Course Title: Perform biological procedures

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2011

Course Code: ONPS5659C

Course Title: Perform biological procedures

School: 155T Vocational Health and Sciences

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5283 - Diploma of Laboratory Technology (Pathology Testing)

Course Contact: Amberlee Mitton

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 8053

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Suzie Politis


Nominal Hours: 130

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


MSL973004A - Perform aseptic techniques  AND  MSL973007A - Perform microscopic examination 


Course Description

This unit of competency covers the ability to interpret work requirements, prepare samples, conduct pre-use and calibration checks on equipment and perform routine biological procedures, including sample preparation. These procedures may involve several steps and are used to classify cell types, species and biologically active compounds by analysing their biological and chemical characteristics. This unit includes data processing, interpretation of results and troubleshooting obvious departures from standard procedures.


National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

MSL974006A Perform biological procedures


1. Interpret and schedule work requirements

Performance Criteria:

i Review work request to identify samples, required procedures and materials/equipment/instruments involved
ii Identify hazards and enterprise control measures
associated with the sample, preparation methods, reagents and/or equipment
iii Plan parallel work sequences to optimise throughput of multiple sets of samples (if appropriate)


2. Receive and prepare biological samples

Performance Criteria:

i Log samples using standard operating procedure
ii Record sample description, compare with specification and note and report discrepancies
iii Prepare samples in accordance with testing requirements
iv Ensure traceability of sample from receipt to reporting of results


3. Perform techniques that assist in the classification of a cell or species

Performance Criteria:

i Select suitable techniques in accordance with enterprise requirements and methods
ii Set up and use equipment and reagents in accordance with the method
iii Perform techniques in accordance with the method


4. Perform techniques that analyse biological activity

Performance Criteria:

i Select suitable techniques in accordance with enterprise requirements and methods
ii Set up and use equipment and reagents in accordance with the method
iii Perform techniques in accordance with the method


5. Process and interpret data

Performance Criteria:

i Record test data noting atypical observations 

ii  Construct calibration graphs, if appropriate, and compute results for all samples from these graphs 

iii Ensure calculated values are consistent with expectations 

iv Record and report results in accordance with enterprise procedures 

v Estimate and document uncertainty of measurement in accordance with enterprise procedures, if required 

vi Interpret trends in data and/or results and report out of specification or atypical results promptly to appropriate personnel 

vii Determine if obvious procedure or equipment problems have led to atypical data or results


6. Maintain a safe work environment

Performance Criteria:

i Use established safe work practices and personal protective equipment to ensure personal safety and that of other laboratory personnel
ii Minimise the generation of wastes
iii Ensure the safe disposal of biohazardous wastes


7. Maintain laboratory records

Performance Criteria:

   i Record approved data into enterprise system
ii Maintain confidentiality and security of enterprise information and laboratory data
iii Maintain equipment and calibration logs in accordance with enterprise procedures

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

• Teacher directed delivery of lessons
• Class Discussion
• Worksheets
• Laboratory experiments
• Record keeping of experiments
• Presentations
• Research activities
• Site Visits

Teaching Schedule

Wk. no. Wk. starts on


Prac. Activity/ work sheet

1 7/2 Cell structure wk. sheet 1
2 14/2 Cells and tissues Prac 1
3 21/2 Cell membrane  
4 28/2 Diffusion, osmosis, tonicity, plasmolysis Prac 2
5 7/3 Cell cycle, Mitosis  
6 14/3 Meiosis prac 3
7 21/3 Classification and characteristics wk. sheet 2
8 28/3 Ecosystem – food chain, web  
9 3/4 Mid sem exam  
10 11/4 Nutrient cycle, energy transfer  
11 18/4 Holiday  
11 25/4 photosynthesis,  
12 2/5 Digestive system, wk. sheet 3
13 9/5 Respiratory system, cellular respiration wk. sheet 4
14 16/5 Circulatory system wk. sheet 5
15 23/5 Urinary system wk. sheet 6
16 30/5 Nervous system & sensory organs wk. sheet 7
17 6/6 End of sem 1 exam  
18 13/6 Additional assessment  

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Introduction to General, Organic & Biochemistry (9th Edition) Bettelheim, Brown & March


Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

Assessments for this course typically consist of:
• Class activities
• Assignments
• Presentations
• Exams

Assessment Tasks

Semester 1

  • Term 1 exam: 15% 
  • Term 2 exam: 15% 
  • Practical reports/ assignments: 20%

Semester 2

  • Term 3 exam :15%
  • Term 4 exam: 15%
  • 4 Practical reports: 20%

Assessment Matrix

Course Overview: Access Course Overview