Academic year 2019/20
Owning department Department of Biology & Biochemistry
Credits (ECTS) 20
Notional study hours 400
Level FHEQ level 7
Period Weeks 1-33
Availability Compulsory unit on MSc Molecular Biosciences (Bioinformatics)


This compulsory unit synthesises the fundamental principles in genetics and genomics with computational sciences. You'll be provided with the key concepts underpinning four core areas of bioinformatics:

  • Genetics and genomics
  • Genome bioinformatics: principles of genome (NGS) analysis, including genome assembly, variant calling and transcriptomics
  • Statistics: core bio-statistical methods, within the R statistical computing environment
  • Computational modelling in biology


After successfully completing this unit, you should be able to:

  • apply your understanding of your core knowledge underpinning concepts in genetics, genomics, statistics and computational modelling
  • critically evaluate and communicate the findings of a cutting-edge research publication through a formal presentation
  • critically appraise current problems and/or new insights informed by the forefront of bioinformatics research
  • demonstrate an integrative and evaluative approach to addressing some of the challenges and opportunities in analysing biological datasets
  • exercise autonomy and self-direction in independent working in your studies.

Unit delivery

The unit will be taught using a blended approach, which combines face-to-face interactions with online activities, including:

  • online essential concepts videos and study material for the first few weeks, supported by weekly online sessions by tutors
  • face to face lectures, computer sessions, seminars, workshops, small group tutorials to help consolidate the content and to enable deeper learning
  • Journal clubs, Behind the Paper and data interpretation and analysis sessions, designed to expose you to the latest research developments in the field and develop your critical thinking and analytical skills
  • bioscience skills masterclasses to help you strengthen your skills, such as writing, presentation, time management, organisational and interpersonal.

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