Human Genetics

Unit code: HBM2106 | Study level: Undergraduate
(Generally, 1 credit = 10 hours of classes and independent study.)
St Albans
HBM1002 - Biological Systems
RBF1320 - Biology 2
HBM1002 (biomed students) OR RBF1320 (science students)
(Or equivalent to be determined by unit coordinator)


This unit introduces students to concepts and methods in human genetics with a major focus on disease. Advances in human genetics in the last decade have had a major impact on medical science from early diagnosis through to targeted therapies. Fundamental genetic principles will be explored including genome structure, gene regulation, genetic heterogeneity and inheritance. Students will apply their knowledge to the understanding of the molecular mechanisms, diagnosis and screening of both monogenetic and multifactorial disorders.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Analyse the structure of the human genome and determine the function of its various components;
  2. Interpret the molecular processes involved in gene expression, including epigenetics;
  3. Articulate the nature of mutations and how genetic instability contributes to mutation;
  4. Evaluate molecular defects involved in disease states at the chromosomal or individual gene level;
  5. Assess methods used to detect mutations and diagnose genetic diseases.

Study as a single unit

This unit can be studied on its own, without enrolling in a full degree.

Learn more about single units of study at VU


For Melbourne campuses

Assessment type: Exercise
Grade: 10%
Group worksheet (500 words)
Assessment type: Laboratory Work
Grade: 30%
Laboratory work and reports (750 words each, 1500 words in total)
Assessment type: Case Study
Grade: 30%
Two case studies based assessments (15% each, 30mins each)
Assessment type: Assignment
Grade: 30%
Group work on public-facing information resources (i.e. Blog, Factsheet, Podcast, etc., 1200-1500 words equivalent)

Required reading

Required readings will be made available on VU Collaborate.

As part of a course

This unit is not compulsory for any specific course. Depending on the course you study, this unit may be taken as an elective.

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