Red X iconGreen tick iconYellow tick icon


    Molecular aspects of viral entry, replication, and assembly in host cells. Mechanisms by which viruses manipulate the hosts to multiply and cause disease.

    Viruses are microscopic organisms that cause serious human, animal, and plant diseases worldwide. The COVID-19 pandemic is caused by a virus. Therefore, learning about the viruses is relevant more than ever. There is, and will be a constant need for experienced virologists who can identify viruses, diagnose viral diseases, and develop new and innovative antiviral drugs and vaccines. MICR 337 is the only 300-level course in a New Zealand university that is fully dedicated to in-depth learning about viruses and their interactions with their host. From this paper, you will acquire the knowledge essential for a career in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of viral diseases.

    About this paper

    Paper title Virology
    Subject Microbiology
    EFTS 0.15
    Points 18 points
    Teaching period Semester 2 (On campus)
    Domestic Tuition Fees ( NZD ) $1,173.30
    International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.
    GENE 221 or MICR 221 or MICR 223
    Schedule C

    Appropriate for BSc or BBiomedSc students studying Microbiology, Health Sciences and Public Health.


    Teaching staff

    Convenor: Professor Vernon Ward
    Other Lecturers:
    Dr Mihnea Bostina
    Dr Matloob Husain
    Dr Jen Robson

    Paper Structure

    Paper Structure:

    • Lectures - provide an integrated molecular understanding of virus-host interactions
    • Self-directed learning - enables students to research and present a contemporary virology topic
    • Laboratory classes - enable students to purify, characterise the growth and identify a virus


    • Group Presentations (5%) and essay (10%) - presentation in last/first weeks of July/August and essay due date on the Friday before mid-semester break
    • Two assignments based on laboratory experiments (20%) - due dates in first and second week of October
    • Final examination (65%) - as per the University calendar
    Teaching Arrangements

    Students may leave the lab for other commitments such as lectures and are able to plan their laboratory experiments to fit in with those commitments.

    • Principles of Virology, Flint et al (3rd, and 4th edition) - optional.
    • Introduction to Modern Virology, Dimmock et al (6th and 7th edition) - optional.
    • Web-based resources.
    Course outline

    Contact the course convenor for a course outline.

    Graduate Attributes Emphasised
    Communication, Critical thinking, Research, Teamwork.
    View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
    Learning Outcomes

    Students who successfully complete this paper will have:

    • In-depth understanding of virus infection and viral manipulation of host
    • Hands-on technical experience of virological research techniques
    • Ready to apply the knowledge in the workplace


    Semester 2

    Teaching method
    This paper is taught On Campus
    Learning management system


    Stream Days Times Weeks
    A1 Thursday 13:00-13:50 29-35, 37-42
    Friday 13:00-13:50 29-35, 37-42


    Stream Days Times Weeks
    Attend one stream from
    A1 Monday 14:00-17:50 37-40
    Tuesday 09:00-17:50 37-40
    Wednesday 09:00-09:50 37-40
    A2 Monday 14:00-17:50 37-40
    Tuesday 09:00-17:50 37-40
    Wednesday 10:00-10:50 37-40
    A3 Monday 14:00-17:50 37-40
    Tuesday 09:00-17:50 37-40
    Wednesday 11:00-11:50 37-40
    A4 Wednesday 14:00-17:50 37-40
    Thursday 09:00-12:50 37-40
    Thursday 14:00-17:50 37-40
    Friday 09:00-09:50 37-40
    A5 Wednesday 14:00-17:50 37-40
    Thursday 09:00-12:50 37-40
    Thursday 14:00-17:50 37-40
    Friday 10:00-10:50 37-40
    A6 Wednesday 14:00-17:50 37-40
    Thursday 09:00-12:50 37-40
    Thursday 14:00-17:50 37-40
    Friday 11:00-11:50 37-40
    Back to top