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    Microbiology and Immunology staff are experts in a wide array of topics across their field. This tutorial-based paper explores diverse hot topics that reflect the active research interests of the presenting staff. You will develop in-depth knowledge of current issues, as well as critical analysis skills through the discussion of research literature. The tutorial format will provide you with the opportunity to work in small groups and develop oral presentation skills.

    About this paper

    Paper title Trends in Microbiology
    Subject Microbiology
    EFTS 0.1667
    Points 20 points
    Teaching period Semester 2 (On campus)
    Domestic Tuition Fees ( NZD ) $1,448.79
    International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.
    Students who are interested in this paper but are not majoring in Microbiology, Genetics, Biochemistry or Molecular Biotechnology are invited to discuss course content with the department.

    Appropriate for BSc(Hons), MSc and PGDipSci students majoring in Microbiology, Genetics, Biochemistry or Molecular Biotechnology.


    Teaching staff

    Convener: Professor Jemma Geoghegan
    Other lecturers:
    Associate Professor Mihnea Bostina
    Dr Daniel Pletzer
    Professor Bruce Russell

    Paper Structure

    This tutorial-based paper is divided into four modules of two weeks' duration. Generally the tutor will introduce the topic in week one, with the students (often in small groups) leading the discussion of original research papers in week two. The topics covered may change from year to year, reflecting topical issues in microbiology. Each tutorial will involve an assessment and there is no final exam.

    Modules in 2024 were:

    • Genomic epidemiology
    • Principles of bacteriophage structural organisation
    • Academic publishing and peer review process
    • One health strategy
    Teaching Arrangements

    This is a second semester paper with one tutorial per week for 8 weeks. The duration of tutorials will vary from one up to three hours.


    Textbooks are not required for this paper.
    Course readings are reviews and original papers from the literature. PDFs of these will be placed on Blackboard.

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

    Students who successfully complete this paper will:

    • Be able to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of topical issues in microbiology
    • Develop skills in critically evaluating the scientific literature and in experimental design
    • Develop communication and teamwork skills


    Semester 2

    Teaching method
    This paper is taught On Campus
    Learning management system


    Stream Days Times Weeks
    A1 Wednesday 09:00-10:50 29-35, 37-42
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