BI2BQ5-Clinical Haematology and Cellular Pathology

Module Provider: School of Biological Sciences
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Pre-requisites: BI1BE2 Pathology: Introduction to Human Disease and PM1PB2A Human Physiology or PM1PB2 Human Physiology
Non-modular pre-requisites: Recommended for students with an interest in Molecular and Medical Microbiology and Clinical or Food Microbiology
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2014/5

Module Convenor: Dr Natasha Barrett


Summary module description:

In this module students will develop a detailed understanding of two critically important areas of biomedical sciences and clinical investigation - haematology and cellular pathology. Specifically, this will involve the development of an understanding of: (1) normal and abnormal cells and molecules in blood cells and a range of other tissues; (2) the techniques used within the haematology and cellular pathology laboratories to investigate and diagnose disease; (3) the treatment and assessment of treatment of disease; (4) the roles of these laboratories within a hospital setting.

Some lectures will build on more basic introductions in Part 1, although many new areas of interest will be introduced for the first time. Practical sessions and seminars will enable the application of the theoretical information gained in the lectures and also provide experience of investigative biomedical science, the techniques used, and safety and ethical issues within the working clinical laboratory environment.
This module will be taught by biomedical scientists, clinicians and academic members of the School of Biological Sciences.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of this module students should be able to:
1.Describe the basic organisation of the blood system and other tissues, and the molecular and physiological basis of haematological diseases, and diseases of other tissues that may be diagnosed through histology techniques.
2.Explain how haematological and histopathological principles are applied to the diagnosis of specific disease, and understand the technical basis of diagnostic techniques of fundamental importance in the haematology and cellular pathology laboratories.
3.Describe the organisation and processes within these laboratories, the importance of Good Laboratory Practice (GLP), quality control, safety procedures, ethical considerations and patient confidentiality.

Additional outcomes:
Students will gain some experience of the work of professional biomedical scientists within hospital laboratories through meeting with, and teaching by biomedical scientists and clinicians.

Outline content:
The lectures cover:
-Blood cell morphology and identification
-Red blood cells - structure and function
-Anaemia and haemoglobinopathy
-Blood transfusion serology
-White blood cells (granulocytes, monocytes)
-White blood cells (lymphocytes)
-Leukaemias, lymphomas and myelomas
-The full blood count, blood cell counting and automated identification
-Haemostasis (platelets, coagulation and fibrinolysis) - laboratory techniques
-Platelet pathologies including thrombocytopenia, platelet function disorders and thrombosis
-Coagulation disorders including haemophilia and thrombophilia
-Histopathology: tissue labelling, fixation, sectioning, staining and observation
-Cytopathology: sample preparation, staining and observation
-Auto-immunity and histopathology

Practical sessions cover:
-Blood cell morphology, identification and counting; blood transfusion serology.
-Haemostasis: platelet function and coagulation assays.
-Histological and cytological techniques - staining and observation of tissues / cells.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
Teaching will be delivered through formal lectures and seminars. The clinical investigation of haematology and cellular pathology will be reinforced through three practical sessions that will introduce students to fundamentally important assays of cells, cell function and coagulation. Students will also gain insight to work within a clinical laboratory environment and will gain from meeting with, and teaching from, practicing biomedical scientists and clinicians.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 16
Seminars 7
Practicals classes and workshops 12
Guided independent study 65
Total hours by term 100.00
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 70
Report 30

Other information on summative assessment:
In-course summative assessment consists of 4 practical reports, totalling 30%.

Formative assessment methods:
Case studies are carried out during seminar sessions. Students work independently, or in groups, to complete case study worksheets during the session. Guidance (where necessary) and verbal feedback will be provided during each session, followed by a review of the answers and discussion at the end of the session.

Formative assessment and verbal feedback of practical laboratory skills will be given continuously during all practical sessions.

Practice examination questions (both MCQ and essay), with answers for self-assessment, are made available on blackboard and/or in a revision session.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener 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:
    A one-and-a-half hour examination consisting of compulsory multiple choice questions and requiring one essay question to be answered out of three.

    Requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Re-examination in August/September

    Last updated: 8 October 2014

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