Credit points: 15

Subject outline

This subject will introduce students to the diversity and ecology of microbial life across a broad scale. Topics examine the breadth of ways in which microbial communities impact life on this planet, including their importance in planetary nutrient cycles as well as human, plant and ecosystem health. This subject will provide students with a capstone experience focussing on professional skills expected from a working microbiologist, comprising a laboratory program and workshops linked to the lecture topics. There is also a strong emphasis on collaboration, formulating hypotheses, data analysis and scientific communication. 

SchoolLife Sciences

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorCarolyn Bell

Available to Study Abroad/Exchange StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 3 - UG

Available as ElectiveYes

Learning Activities​Learning activities will include online lectures, laboratory classes, and workshops 

Capstone subjectNo

Subject particulars

Subject rules



Incompatible subjectsMIC3AM

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Quota Management StrategyN/A

Quota-conditions or rulesN/A

Special conditionsThe wearing of a laboratory coat and closed toes shoes in practical class. Completion of Working with Recombinant DNA training module.

Minimum credit point requirementN/A

Assumed knowledgeN/A

Career Ready


Work-based learningNo

Self sourced or Uni sourcedN/A

Entire subject or partial subjectN/A

Total hours/days requiredN/A

Location of WBL activity (region)N/A

WBL addtional requirementsN/A

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

Graduate Capabilities

Intended Learning Outcomes

01. Examine and illustrate the ecological principles that govern symbiotic, marine, and terrestrial microbiomes
02. Apply knowledge and skill in culture and non-culture techniques in the study of microbial processes in different environments
03. Employ key microbiological and bioinformatic techniques to manipulate and study microorganisms for experiments in the laboratory
04. Integrate findings from laboratory experiments into scientific papers accurately and clearly

Subject options

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Start date between: and    Key dates

Melbourne (Bundoora), 2021, Semester 2, Blended


Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment sizeN/A

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorCarolyn Bell

Class requirements

Laboratory ClassWeek: 31 - 43
One 3.00 hours laboratory class per week on weekdays during the day from week 31 to week 43 and delivered via face-to-face.

Unscheduled Online ClassWeek: 31 - 43
Two 1.00 hour unscheduled online class per week on weekdays during the day from week 31 to week 43 and delivered via online.

Unscheduled Online ClassWeek: 31 - 43
One 1.00 hour unscheduled online class every two weeks on weekdays during the day from week 31 to week 43 and delivered via video conference.


Assessment elementCommentsCategoryContributionHurdle% ILO*

Journal style article (1200 words equivalent per student) 

N/AReportGroupNo30 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3, SILO4

Workshop activities x 2 (800 words equivalent) 

N/AAssignmentIndividualNo20 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3, SILO4

Online quizzes (2 x 10% throughout semester) (800 words equivalent) 

N/AQuizzesIndividualNo20 SILO1, SILO2

Final examination (1h) (1000 words equivalent) 

N/ACentral examIndividualNo30 SILO1, SILO2