Offered to students admitted to Year 1 in ALL
Major/Minor ALL
Course Type
Offer in 2021 - 2022 Y N
Course Code BIOL1110
Date2022/01/20 07:26
Enquiry for Course Details
BIOL1110 From molecules to cells (6 credits) Academic Year 2021
Offering Department Biological Sciences Quota 382
Course Co-ordinator Dr G Y W Chan, Biological Sciences < gywchan@hku.hk >
Teachers Involved (Dr C S C Lo,Biological Sciences)
(Dr G Y W Chan,Biological Sciences)
Course Objectives This course aims to provide basic conceptual understanding of the biology of molecules and cells to underpin later studies in applied biology, genetics, biochemistry, nutrition, biotechnology, microbiology, plant and animal physiology and developmental biology.
Course Contents & Topics An issue-based approach will be adopted to enable students to integrate basic concepts in molecules and cells and to inspire further investigation through the exploration of contemporary biological issues. The course is divided into 4 parts and the following is a list of some of the questions to be asked and discussed:
Genes and inheritance: How do children resemble their parents? What is the central dogma of biology? What are the rules of genetic inheritance? What determines gender and sexuality? Why is that children resemble, but not identical to, their parents? What happen if some genes are non-functional or mutated?
Metabolism and Health: How are diets related to good health? Do all humans have the same dietary requirements? Why can't we live without plants?
Cells and cell division: What are the common features in a cell? How do cells communicate and assemble themselves to form tissues and organs? What is a cell cycle and how it is regulated? What happens if cell-cycle control system goes wrong? How newly formed cells commit themselves for differentiation?
Genetic engineering and modern biology: To what extent can genes be modified? Is gene therapy the future of medicines? Is genetically modified food safe for consumption? What are the Genome Projects and why have they been important?
Course Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this course, students should be able to:

CLO 1 understand the relationships between genes in a genome and the inherited phenotypes expressed in a living organism
CLO 2 learn the underlying principle on how mutation of a gene can lead to the development of a genetic disease
CLO 3 understand the importance of dietary intake of biomolecules in relationship to good health
CLO 4 describe various stages in a cell division and that disturbance of this process may result in cancer development
CLO 5 describe concepts used in genetic engineering
CLO 6 know some applications of genetic engineering in gene therapy and production of genetically modified food
Pre-requisites
(and Co-requisites and
Impermissible combinations)
Not for students who have passed in BIOC1600, or have already enrolled in this course.

Students who wish to take this course are expected to have taken HKDSE Biology and/or Chemistry or equivalent.  For students without HKDSE Chemistry, they are encouraged to take CHEM1041 concurrently or before.

Not for students having taken any level 2 (or above) Biomedical Sciences (BBMS) or Biochemistry (BIOC) or Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) course.  Students having taken level 2 BBMS/BIOC/MBBS course should take the replacement course for BIOL1110 in any regular major offered by the School of Biological Sciences.
Course Status with Related Major/Minor /Professional Core 2021 Major in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2021 Major in Biological Sciences ( Core/Compulsory )
2021 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2021 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity ( Core/Compulsory )
2021 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2021 Major in Food & Nutritional Science ( Core/Compulsory )
2021 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Core/Compulsory )
2021 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2021 Minor in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2021 Minor in Food & Nutritional Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
2021 Minor in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Disciplinary Elective )
2021 Minor in Plant Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
2020 Major in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2020 Major in Biological Sciences ( Core/Compulsory )
2020 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2020 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity ( Core/Compulsory )
2020 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2020 Major in Food & Nutritional Science ( Core/Compulsory )
2020 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Core/Compulsory )
2020 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2020 Minor in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2020 Minor in Food & Nutritional Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
2020 Minor in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Disciplinary Elective )
2020 Minor in Plant Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
2019 Major in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2019 Major in Biological Sciences ( Core/Compulsory )
2019 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2019 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity ( Core/Compulsory )
2019 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2019 Major in Food & Nutritional Science ( Core/Compulsory )
2019 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Core/Compulsory )
2019 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2019 Minor in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2019 Minor in Food & Nutritional Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
2019 Minor in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Disciplinary Elective )
2019 Minor in Plant Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
2018 Major in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2018 Major in Biological Sciences ( Core/Compulsory )
2018 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2018 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity ( Core/Compulsory )
2018 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2018 Major in Food & Nutritional Science ( Core/Compulsory )
2018 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Core/Compulsory )
2018 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2018 Minor in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2018 Minor in Food & Nutritional Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
2018 Minor in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Disciplinary Elective )
2018 Minor in Plant Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
2017 Major in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2017 Major in Biological Sciences ( Core/Compulsory )
2017 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2017 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity ( Core/Compulsory )
2017 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2017 Major in Food & Nutritional Science ( Core/Compulsory )
2017 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Core/Compulsory )
2017 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) ( Core/Compulsory )
2017 Minor in Biochemistry ( Disciplinary Elective )
2017 Minor in Food & Nutritional Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
2017 Minor in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology ( Disciplinary Elective )
2017 Minor in Plant Science ( Disciplinary Elective )
Course to PLO Mapping 2021 Major in Biochemistry < PLO 1,2,3,4,5 >
2021 Major in Biological Sciences < PLO 1 >
2021 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
2021 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity < PLO 1,3,4 >
2021 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) < PLO 1,2,4 >
2021 Major in Food & Nutritional Science < PLO 1,2,3 >
2021 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology < PLO 1,2 >
2021 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
2020 Major in Biochemistry < PLO 1,2,3,4,5 >
2020 Major in Biological Sciences < PLO 1 >
2020 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
2020 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity < PLO 1,3,4 >
2020 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) < PLO 1,2,4 >
2020 Major in Food & Nutritional Science < PLO 1,2,3 >
2020 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology < PLO 1,2 >
2020 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
2019 Major in Biochemistry < PLO 1,2,3,4,5 >
2019 Major in Biological Sciences < PLO 1,2 >
2019 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
2019 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity < PLO 1,3,4 >
2019 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) < PLO 1,2,4 >
2019 Major in Food & Nutritional Science < PLO 1,2,3 >
2019 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology < PLO 1,2 >
2019 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
2018 Major in Biochemistry < PLO 1,2,3,4,5 >
2018 Major in Biological Sciences < PLO 1,2 >
2018 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
2018 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity < PLO 1,3,4 >
2018 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) < PLO 1,2,4 >
2018 Major in Food & Nutritional Science < PLO 1 >
2018 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology < PLO 1,2 >
2018 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
2017 Major in Biochemistry < PLO 1,2,3,4,5 >
2017 Major in Biological Sciences < PLO 1,2 >
2017 Major in Biological Sciences (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
2017 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity < PLO 1,3,4 >
2017 Major in Ecology & Biodiversity (Intensive) < PLO 1,2,4 >
2017 Major in Food & Nutritional Science < PLO 1 >
2017 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology < PLO 1,2 >
2017 Major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (Intensive) < PLO 1,2 >
Offer in 2021 - 2022 Y        1st sem    2nd sem    Examination Dec    May     
Offer in 2022 - 2023 Y
Course Grade A+ to F
Grade Descriptors
A Demonstrate thorough mastery at an advanced level of extensive knowledge required for attaining all the course learning outcomes. Show strong analytical and critical abilities and logical thinking, with evidence of original thought, and ability to apply knowledge to a wide range of complex, familiar and unfamiliar situations. Apply highly effective organizational skills. Writings consistently demonstrate informed, thoughtful intellectual engagement with broad range of relevant concepts.
B Demonstrate substantial command of a broad range of knowledge required for attaining at least most of the course learning outcomes. Show evidence of analytical and critical abilities and logical thinking, and ability to apply knowledge to familiar and some unfamiliar situations. Apply effective organizational skills. Writings mostly demonstrate informed, thoughtful intellectual engagement with broad range of relevant concepts.
C Demonstrate general but incomplete command of knowledge required for attaining most of the course learning outcomes. Show evidence of some analytical and critical abilities and logical thinking, and ability to apply knowledge to most familiar situations. Apply moderately effective organizational skills. Writings mostly indicate informed, intellectual engagement with concepts or theories but not always with sufficient depth, breadth or understanding.
D Demonstrate partial but limited command of knowledge required for attaining some of the course learning outcomes. Show evidence of some coherent and logical thinking, but with limited analytical and critical abilities. Show limited ability to apply knowledge to solve problems. Apply limited or barely effective organizational skills. Writings indicate some intellectual engagement with concepts or theories but mostly at a superficial level.
Fail Demonstrate little or no evidence of command of knowledge required for attaining the course learning outcomes. Lack of analytical and critical abilities, logical and coherent thinking. Show very little or no ability to apply knowledge to solve problems. Organizational skills are minimally effective or ineffective. Writings reveal an absence of intellectual engagement with concepts or theories. Writings are irrelevant or superficial.
Course Type Lecture-based course
Course Teaching
& Learning Activities
Activities Details No. of Hours
Lectures 36
Tutorials 12
Reading / Self study 100
Assessment Methods
and Weighting
Methods Details Weighting in final
course grade (%)
Assessment Methods
to CLO Mapping
Examination 50 CLO 1,2,3,4,5,6
Test 50 CLO 1,2,3,4,5,6
Required/recommended reading
and online materials
NIL
Course Website http://moodle.hku.hk/
Additional Course Information Quota in 1st Semester: 210
Quota in 2nd Semester: 172
Back  /  Home