This unit of study introduces students to the core processes and strategies of modern biomedical research. Students will explore the principles of quantitative and qualitative research - critical analysis of scientific literature and data interpretation, and hypothesis formulation and testing. In particular, this unit provides an understanding of the fundamental concepts of probability and statistics required for experimental design and data analysis in the health sciences, including: normal distribution, the t statistic, p values and the use of statistical and graphing software packages such as Microsoft Excel, SPSS and Graph Pad. Ethical human and animal research practices, research funding frameworks, research protocols and management will also be considered, with particular emphasis on scientific integrity, fraud, intellectual property and reference management.

Unit details

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Credit points:
Unit code:


RBM2540 - Pathophysiology 2

RBM2800 - Cardiorespiratory and Renal Physiology

RBM2540 for HBBM RBM2800 for HBBS

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Critically appraise biomedical literature, specific examples of quantitative and qualitative research design, and isolated data sets;  
  2. Formulate a testable hypothesis and conceptually map a robust experimental design;  
  3. Recommend appropriate statistical analyses for hypothesis testing;  
  4. Apply and interpret a range of standard statistical methods to biomedical data sets, using statistical software packages;  
  5. Discriminate between examples of ethical and non-ethical research in human and animal experimental contexts and substantiate the importance of ethical conduct including regulatory requirements;  
  6. Commentate on the National and International framework for medical research funding and the processes via which research grants are allocated;  
  7. Describe and justify the requirement for the active management of intellectual property issues, scientific integrity and conflict of interest in a contemporary biomedical research context.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Test Workshop/class-based Tests (1500 words) 30%
Assignment Ethics Proposal (1500 words) 20%
Examination Final Exam (2 hours) 50%

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