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Last modified: 26 Feb 2018 19:18

Course Overview

  • course covers many of the core concepts and processes which are essential for advanced study in Biomedical and related sciences;
  • you will gain cutting edge, in depth and focussed knowledge of embryological techniques, tools and their practical applications, and the fundamental principles of reproductive biology delivered in a research-driven environment;
  • this course will prepare you for advanced study of developmental biology and human embryology;
  • practicals are designed to provide a 3D understanding of embryology as well as an in-depth study of a model organism, providing transferrable skills as problem solving and web page/blog design,further developing graduate attributes and employability

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 3
Session First Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus None. Sustained Study No
  • Dr Neil Vargesson

Qualification Prerequisites


What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • Either BI20M3 Molecular Biology of the Gene (Passed) or BI25B2 Physiology of Human Organ Systems (Passed)
  • Any Undergraduate Programme (Studied)
  • Either Programme Level 3 or Programme Level 4

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?

  • DB3002 Principles of Development (Studied)
  • DB3003 Principles of Development (Studied)
  • DB3005 Principles of Developmental Biology (Studied)

Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

The course covers reproductive biology, fertilisation, development of the fertilised egg into an embryo (including gastrulation, neurulation, cavitation), the common mechanisms of development shared between vertebrates, discussion of each of the main model organisms used to study developmental biology, an introduction to the embryological and genetic tools available to developmental biologists to understand developmental processes and investigate why developmental and reproductive biology is important to society.  The course is designed to provide the principles to allow students to understand later concepts in the Developmental Biology and Human Embryology degree programmes, but also give a basic introduction to the field for non-specialists.

Further Information & Notes

Teaching Breakdown
  • 2 computer based practicals during weeks 11 - 14
  • 5 lectures during weeks 10 - 13
  • 2 lectures during week 14

Degree Programmes for which this Course is Prescribed

  • BSc Biomedical Sciences (Develop'l Biol)
  • BSc Human Embryology & Dev'l Biology
  • Bsc In Biomedical Sciences (Dev Biology & Biobusiness)
  • Bsc In Human Embryology & Developmental Biology (Biobusiness
  • MSci in Biomedical Sci (Developm'l Biology) with Ind Placm't
  • MSci in Human Embryology & Developmental Bio with Ind Plac't
  • Msci In Biomedical Sciences (Develo Biolo & Bio Bus) With Ip

Contact Teaching Time

34 hours

This is the total time spent in lectures, tutorials and other class teaching.

Teaching Breakdown


1st Attempt: 1 one-and-a-half hour essay examination (70%) and in-course assessment (30%). Continuous assessment comprises: 1 problem solving exercise, 1 web based assignment. Resit: 1 one-and-a-half hour essay examination (70%) and previous continuous assessment (30%).

Formative Assessment

- Problem-solving sessions.


- Feedback on problem-based learning exercise.

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