University Handbook 2017

Bachelor of Biological Sciences

Course code/s: SBBIS

Course details
Location Bundoora
Course code SBBIS
Course coordinator Dr Fiona Bird
Course advisors Dr Pam Hurst and Zoia Hristova
Available to international students Yes
CRICOS 006171K
Course duration 3 years full-time, or part-time equivalent
Credit points 360 credit points
Exchange opportunity Yes
Leave of absence available Yes, for a maximum of 12 months
Study plan guide To assist with planning your enrolment, you can download the course structure PDF here
Course queries Current students: ASK La Trobe
Prospective students: Future Students
Notes  

Course description

This three-year degree is designed for students who want to pursue a career in biology. The Bachelor of Biological Sciences offers the flexibility of choice from a range of specialisations within the discipline of biology, and prepares graduates to address some of today’s big issues such as protecting native forests and grasslands, discovering new medicinal cures or sustainable agricultural practises or mapping the genome of endangered species.

The degree includes foundation studies in the first year to prepare you for study in biological science. It also introduces you to a wide range of discipline areas in biology. In years two and three you will specialise in your area of interest, allowing you to graduate with up to two majors. You can choose from specialised or broad majors depending on your interests and the set of skills you want to develop for your career.

What skills will I develop? As a biological sciences student you will have the opportunity to attend a full range of practical classes to support lectures, and participate in a range of field trips. Students can study biological communities in the La Trobe Wildlife Sanctuary on-site at the University's Melbourne Campus as well as field trips to locations across Victoria. Students can acquire field survey techniques including sampling in different habitats and identification of animal and plant species as well as practical and laboratory skills that prepare you to work in a laboratory science such as microbiology, cell and molecular biology, biotechnology or medical science.

The Bachelor of Biological Sciences is designed to be flexible, allowing you to specialise in several areas of biology, or combine your biology subjects with other science subjects. The Bachelor of Biological Sciences offers majors in discrete disciplines as well as broader multidisciplinary areas such as ecology and molecular biology. Options include:

Biochemistry Microbiology
Botany Molecular biology
Ecology Zoology
Genetics  

Student exchange & overseas short programs

Student exchange and overseas short programs offer a unique opportunity for a meaningful learning and educational experience abroad.  La Trobe University encourages all students to make the world their campus by participating in an exchange or overseas short program that fits within your degree structure.  Student exchange and overseas short programs may also be eligible for a mobility grant.

Essentials subjects

The three Essentials - Global Citizenship, Innovation & Entrepreneurship and Sustainability Thinking are specialist areas designed to give you an edge with employers. Essentials will enable you to adapt your knowledge and skills to new contexts in a rapidly changing world. Subjects addressing the Essentials are part of all undergraduate La Trobe degrees and can be identified in the subject search by distinct icons. The list of approved subjects can be found on the Essentials webpage.

Course intended learning outcomes

Course Intended Learning Outcomes (CILOs) are brief statements defining what students are expected to demonstrate they know and can do by the end of a course.

Produce clear, concise, grammatically correct written work (eg, scientific reports, essays, summaries) that present coherent evidence‐based explanations to communicate appropriately to the intended audience (eg, peers, scientific community, non‐scientific community).
Conduct clearly spoken presentations that use correct terminology to communicate logically the results of scientific experiments, current scientific/discipline issues, or theoretical concepts to the intended audience (eg, peers, scientific community, non scientific community).
Summarize numerical data produced in experiments using basic mathematical techniques, present summary data in tables and/or graphs, be able to analyze experimental data and evaluate data from sources such as, scientific reports and journal articles.
Develop independent learning and research skills by locating, interrogating and evaluating relevant scientific information to generate scientific reports.
Develop rational and rigorous arguments to interrogate assumptions, synthesise scientific information, formulate hypothesis, draw unbiased conclusions and defend scientific ideas.
Analyse using a systematic approach to reasoning and conceptualising scientific ideas to solve constructed and real world scientific and technical problems.
Demonstrate effective teamwork in a range of roles using team‐building, self assessment and communication skills to complete tasks.
Employ academic integrity and scientific rigour in conducting and evaluating scientific research, and managing self in professional practice.
Use scientific terminology to discuss the fundamental biological concepts and current issues of at least two of the discipline areas (biochemistry, botany, genetics, microbiology or zoology) and be able to apply relevant biological concepts to analyse and evaluate the results of investigations into real world problems.

Course structure

The course requires the completion of 360 credit points over three years full-time or equivalent part-time duration.

First year

First year (120 credit points)
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
TE-SEM-1 Academic Integrity Module (online) * LTU0AIM 0
TE-SEM-1 Wominjeka La Trobe: Indigenous Cultural Literacy for Higher Education (online) ** ABS0WOM 0
TE-SEM-1 Molecules, Genes and Cells BIO1MGC 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecology, Evolution and Biodiversity BIO1EEB 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal, Plant and Microbial Life BIO1APM 15
TE-SEM-1 / TE-SEM-2

Choose two first-year level subjects from the selected science disciplinesSCI1SIS is recommended.  Students wishing to undertake a major in Biochemistry must undertake CHE1APL.

  30
TE-SEM-1 / TE-SEM-2 Choose two first-year level subjects   30
Students must enrol in either CHE1CHF or CHE1GEN.
Students who have passed VCE Chemistry Units 3 & 4 (or equivalent), must enrol in CHE1GEN. All other students must enrol in CHE1CHF.
TE-SEM-1 Chemistry Foundations CHE1CHF 15
TE-SEM-1 General Principles of Chemistry CHE1GEN 15

Key: *LTU0AIM (formerly SCI1AIM) is a not-for-credit subject that you are required to complete at the commencement of your first semester. The subject is designed to enhance your knowledge and awareness of issues concerning academic integrity.
** ABS0WOM is a not-for-credit subject that you are required to complete at the commencement of your first semester. The subject is designed to introduce students to Indigenous Australian perspectives, experiences, history, culture and customs.

Second year

Second year (120 credit points)
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
Unless a clearly defined three-year program of study has been organised, it is highly recommended that students complete a full year of study in at least two biological science disciplines in order to ensure flexibility of subject choice at the third-year level.  Second year consists of 60 credit points of biology (from the core-choice subjects listed below), 30 credit points of science from any discipline or from the core-choice subjects listed below and 30 credit points from any discipline from within the University for which prerequisites have been met.
  Students must choose subjects to the value of 60 credit points from the list below:    
TE-SEM-1 Australian Fauna and Ecology ZOO2FE 15
TE-SEM-1 Introduction to Biochemistry and Molecular Biology BCH2IBM 15
TE-SEM-1 Ecological Genetics and Evolution GEN2EGE 15
TE-SEM-1 Introductory Microbiology MIC2MI 15
TE-SEM-1 Inner Life of Plants BOT2ILP 15
TE-SEM-1 Practice of Science BIO2POS 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal Physiology ZOO2AP 15
TE-SEM-2 Plant Diversity and Ecology BOT2PDE 15
TE-SEM-2 Metabolic Biochemistry and Cell Biology BCH2MBC 15
TE-SEM-2 Molecular Genetics GEN2MHG 15
TE-SEM-2 Medical and Veterinary Microbiology MIC2MMV 15
TE-SEM-2 Topics in Infectious Disease MIC2ID 15
 

Students must choose 30 credit points of second-year level subjects from any science discipline or from the core-choice subjects listed above.  The following electives could be considered:  AGR2PPD, AGR2ILS, ENV2REM, AGR2AN, ENV2ME, ENV2AEC.

  30
  Students must choose 30 credit points of second-year level subjects from any discipline within the university (for which prerequisites have been met).   30

Third year

Third year (120 credit points)
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
Third year consists of 60 credit points of biology (from the core-choice subjects listed below) and 60 credit points from other subjects or additional biology subjects, if not more than 60 credit points are taken from any one biological science discipline area. Please note: students wishing to proceed to Honours in Biochemistry, must complete BCH3AAB, BCH3BSB, BCH3ATB and one of the following two subjects: MED3PRJ or MED3LAB
  Students must choose subjects to the value of 60 credit points from the list below    
TE-SEM-SUMMER Mountain Ecosystems Field Course B ENV3ME 15
TE-SEM-SUMMER Heron Island Marine Physiology Field Course ZOO3HIF 15
TE-SEM-SUMMER Geology and Plant Life Field Course ENV3GPL 15
TE-SEM-1 Advanced Medical and Veterinary Microbiology MIC3AMM 30
TE-SEM-1 Animal Behaviour EEE3ANB 15
TE-SEM-1 Endangered Species Biology and Management ENV3ESB 15
TE-SEM-1 Mallee Field Course ENV3MFC 15
TE-SEM-1 Quantitative Research Methods ENV3QRM 15
TE-SEM-1 Advanced Analytical Biochemistry BCH3AAB 15
TE-SEM-1 Biochemistry and Systems Biology BCH3BSB 15
TE-SEM-1 Molecular Genetics GEN3HMG 30
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Microbiology MIC3AM 30
TE-SEM-2 Animal and Plant Interactions ENV3API 15
TE-SEM-2 Landscape Ecology and Conservation ENV3LEC 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal Reproduction EEE3ANR 15
TE-SEM-2 Animals Active and Asleep EEE3AAA 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution EEE3EGE 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution Research Project EEE3PRJ 15
TE-SEM-2 Agricultural Biotechnology BOT3ABT 15
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Topics in Biochemistry and Cell Biology BCH3ATB 15
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Biochemistry and Medical Biology Internship 1 MED3PRJ 15
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Biochemistry and Medical Biology Laboratory Course MED3LAB 15
TE-SEM-2 Plant Biotechnology BOT3PB 30
TE-SEM-WINTER Arid Ecosystem Conservation Field Course ENV3AEC 15
TE-SEM-1 / TE-SEM-2 Choose additional third-year level subjects to the value of 60 credit points.   60

Majors

Biochemistry

Biochemistry major
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
TE-SEM-1 Molecules, Genes and Cells BIO1MGC 15
TE-SEM-2 Applications of Chemistry CHE1APL 15
  Choose one Semester 1 chemistry subject. Students who have passed VCE Chemistry, Units 3 and 4 or equivalent, must choose CHE1GEN.    
TE-SEM-1 Chemistry Foundations CHE1CHF 15
TE-SEM-1 General Principles of Chemistry CHE1GEN 15
TE-SEM-1 Introduction to Biochemistry and Molecular Biology BCH2IBM 15
TE-SEM-2 Metabolic Biochemistry and Cell Biology BCH2MBC 15
TE-SEM-1 Advanced Analytical Biochemistry BCH3AAB 15
TE-SEM-1 Biochemistry and Systems Biology BCH3BSB 15
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Topics in Biochemistry and Cell Biology BCH3ATB 15
  Plus one of the following two subjects:    
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Biochemistry and Medical Biology Laboratory Course MED3LAB 15
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Biochemistry and Medical Biology Internship1 MED3PRJ 15

Key: 1 Incompatible with MED3LAB

Botany

Botany major
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
TE-SEM-1 Molecules, Genes and Cells BIO1MGC 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecology, Evolution and Biodiversity BIO1EEB 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal, Plant and Microbial Life BIO1APM 15
TE-SEM-1 Inner Life of Plants BOT2ILP 15
TE-SEM-2 Plant Diversity and Ecology BOT2PDE 15
  Choose 60 credit points of third year subjects from the list below:    
TE-SEM-SUM Geology and Plant Life Field Course ENV3GPL 15
TE-SEM-1 Endangered Species Biology and Management ENV3ESB 15
TE-SEM-1 Quantitative Research Methods ENV3QRM 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal Plant Interactions ENV3API 15
TE-SEM-2 Landscape Ecology and Conservation ENV3LEC 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution EEE3EGE 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution Research Project EEE3PRJ 15
TE-SEM-2 Plant Biotechnology BOT3PB 30
TE-SEM-2 Agricultural Biotechnology BOT3ABT 15

Ecology

Ecology major
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
TE-SEM-1 Molecules, Genes and Cells BIO1MGC 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecology, Evolution and Biodiversity BIO1EEB 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal, Plant and Microbial Life BIO1APM 15
  Recommended elective: STA1DCT, STA1LS, STA1CTS or MAT1MAB    
  Choose at least 30 credit points from the following second-year level subjects:    
TE-SEM-1 Applied Biostatistics STA2ABS 15
TE-SEM-1 Australian Fauna and Ecology ZOO2FE 15
TE-SEM-1 Issues in Conservation WCB2IC 15
TE-SEM-1 Practice of Science BIO2POS 15
TE-SEM-1 Ecological Genetics and Evolution GEN2EGE 15
TE-SEM-1 Introduction to Land and Soil Management AGR2ILS 15
TE-SEM-2 Plant Diversity and Ecology BOT2PDE 15
  Choose 60 credit points of third year subjects from the list below:    
TE-SEM-SUM Mountain Ecosystems Field Course B ENV3ME 15
TE-SEM-SUM Heron Island Field Course ZOO3HIF 15
TE-SEM-SUM Geology and Plant Life Field Course ENV3GPL 15
TE-SEM-1 Endangered Species Biology and Management ENV3ESB 15
TE-SEM-1 Mallee Field Course ENV3MFC 15
TE-SEM-1 Quantitative Research Methods ENV3QRM 15
TE-SEM-1 Animal Behaviour EEE3ANB 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal Plant Interactions ENV3API 15
TE-SEM-2 Landscape Ecology and Conservation ENV3LEC 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution EEE3EGE 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution Research Project EEE3PRJ 15
TE-SEM-WIN Arid Ecosystem Conservation Field Course ENV3AEC 15

Genetics

Genetics major
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
TE-SEM-1 Molecules, Genes and Cells BIO1MGC 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecology, Evolution and Biodiversity BIO1EEB 15
TE-SEM-1 Ecological Genetics and Evolution GEN2EGE 15
TE-SEM-2 Molecular and Human Genetics GEN2MHG 15
TE-SEM-1 Human and Molecular Genetics GEN3HMG 30
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution EEE3EGE 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution Research Project EEE3PRJ 15

Microbiology

Microbiology major
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
TE-SEM-1 Molecules, Genes and Cells BIO1MGC 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal, Plant and Microbial Life BIO1APM 15
TE-SEM-1 Introductory Microbiology MIC2MI 15
TE-SEM-2 Medical and Veterinary Microbiology MIC2MMV 15
TE-SEM-1 Advanced Medical and Veterinary Microbiology MIC3AMM 30
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Microbiology MIC3AM 30

Molecular biology

Molecular biology major
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
TE-SEM-1 Molecules, Genes and Cells BIO1MGC 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal, Plant and Microbial Life BIO1APM 15
  Choose one first-semester chemistry subject. Students who have passed VCE Chemistry, Units 3 and 4 or equivalent, must choose CHE1GEN.    
TE-SEM-1 Chemistry Foundations CHE1CHF 15
TE-SEM-1 General Principles of Chemistry CHE1GEN 15
  Recommended elective: CHE1APL and BIO1EEB    
  Choose at least 30 credit points from the following second-year level subjects:    
TE-SEM-1 Ecological Genetics and Evolution GEN2EGE 15
TE-SEM-1 Fundamentals of Chemistry A CHE2FCA 15
TE-SEM-1 Introduction to Biochemistry and Molecular Biology BCH2IBM 15
TE-SEM-1 Introductory Microbiology MIC2MI 15
TE-SEM-1 Inner Life of Plants BOT2ILP 15
TE-SEM-1 Practice of Science BIO2POS 15
TE-SEM-1 Medicinal and Organic Chemistry CHE2MOC 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal Physiology ZOO2AP 15
TE-SEM-2 Fundamentals of Chemistry B CHE2FCB 15
TE-SEM-2 Topics in Infectious Disease MIC2ID 15
TE-SEM-2 Metabolic Biochemistry and Cell Biology BCH2MBC 15
TE-SEM-2 Molecular and Human Genetics GEN2MHG 15
TE-SEM-2 Medical and Veterinary Microbiology MIC2MMV 15
TE-SEM-2 Forensic and Analytical Chemistry CHE2NAC 15
  Choose third-year level subjects to the value of at least 60 credit points. Note: 60 credit points of subjects from a single discipline at third year will be awarded a major in that discipline (e.g. BCH3AAB , BCH3BSB and BCH3ATB  plus one of MED3PRJ or MED3LAB = biochemistry major). The molecular biology major will be awarded to combinations of subjects from different disciplines (e.g. BCH3AAB , BCH3BSB and BOT3PB)    
TE-SEM-1 Advanced Chemistry A CHE3ADA 30
TE-SEM-1 Advanced Medical and Veterinary Microbiology MIC3AMM 30
TE-SEM-1 Advanced Analytical Biochemistry BCH3AAB 15
TE-SEM-1 Biochemistry and Systems Biology BCH3BSB 15
TE-SEM-1 Human and Molecular Genetics GEN3HMG 30
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Chemistry B CHE3ADB 30
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Microbiology MIC3AM 30
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Topics in Biochemistry and Cell Biology BCH3ATB 15
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Biochemistry and Medical Biology Laboratory Course MED3LAB 15
TE-SEM-2 Advanced Biochemistry and Medical Biology  Internship 1 MED3PRJ 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution EEE3EGE 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution Research Project EEE3PRJ 15
TE-SEM-2 Agricultural Biotechnology BOT3ABT 15
TE-SEM-2 Plant Biotechnology BOT3PB 30

Key: 1 Incompatible with MED3LAB

Zoology

Zoology major
Teaching period Subject name Subject code Credit points
TE-SEM-1 Molecules, Genes and Cells BIO1MGC 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecology, Evolution and Biodiversity BIO1EEB 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal, Plant and Microbial Life BIO1APM 15
  Recommended elective: STA1DCT, STA1LS or MAT1MAB    
  Choose second-year level subjects to the value of 30 credit points    
TE-SEM-1 Practice of Science BIO2POS 15
  And at least one of:    
TE-SEM-1 Australian Fauna and Ecology ZOO2FE 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal Physiology ZOO2AP 15
  Choose 60 credit points of third year subjects from the list below:    
TE-SEM-SUM Mountain Ecosystems Field Course B ENV3ME 15
TE-SEM-SUM Heron Island Marine Physiology Field Course ZOO3HIF 15
TE-SEM-1 Animal Behaviour EEE3ANB 15
TE-SEM-1 Endangered Species Biology and Management ENV3ESB 15
TE-SEM-1 Quantitative Research Methods ENV3QRM 15
TE-SEM-1 Mallee Field Course ENV3MFC 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal and Plant Interactions ENV3API 15
TE-SEM-2 Landscape Ecology and Conservation ENV3LEC 15
TE-SEM-2 Animal Reproduction EEE3ANR 15
TE-SEM-2 Animals Active and Asleep EEE3AAA 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution EEE3EGE 15
TE-SEM-2 Ecological Genetics and Evolution Research Project EEE3PRJ 15
TE-SEM-WIN Arid Ecosystem Conservation Field Course ENV3AEC 15

Please note: Some of these subjects may not be offered in the current year. For a full description of subjects, including the subject name, subject code, credit points, campus/location, teaching period and availability, subject coordinator, class requirements, assessment, prerequisites and readings, please click on the appropriate subject code.

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