• 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:

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

BIOL2001 Introduction to Quantitative Biology (6 units)

BIOL2202 Experimental Design and Analysis in 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)

BIOL3108 Hallmarks of Cancer (6 units)

BIOL3188 ANU SynBio Challenge Team Project (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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