Course Title: Viruses and Infections

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Viruses and Infections

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


171H School of Science


Sem 1 2017


City Campus


173H School of Health and Biomed


Sem 1 2019

Course Coordinator: Dr Michael Roche

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 7068

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 223.02.021c

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

Aseptic technique and basic laboratory skills are a required pre- requisite for you to be able to perform the practical classes. These skills are not taught in this class.

Course Description

This course aims to provide students with an understanding of selected viral diseases of humans and animals and their laboratory diagnosis. Topic areas include: Basic virology, viral replication, molecular diagnosis of viral infections, viral vaccines, viral immunology, antiviral drugs, selected viral diseases of humans and animals, and biosecurity.

The practical sessions will be held in a block and will have you participating in classical viral propagation and diagnostic techniques.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes for MC158 Master of Laboratory Medicine:

  • PLO1. Knowledge capability - Have a comprehensive understanding of key scientific principles underpinning laboratory medicine and have developed a systemic knowledge of core cellular and molecular processes underlying health and disease. Have advanced knowledge of two core clinical speciality disciplines of laboratory medicine and advanced management skills.
  • PLO 5. Reflective capability - Ability to reflect and integrate based upon experiences in relation to theory and work practices to demonstrate creativity in the identification of problems and their solutions. Identify personal skill deficiencies that require further professional development.

On successful completion of this course you will be able to:

  1. Discuss the classification of viruses that cause human disease
  2. Discuss the aetiology, pathophysiology and laboratory diagnosis of various viral diseases of humans.
  3. Compare and contrast types of viral vaccines and antiviral therapies used in humans.
  4. Perform classical virological techniques and calculations for determining viral and antibody titres.
  5. Appraise the scientific literature on an emerging viral disease.

Overview of Learning Activities

Students will be guided through the subject by lectures and by a practical course to achieve competence in technical skills. The normal weekly lecture load will be 2 hours. The practical course will be offered as an intensive program in a block at a time when no other classes are timetabled. Four tutorials over the semester will support your learning and encourage deeper understanding of virology.

Students have the role of active learners and have the responsibility to attend and actively participate in all planned student learning experiences, i.e. lectures, tutorials and practical classes, read all relevant references pointed out during planned student learning experiences and undertake such other private study as will benefit their learning towards the objectives of the subject.

Student feedback on the course content and evaluation processes will be obtained anonymously and voluntarily at the end of the semester. This will be used by the course team to revise the course and for discussion by the team at the course review meeting at the end of each year.

Overview of Learning Resources

In addition to prescribed and recommended textbooks, references to specific learning materials will be given during lectures and practical classes or will be displayed on the course Canvas site, accessed through myRMIT.

Overview of Assessment

This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task 1: Prac report (~1500 words)

Weighting 15%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1 & 4

Assessment Task 2: Prac Exam

Weighting 10%

This assessment task supports CLO 4

Assessment Task 3: Supervisor Report

Weighting 10%

This assessment task supports CLO 4

Assessment Task 4: Canvas Quizzes

Weighting 10%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2 & 3

Assessment Task 5: Tutorial Quizzes

Weighting 15%

This assessment task supports CLOs 2 & 5

Assessment Task 6: Final examination

Weighting 40%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2, 3 & 4