Course Title: Biochemical Engineering

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Biochemical Engineering

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


120H Civil, Environmental & Chemical Engineering


Sem 1 2008,
Sem 1 2009,
Sem 1 2010,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2012,
Sem 1 2013


City Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 2 2015,
Sem 2 2016


City Campus


171H School of Science


Sem 2 2017,
Sem 2 2018

Course Coordinator: Assoc Prof Donald Wlodkowic

Course Coordinator Phone: 03-9925-7157

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: Bundoora 223.1.32A

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

Biochemical Engineering is designed to introduce you to key aspects associated with biochemical processes. Engineers working in the process industries are making increased use of biological and, in particular microbial systems for production and environmental management. To optimise these processes, the engineer needs to understand the fundamentals of biological organisms, processes and their applications.

This course aims to introduce you to key concepts in microbiology and biochemistry that underpin their application in biochemical engineering, including coverage of microbial and biochemical applications with comparison to non-biological physico-chemical processes. To help you understand biological processes you should learn about the basic structure and function of microbial cells, and key aspects of biochemistry, including macromolecules, enzyme and key metabolic pathways and processes.  The course should conclude by demonstrating the application of microbial and biochemical processes within the context of engineering systems and processes. 


Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the Program Learning Outcomes for BH079 Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical Engineering) (Honours) and BH098 Bachelor of Science (Applied Chemistry)/Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical Engineering) (Honours)

PLO 1.1. Comprehensive, theory based understanding of the underpinning natural and physical sciences and the engineering fundamentals applicable to the engineering discipline.

PLO 1.3. In-depth understanding of specialist bodies of knowledge within the engineering discipline.

PLO 1.5. Knowledge of contextual factors impacting the engineering discipline.

PLO 3.2. Effective oral and written communication in professional and lay domains.

PLO 3.4. Professional use and management of information.


On successful completion of the course you should be able to:

  1. Describe and identify the main groups of microorganisms 
  2. Describe and compare the different structures and growth modes of diverse microorganisms 
  3. Describe and explain how (microbial) genetics determines microbial metabolic and functional activity. 
  4. Describe key biochemical and cellular components and biochemical pathways
  5. Explain how microorganisms and biochemical processes can be applied in engineered systems and processes. 
  6. Undertake a range of practical approaches associated with microbiology and biochemistry e.g. microbial isolation and culture, microscopy biochemical and genetic analyses and be able to record, describe, present and explain data


Overview of Learning Activities

    This course will be delivered by a series of lectures, laboratory practical sessions and online tests.

Total Study Hours

A total of 120 hours of study is expected during this course, comprising:

Teacher-guided activities (31 hours): of lectures/tutorials/workshops and practicals

Student-directed activities (109 hours): You are expected to study independently managing your own learning progress.


Overview of Learning Resources

  1. You should be able to access course information and learning material through Canvas (my Studies) via myRMIT. You should be provided with details of relevant texts and literature, library resources (including appropriate journals) and freely accessible internet sites. Additional material should be provided in class.

Overview of Assessment


Note that: This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment of this course comprises the following:

1. Two MCQ Online Quizzes: 20%

            This assessment supports CLOs 1-5

2. Practical Worksheets: 30%

           This assessment supports CLOs 1-3 & 6

3. End-of-semester Exam: 50%.

           This assessment supports CLOs 1-5