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Brain in Health & Disease - BIO00007H

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  • Department: Biology
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Chris Elliott
  • Credit value: 10 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2018-19

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Spring Term 2018-19

Module aims

This module covers the role of toxins, genes and other factors which lead to the major diseases of the nervous system, outlines their symptoms, setting them in the context of normal CNS function. Lectures include diseases of the neuromuscular junction and high-profile CNS diseases (e.g. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s & Alzheimer's disease), along with some less well-known diseases (e.g. Lysosomal Storage Disease). We will explore the extent to which the cause of the diseases are known, their anatomical and physiological consequences, treatment, and social impact. We will also investigate the mechanisms of pain perception and relief.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the vertebrate brain, the impact of toxins on neural function and the main diseases of the nervous system.
  • Show understanding of the molecular, cellular, physiological and anatomical basis of pain perception, animal models of nocioception, and the action and social consequences of current and future therapies.
  • Draw together information from different lectures to provide a cohesive view of anatomical, cellular, molecular, physiological and behavioural approaches to the understanding the (dys)function of the brain.
  • Design experiments related to brain function in health and disease.
  • Explain the major social consequences of neurodegenerative disease.
  • Explain the neural basis of neurodegeneration (to expert and lay audiences).


Task Length % of module mark
University - closed examination
Brain in Health and Disease
2 hours 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
University - closed examination
Brain in Health and Disease
2 hours 100

Module feedback

Feedback on your progress is important to your learning process; Stage 3 and 4 scripts are not returned to you, but you will be given feedback on your January examinations by the middle of the spring term and will also have an opportunity to view the examiners’ comments on your scripts at the end of the spring and summer terms.

Module marks are made available to both you and your supervisor via your eVision account as soon as the marks are available, by week 6 of the spring term and week 8 of the summer term. You are expected to discuss your performance and progress with your supervisor in your mid-spring term and end of summer term supervisory meetings.

A histogram of all module marks is produced and posted on the examinations notice board outside Biology Student Services.

Specimen answers are posted on the web: by comparing the specimen answers with your own, you should obtain a clear idea of what was expected of you. For each module the markers will also give general feedback on how well the questions were answered and point out any standard errors that students may have made.

Indicative reading

These are available through the VLE module site.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): changes to courses

The 2020/21 academic year will start in September. We aim to deliver as much face-to-face teaching as we can, supported by high quality online alternatives where we must.

Find details of the measures we're planning to protect our community.

Course changes for new students