• Offered by Biology Teaching and Learning Centre
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Classification Transitional
  • Course subject Biology
  • Areas of interest Cell and Molecular Biology, Plant Science, Biology, Biomedical Science
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • AsPr Giel van Dooren
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course
  • Offered in Second Semester 2023
    See Future Offerings

This course examines the biology of cells, the basic units of life on Earth. The course addresses several central themes in cellular biology, including: the origin and early evolution of cells, cellular division and replication, the transport of proteins and other macromolecules within cells, the compartmentalisation of cellular metabolism, the functions of organelles in protists, animals and plants, the cellular basis of differentiation, and signalling between and within cells. Students will be exposed to the latest breakthroughs in the field and learn key cellular biology techniques. A unique aspect of the course is a practical component that addresses a research question to which the answer is unknown at the outset of the experiments. This practical provides students with an authentic research experience, and enables students to develop valuable skills in data analysis and scientific writing.

Note: Graduate students attend joint classes with undergraduates but are assessed separately.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Describe the evolution, diversity and replication of cells;
  2. Explain the role of compartmentalization and signalling in cellular biology;
  3. Critically interpret key experiments in the history of cell biology;
  4. Critically evaluate and apply knowledge of modern techniques in cellular biology.
  5. Critically interpret, analyse and present experimental data.

Other Information

Please email rsb.studentadmin@anu.edu.au to request a permission code to enrol in this course.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Laboratory-based research assignment (15) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
  2. Description of a cutting-edge technique in cell biology (15) [LO 3,4,5]
  3. Research report in the style of a scientific paper (25) [LO 3,4,5]
  4. Final exam (45) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]

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.


The expected workload will consist of approximately 130 hours throughout the semester including:

  • Face-to face component which may consist of 2 x 1 hour lectures per week (total 24 hours). 6 x 4 hours of practical and 3 x 3 hours of workshop sessions throughout the semester.
  • Approximately 75 hours of self directed study which will include preparation for lectures, presentations and other assessment tasks.

Students are expected to actively participate and contribute towards discussions.

Inherent Requirements

To be determined

Requisite and Incompatibility

This course is incompatible with BIOL2117

You will need to contact the Biology Teaching and Learning Centre to request a permission code to enrol in this course.

Prescribed Texts



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

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you 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). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $4320
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $6180
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
6030 24 Jul 2023 31 Jul 2023 31 Aug 2023 27 Oct 2023 In Person N/A

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