• Offered by John Curtin School of Medical Research
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Course subject Biology
  • Areas of interest Medical Science, Cell and Molecular Biology, Genetics, Biomedical Science
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Course convener
    • AsPr Leonie Quinn
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course
  • Offered in Second Semester 2020
    See Future Offerings

All activities that form part of this course will be delivered remotely in Sem 2 2020.

What is cancer, and why is it a leading cause of death in many countries like Australia?  This course covers the Hallmarks of Cancer as described by Hanahan and Weinberg in their seminal papers of 2000 and 2011.  Normal cell biology and genetics and how it goes wrong in cancer will be presented, with principles being illustrated through clinically relevant examples. Classes will cover genetic, epigenetic, molecular biology, cell biology, cell signalling, immune, clinical and treatment aspects of cancer. Practicals / tutorials will also cover technologies and models used for studying cancer.

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. Explain the major hallmarks of cancer and the underlying molecular mechanisms.
  2. Illustrate the hallmarks with specific examples.
  3. Apply knowledge of the hallmarks to critically assess current and potential therapies.
  4. Critically analyse experimental models used to study cancer.

Indicative Assessment

    • Tutorial Tests / Online Quizes – 15% (LO 1-3)
    • Written assignment / Lab reports – 40% (LO 1-4, with special focus on LO 4)
    • Final exam – 45%.  (LO 1-4)

    In response to COVID-19: Please note that Semester 2 Class Summary information (available under the classes tab) is as up to date as possible. Changes to Class Summaries not captured by this publication will be available to enrolled students via Wattle. 

    The ANU uses 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. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


    2 lectures per week, a one hour tutorial per week, and up to seven laboratory sessions of 3 hours each.

    Requisite and Incompatibility

    To enrol in this course you must have successfully completed BIOL2161 and either BIOL2174 or BIOL2117 or BIOL2171. Incompatible with BIOL6108.

    Prescribed Texts

    The Biology of Cancer, (2nd Edition, 2014). Robert Weinberg.



    Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

    If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

    Student Contribution Band:
    Unit value:
    6 units

    If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

    Units EFTSL
    6.00 0.12500
    Domestic fee paying students
    Year Fee
    2020 $4830
    International fee paying students
    Year Fee
    2020 $6420
    Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

    Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

    ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

    The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
    Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

    Second Semester

    Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
    8673 27 Jul 2020 03 Aug 2020 31 Aug 2020 30 Oct 2020 In Person View

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