Applied and Environmental Microbiology

University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Applied and Environmental Microbiology

  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study

    Environmental Studies, Microbiology

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    MICR 221

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    Fundamental principles of environmental microbiology and microbial biotechnology for the generation of products and processes for industry and the environment including biofuels, bioremediation, recombinant proteins and the commercialisation of science.
    Microorganisms provide the tools and engines that drive many important biotechnological and environmental processes. From discoveries of new technologies based on natural systems to the use of these tools at industrial scales, this paper will introduce you to the many roles of microbes in everyday life. Tackling the world's emerging environmental problems and developing new technologies for industrial processes will require in-depth knowledge of the microbial makeup of the world, the application of processes catalysed by microbes for human benefit and the ability to bio-prospect and bio-engineer new tools from natural systems.

    Course Structure
    Lectures address the following issues:
    -How to develop and launch your own commercialisable biotechnology idea
    -How to generate biotechnological products using recombinant bacteria and viruses
    -What technologies are available for bioremediation of contaminated sites
    -What technologies are available for large-scale industrial processes, including fermentation
    -What technologies are available for generation of biofuels

    These concepts are further explored in laboratory exercises.

    -An individual commercialisation case study report 25% (mid-semester)
    -Lab assessment 10% (to be advised)
    -Final written exam 65%

    Learning Outcomes
    -Be able to demonstrate and utilise microbiological knowledge to solve real-world issues
    -Display the ability to integrate basic scientific knowledge into problem solving at a practical level
    -Develop an enhanced ability to communicate ideas about microbiology to a lay and specialised audience

    Text books are not required for this paper, but you will be directed to relevant scientific papers during lectures, and you may like to read:

    BR Glick and JJ Pasternak 2003 Molecular Biotechnology: Principles and applications of recombinant DNA. 3rd Edition, ASM Press,

    Which is held in the Science Library.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

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Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.