• Total units 48 Units
  • Areas of interest Chemistry, Biology
  • Major code BCHM-MAJ

Biochemistry is a scientific discipline that combines biological and chemical concepts and methods. It is focused on the understanding of molecules that are relevant to biological processes. These can be small molecules that form part of metabolic pathways, chemical compounds that bind to biological molecules and macromolecules such as DNA, RNA and proteins. Biochemistry as a discipline investigates the structure and function of these molecules either in isolation or in a cellular context. Biochemists generate and modify molecules to understand their function and design molecules with novel properties.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Combine chemical and biological concepts to understand the structure and function of molecules that are relevant to biological processes.
  2. Integrate chemical and biological concepts and ideas to solve problems of a biochemical nature.
  3. Have well developed laboratory based skills in methods that investigate biomolecules.
  4. Undertake appropriate risk assessments and use biochemicals in a safe manner.
  5. Use software and instrumentation for the acquisition, processing and analysis of biochemical data.
  6. Access relevant biochemical literature and use it to present well constructed arguments based on sound biochemical reasoning.
  7. Perform both collaborative and independent research in a professional manner.
  8. Communicate biochemical concepts clearly and accurately to an expert or a non-expert audience.
  9. Recognize the interdisciplinary nature of biochemistry and its underlying significance in other areas of science, such as medicine.
  10. Demonstrate an understanding of the ethical and social dimensions of practising biochemistry.

Other Information

To complete this major students must also complete the following course:

 Students intending to take the Genetics Specialisation or the Plant Science Specialisation will also need to complete:


These courses can form part of a Foundational Science minor, another science minor/major or sequence of science electives. If a student is in a Flexible Double Degree, the courses can only contribute towards one degree.

What 1st year courses should you enrol in? CHEM1101 and BIOL1004. BIOL1003 is recommended.

Additional information:

  • BIOL2202 is the recommended course from the Quantitative Skills list as it has been designed specifically for students to develop quantitative skills in biology. Note that some of the alternative courses listed have prerequisites, and it is your responsibility to choose courses for which you meet the requirements.
  • Students should note that this major only requires 2 x 3000 level coded courses. In order to complete the overall Science degree requirements of 5 x 3000 level course from the Science course list, students will need to complete another 3 x 3000 level Science courses.
  • For students taking BIOL3208 or BIOL3209 as part of this major, the research project must be in the field of biochemistry.
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This major requires the completion of 48 units, which must consist of:

24 units from the completion of the following courses:

BIOL1004 - Biology 2: Molecular and Cell Biology (6 units)

BIOL2171 - Biochemistry and Nutrition (6 units)

CHEM1201 - Chemistry 2 (6 units)

CHEM2211 - Chemical Biology 1 (6 units)

6 units from completion of a Quantitative Skills course from the following list:

BIOL2202 - Experimental Design and Analysis in Biology (6 units)

BIAN3014 - Research Design and Analysis in Biological Anthropology (6 units)

BIOL2001 - Introduction to Quantitative Biology (6 units)

ENVS1003 - Introduction to Environmental and Social Research (6 units)

PSYC2009 - Quantitative Methods in Psychology (6 units)

6 units from completion of a course from the following list:

BIOL2161 - Genes: Replication and Expression (6 units)

BIOL2162 - Molecular Gene Technology (6 units)

CHEM2208 - Chemical Biology 2 (6 units)

12 units from completion of courses from the following list:

BIOL3107 - Advances in Medical and Plant Biochemistry (6 units)

BIOL3110 - Stable isotopes in biogeochemistry, environment, medicine and authentication (6 units)

BIOL3208 - Biology Research Project (6 units)

BIOL3209 - Biology Research Project (12 units)

CHEM3204 - Structural Methods in Chemical Biology (6 units)

CHEM3207 - Current Topics in Chemical Biology (6 units)

CHEM3060 - Research Project in Chemistry (6 units)

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