Available in 2022
Course code



10 units


2000 level

Course handbook


Microbiology is the fundamental biological science that studies microscopic single-celled organisms including bacteria, archaea, protists, fungi, and viruses. An understanding of the structure, life-cycle, metabolism and growth of microbes is essential for further study in a variety of biological sciences including genetics, ecology, evolution, health and biotechnology. Knowledge of microbes also has important applications in environmental sciences, agriculture, food production and safety. This course provides students with a foundation in microbial biology, sufficient for further study in a range of disciplines and necessary for continued studies in microbiology and biotechnology.



  • Semester 2 - 2022

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Describe the diversity and characteristics of microorganisms;

2. Apply knowledge of the physio-chemical factors to the growth of microorganisms;

3. Characterise beneficial and pathological interactions of microorganisms with the human body;

4. Link principles and theory of microbial genetics to applications in biotechnology;

5. Explain how food production, spoilage and disease transmission is orchestrated by microorganisms;

6. Communicate scientific concepts in written form using appropriate terminology;


Topics will include:

1. Microbial diversity and growth

  • Major groups (virus, bacteria, eukaryote)
  • Cell structure
  • Metabolism and growth

2. Microbial interactions with the human body

  • Normal microbiota
  • Probiotics
  • Microbial infections and Antimicrobials
  • Microbiology of food

3. Microbial genetics

  • DNA as the genetic material and its replications
  • Mutations and repair
  • Gene transfer mechanisms

Assumed knowledge

BIOL1001 and BIOL1002; OR BIOL1040 and BIOL1070.

Assessment items

Quiz: Module Competency assessment/ Quizzes - On-line

Written Assignment: Tutorial Assignment

Formal Examination: Exam

Tutorial / Laboratory Exercises: Tutorial Exercise

Contact hours



Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term


Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.