Courses & Units

Cell Biology, Genetics and Evolution KPZ164


Cell Biology, Genetics & Evolution is a core first year unit for BSc students majoring in Plant Science and important for any student studying Biological Sciences. Cell biology, genetics and evolution are fundamental to an understanding of the processes of life. In this unit, we introduce classical genetic and evolutionary theory as unifying explanations of life, examine the structure and function of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, including a discussion of the energy flow in photosynthesis, respiration, and metabolism. We introduce DNA structure and function from molecular to organism levels, and current applications of DNA technology. Laboratory practicals investigate cell properties, cytogenetics, enzyme function, genetic analysis of populations and DNA extraction.


Unit name Cell Biology, Genetics and Evolution
Unit code KPZ164
Credit points 12.5
College/School College of Sciences and Engineering
School of Natural Sciences
Discipline Biological Sciences|TIA - Research Institute
Coordinator Doctor Robert Wiltshire
Available as an elective? Yes
Delivered By University of Tasmania
Level Introductory


Location Study period Attendance options Available to
Hobart Semester 2 On-Campus International Domestic
Launceston Semester 2 On-Campus International Domestic


International students
Domestic students

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Key Dates

Study Period Start date Census date WW date End date
Semester 2 22/7/2024 16/8/2024 9/9/2024 27/10/2024

* The Final WW Date is the final date from which you can withdraw from the unit without academic penalty, however you will still incur a financial liability (refer to How do I withdraw from a unit? for more information).

Unit census dates currently displaying for 2024 are indicative and subject to change. Finalised census dates for 2024 will be available from the 1st October 2023. Note census date cutoff is 11.59pm AEST (AEDT during October to March).

About Census Dates

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe the basic principles of cell biology related to the structure and function of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.
  • Explain (i) how biological information is encoded in DNA, (ii) how DNA is replicated from cell to cell (mitosis) and from generation to generation (meiosis), and (iii) the behaviour of chromosomes in the cell cycles, and how that genetic information is transcribed into RNA and translated into proteins – the building blocks of life.
  • Explain the flow of energy in cells, the roles of enzymes and the processes of respiration.
  • Apply the principles of classical genetics in model systems to develop hypotheses and use basic statistical techniques to test those hypotheses.
  • Describe how DNA technology is being used in many aspects of life (agriculture, forensics, health, personal genomics and gene therapy).
  • Explain key processes of evolution and how they shape phylogenetic relationships that link living things.
  • Develop scientific communication skills in the accession, interpretation, and expression of scientific ideas.

Fee Information

Field of Education Commencing Student Contribution 1,3 Grandfathered Student Contribution 1,3 Approved Pathway Course Student Contribution 2,3 Domestic Full Fee 4
010903 $1,118.00 $1,118.00 not applicable $2,596.00

1 Please refer to more information on student contribution amounts.
2 Please refer to more information on eligibility and Approved Pathway courses.
3 Please refer to more information on eligibility for HECS-HELP.
4 Please refer to more information on eligibility for FEE-HELP.

If you have any questions in relation to the fees, please contact UConnect or more information is available on StudyAssist.

Please note: international students should refer to What is an indicative Fee? to get an indicative course cost.


Mutual Exclusions

You cannot enrol in this unit as well as the following:



Teaching Pattern

Weekly online modules of theoretical content with revisionary quizzes, 12 x Weekly 3-hour practical classes, Keynote address

AssessmentAssessment Task 11: Covid Evolution (2.5%)|Assessment Task 12: DNA extraction & purification (2.5%)|Assessment Task 1: Protists as model cells (2.5%)|Assessment Task 2: Mitosis and meiosis (2.5%)|Assessment Task 3: Translation and transcription (2.5%)|Assessment Task 4: Cell signalling (2.5%)|Assessment Task 6: Essay writing (2.5%)|Assessment Task 7: Classical genetics (2.5%)|Assessment Task 8: Genetic linkage (2.5%)|Assessment Task 9: Genetics workshop (2.5%)|Assessment Task10: Human variation (2.5%)|Week 5: Enzyme experiment (2.5%)|Assessment Task 13: Weekly online quizzes (10%)|Assessment Task 14: Essay (20%)|Exam (40%)
TimetableView the lecture timetable | View the full unit timetable



Required readings will be listed in the unit outline prior to the start of classes.

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