Course Title: Perform molecular biology tests and procedures

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2017

Course Code: BIOL5235C

Course Title: Perform molecular biology tests and procedures

School: 174T School of VE Engineering, Health & Science

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5363 - Diploma of Laboratory Technology (Biotechnology)

Course Contact: Amber Mitton

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 8053

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Rowena Lavery

Nominal Hours: 150

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites



MSL973007 Perform microscopic examination

MSL973004 Perform aseptic techniques

Course Description

This unit of competency covers the ability to isolate, purify, verify and manipulate biomolecules and their products. This work requires close attention to working with small volumes, multiple-step procedures and prevention of contamination. Personnel are required to apply a wide range of molecular biology tests and procedures.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

MSL975014 Perform molecular biology tests and procedures


1 Interpret and schedule test requirements

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Review test request to identify samples to be tested, test method and equipment/instruments involved 1.2 Identify hazards and workplace control measures associated with the sample, preparation methods, reagents and/or equipment


2 Receive and handle samples

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Log and label samples according to workplace procedures 2.2 Record sample description, compare with specification and note and report discrepancies 2.3 Store samples in accordance with workplace and test method requirements 2.4 Maintain chain of custody, traceable to the worker, for all samples


3 Prepare equipment and reagents

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Set up equipment/instrumentation in accordance with test method requirements and perform pre-use and safety checks 3.2 Select and collect reagents in accordance with test method requirements 3.3 Prepare and label reagents in accordance with test method requirements


4 Extract, verify and manipulate biomolecules

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Produce/extract biomolecules from samples using appropriate isolation methods 4.2 Prevent contamination of samples by unwanted biomolecules 4.3 Recognise the presence of common inhibitors of biomolecular reactions and take corrective action 4.4 Quantify and qualify biomolecular yields from purified extractions 4.5 Use appropriate techniques to prepare and test a range of biomolecular samples 4.6 Use controls and reference standards to confirm the integrity of biomolecular sample preparation and procedures


5 Process data

Performance Criteria:

5.1 Record test data noting atypical observations 5.2 Ensure results are consistent with reference standards and expectations 5.3 Record and report results in accordance with test methods 5.4 Interpret trends in data and/or results and report out-of-specification or atypical results promptly to appropriate personnel 5.5 Troubleshoot basic procedure, reagent or equipment problems which have led to atypical data or results


6 Maintain a safe work environment

Performance Criteria:

6.1 Use established safe work practices and personal protective equipment (PPE) to ensure personal safety and that of other laboratory personnel 6.2 Minimise the generation of waste 6.3 Ensure the safe disposal of waste, including hazardous waste and tested samples 6.4 Clean, care for and store equipment and reagents


7 Report and communicate results

Performance Criteria:

7.1 Record approved data into workplace system 7.2 Keep accurate, traceable work records to protect the workplace's intellectual property (IP) rights 7.3 Maintain confidentiality and security of workplace information and laboratory data 7.4 Maintain equipment logs in accordance with workplace procedures

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

face to face theory classes

practical exercises

group work


online activities

Teaching Schedule

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Prescribed text: Human Heredity: Principles and Issues 8th Ed Cummings, M.R. Brookes/Cole

Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

Practical reports

written tests


research report & presentation

laboratory logbook

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Matrix

Available on Blackboard

Other Information

  • Assessment Information

    This course is graded in accordance with competency-based assessment, but which also utilise graded assessment


    CHD Competent with High Distinction (80 – 100%)

    CDI Competent with Distinction (70 – 79%)

    CC Competent with Credit (60 – 69%)

    CAG Competency Achieved – Graded (50 – 59%)

    NYC Not Yet Competent (0 – 49%)

    DNS Did Not Submit for assessment


    To pass the course you need to pass, on average, each type of assessment (exams, pracs, and assignments etc.) For example, if there are two exams you need to have an average of 50% to pass and you also need to have passed the other assessment types. You can’t make up marks from one type of assessment to another (e.g. pass the exams but fail the prac component).


    Late work that is submitted without an application for an extension (see below) will not be corrected.


    APPLICATION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME FOR SUBMISSION OF ASSESSABLE WORK - A student may apply for an extension of up to 7 days from the original due date. They must lodge the application form (available online at least 24 hours before the due date. The application is lodged with the School Admin Office on Level 6, Bdg 51. Students requiring longer extensions must apply for SPECIAL CONSIDERATION.


    For missed assessments such as exams- you (& your doctor if you are sick) must fill out a special consideration form. This form must be lodged online with supporting evidence prior to, or within, 48 hours of the scheduled time of examination


    A minimum of 80% attendance at practical classes is required to pass this course. If you are sick you should submit a medical certificate to 6th floor office addressed to the Program Coordinator. If you miss a practical class that is a prac report write up you need to provide a medical certificate (or other evidence) and arrange an alternative report with your teacher


    Plagiarism is the presentation of the work, idea or creation of another person as though it is your own. It is a form of cheating and is a very serious academic offence that may lead to expulsion from the University. Plagiarised material can be drawn from, and presented in, written, graphic and visual form, including electronic data and oral presentation. Plagiarism occurs when the origin of the material used is not appropriately cited. It also occurs through enabling plagiarism, which is the act of assisting or allowing another person to plagiarise or to copy your own work. Please make sure you consider this carefully in completing all your work and assessments in this course and if you are unsure about whether you might have plagiarised, seek help from your teacher.



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