BI1BAD2-Pathology and Histology

Module Provider: School of Biological Sciences
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Dr Andrew Bicknell


Summary module description:

The module will take an integrated approach to studying normal tissue architecture and how this is affected by disease. The cell biology and physiology concepts and laboratory skills introduced in the Autumn Term will be built upon to develop a more detailed picture of how individual cells become specialised and organized into complex tissues. This will then be applied through an overview of the major disease states affecting these tissues, leading to an appreciation of the range of diseases that affect humans. There will be a practical emphasis in this module through both the lectures and in the practical classes.

Assessable learning outcomes:
At the end of the module students will be able to:
- Demonstrate an appreciation of how cells are regulated as individual units and as part of a larger tissue.
- Discuss ways of communication between cells and tissues in multicellular organisms.
- Demonstrate an understanding of cell specialisation in different tissues of the body
- Identify different major tissues of the body via microscopic examination or from micrographs.
- Describe the causes, aetiology, epidemiology and diagnosis of several of the most important diseases affecting these tissues in humans.
- Describe the treatment and management of patients who suffer from such diseases.
- Demonstrate a practical and theoretical understanding of the methodologies used to study cells and tissues.
- Evaluate methodology for studying structure and function of cells and tissues.
- Students will have gained more advanced laboratory skills including the ability to recognize the different organelles in the cell from micrographs and to decipher pictures of more complex tissues.

Additional outcomes:
Students will have improved their technical lab skills and team working skills through practical sessions.
Students will have developed self-directed reading skills because they will be required to read relevant sections of the course textbook and supplied research publications. They will also have to demonstrate literature and internet searching skills to identify materials for use in creating their posters.

Outline content:
The basic building block of life is the cell and an understanding of cellular biology is crucial to understanding how unicellular and multicellular organisms function as well as the diseases that affect them. This module will introduce students to a more detailed molecular understanding of how cells work and to concepts of how complexes tissues are formed from basic cell units and which differentiation to form specialised cell types. This will be linked to the study of the major human diseases affecting these tissues.
Approximate break down of lecture content as follows:
This Spring Term module will build upon the subject areas covered in several of the Autumn Term modules. Outline lecture/discussion content would include:
- Essential methodologies in cell biology including cell culture, cells as experimental models and various types of microscopy.
- Cellular ultrastructure and architecture
- Cell motility
- Cell-cell communication
- Stem cells and primary cells and cultured cell lines.
- Cell differentiation for specialised function
- From cells to tissues - looking at epithelia, muscle, nervous and connective tissues and their cellular and extracellular constituents.
- Pathology - covering the causes, aetiology, epidemiology, diagnosis and treatment of diseases affecting these tissues, such as: cancer, cardiovascular disease (e.g. atherosclerosis, heart failure, stroke), CNS disorders (e.g. depression, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer's, schizophrenia), autoimmune diseases (e.g. rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis), diabetes, asthma and other respiratory diseases, GI tract disorders, and infections (bacterial, viral, fungal, parasitic, etc).
Practical classes will include: light microscopy examination of a panel of tissues requiring identification using materials provided, preparing tissue sections using a microtome, and the staining and identification of fixed tissues (histology) sections.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
There will be four 50 minute lecture/paper discussion classes each week. There will be five laboratory practical classes of 2 hours each and students will attend on alternate weeks. Students will be expected to complete a lab report and an online test on the practical classes. Course assessment of the pathology components will be provided through the completion of online case studies based upon material covered in lectures.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 40
Seminars 2
Practicals classes and workshops 10
Guided independent study 148
Total hours by term 200.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 70
Report 15
Class test administered by School 15

Other information on summative assessment:
Students will be required to submit reports and complete an online test on their lab work. Students will also complete weekly online case studies on the different pathologies studied.

Formative assessment methods:
Feedback will be given weekly on their understanding of the required reading through a short discussion session.
Feedback will be given in laboratory classes on the quality of their lab book note taking.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    One and a half hour examination

    Requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Re-examination in August/September

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 21 December 2016

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