assignment 3
7 Mid Semester break Plant molecular biology practical Lab archives - journal of lab experiments
8 Mid Semester break Insect/bioinformatic practical Lab archives - journal of lab experiments
9 Proteomics
10 Oral and scientific writing presentations and instructions. Assignment 4
11 Scientific paper writing workshops
12 DNA sequencing applications Plant scientific paper
13 Student oral presentation Oral presentations
14 Advanced scientific paper writing workshops
15 Insect/bioinformatic paper

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Assignment 1 12 % 08/03/2019 18/03/2019 1, 6
Assignment 2 12 % 22/03/2019 01/04/2019 1, 6
Assignment 3 12 % 05/04/2019 15/04/2019 1, 6
Proteomics Assignment 6 % 26/04/2019 06/05/2019 1, 6
Lab Archives 8 % 26/04/2019 06/05/2019 3
Plant scientific paper outline 2 % 06/05/2019 08/05/2019 2, 3, 4, 6
Peer-review 2 % 07/05/2019 10/05/2019 2, 3, 4, 6
Plant Scientific paper 16 % 13/05/2019 27/05/2019 2, 3, 4, 6
Oral presentations 10 % 20/05/2019 27/05/2019 5
Insect-bioinformatics paper. 20 % 03/06/2019 13/06/2019 2, 3, 4, 6

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website. Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Participation is required for the practical sessions and is highly recommended for all other aspects of the course.


There is no exam for this course.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 12 %
Due Date: 08/03/2019
Return of Assessment: 18/03/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 6

Assignment 1

Answer and solve problems related to molecular biology/recombinant DNA technology experimental approaches.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 12 %
Due Date: 22/03/2019
Return of Assessment: 01/04/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 6

Assignment 2

Answer and solve problems related to molecular biology/PCR experimental approaches.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 12 %
Due Date: 05/04/2019
Return of Assessment: 15/04/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 6

Assignment 3

Answer and solve problems related to molecular biology/genetic manipulation experimental approaches.

Assessment Task 4

Value: 6 %
Due Date: 26/04/2019
Return of Assessment: 06/05/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 6

Proteomics Assignment

Answer and solve problems related to proteomic experimental approaches.

Assessment Task 5

Value: 8 %
Due Date: 26/04/2019
Return of Assessment: 06/05/2019
Learning Outcomes: 3

Lab Archives

Detailed recording of results and procedures of experiments performed in the plant practical/insect-bioinformatic lab weeks

Assessment Task 6

Value: 2 %
Due Date: 06/05/2019
Return of Assessment: 08/05/2019
Learning Outcomes: 2, 3, 4, 6

Plant scientific paper outline

Outline of proposed plant scientific paper

Assessment Task 7

Value: 2 %
Due Date: 07/05/2019
Return of Assessment: 10/05/2019
Learning Outcomes: 2, 3, 4, 6


Peer-review of fellow students outline of Plant Scientific paper, including critical/constructive feedback

Assessment Task 8

Value: 16 %
Due Date: 13/05/2019
Return of Assessment: 27/05/2019
Learning Outcomes: 2, 3, 4, 6

Plant Scientific paper

Scientific paper of plant experiments carried out during the practical week.

Assessment Task 9

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 20/05/2019
Return of Assessment: 27/05/2019
Learning Outcomes: 5

Oral presentations

Critically present a scientific paper to the class related to recent development in DNA sequencing technologies or CRISPR/CAS technology

Assessment Task 10

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 03/06/2019
Return of Assessment: 13/06/2019
Learning Outcomes: 2, 3, 4, 6

Insect-bioinformatics paper.

Scientific paper of Insect-bioinformatics experiments carried out during the practical week.

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) as submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Returning Assignments

All assignments will be handed in through the Wattle teaching tool, and all feedback will be provided through Wattle.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Re submission of assignments is not permitted.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

AsPr Anthony Millar

Research Interests

Gene silencing and post-transcriptional gene regulation in plants

AsPr Anthony Millar

Friday 14:00 16:00
Dr Angela McGaughran

Research Interests

Dr Angela McGaughran

Dr Arun Yadav

Research Interests

Dr Arun Yadav

Dr Darren Wong
6125 3059

Research Interests

Dr Darren Wong

Dr Liang Pin Ng
6125 3524

Research Interests

Dr Liang Pin Ng

Dr Matthew Johnson
6127 0049

Research Interests

Dr Matthew Johnson

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions