DCU Home | Our Courses | Loop | Registry | Library | Search DCU

Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Practical Biochemistry Laboratory
Module Code BE261
School School of Biotechnology
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Phil Cummins
Semester 2: Phil Cummins
Autumn: Phil Cummins
Module TeachersPaul Cahill
Paula Meleady
Phil Cummins
Greg Foley
Jacinta Morrison
Jianghui Meng
Denise Harold
Linda Holland
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 5
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None
Coursework Only

To equip students with hands-on expertise in biochemical assay techniques, to critically evaluate experimental results, and to generate succinct laboratory reports. The module incorporates a combination of in-person and online delivery approaches.

Learning Outcomes

1. Comprehend the underlying principles for assaying proteins, sugars and lipids
2. Construct standard curves for quantitative analytical purposes
3. Quantitatively analyse enzyme activity and kinetic parameters (e.g. Vmax, Km)
4. Apply protein purification principles (e.g. salt precipitation, ion-exchange and gel filtration chromatography's) to the extraction of an enzyme from a crude sample
5. Quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of a protein purification process
6. Engage with safe laboratory practices in terms of conduct, attire, risk minimization, disposal etc.
7. Evaluate analytical results and generate concise scientific reports

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Tutorial1Laboratory safety
Laboratory24In-person laboratory experiments (x5), Online experiments (x4)
Independent Study73Pre-laboratory preparation and online quiz, analysis of data, consultation of literature, study
Directed learning27Laboratory report preparation
Total Workload: 125

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Content 1 (in-lab)
Measurement of glucose concentration: GOD-POD method

Content 2 (in-lab)
Measurement of alkaline phosphatase activity: pH optimum

Content 3 (in-lab)
Measurement of protein concentration: UV method

Content 4 (online)
Measurement of protein concentration in solution: Bradford method

Content 5 (in-lab)
Lipid analysis: Acid value determination of a lipid

Content 6 (online)
Protein purification - alkaline phosphatase: Day 1 - Solvent precipitation, Day 2 - Anion exchange chromatography, Day 3 - Size exclusion chromatography

Learning activities (transversal skills, novel pedagogies, critical thinking and problem solving)
In-lab: Quantitative problem solving and numerical skills, report writing skills and critical evaluation of results, teamwork. Online: Pre-lab quizzes and gamification strategies (e.g. biochemistry crosswords) to promote laboratory preparedness, virtual experiments employing simulated data-sets.

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
Loop QuizEnd of module online MCQ25%n/a
Report(s)Laboratory reports55%n/a
Loop QuizPre-laboratory online quiz20%n/a
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 2
Indicative Reading List

    Other Resources

    Programme or List of Programmes
    ASBSc in Analytical Science
    BPBSc in Bioprocessing
    BTBSc in Biotechnology
    GCBBSc in Genetics & Cell Biology

    My DCU | Loop | Disclaimer | Privacy Statement