BIOL30040 Scientific Writing for Biology

Academic Year 2021/2022

This module will enhance the development of scientific writing skills in undergraduate biology students. While the key principles of scientific writing will be covered (e.g. citation, structure, peer-review, plagiarism), the focus of this module is the improvement of the student’s individual writing skills. In order to help achieve this valuable outcome, each student will produce a literature review on a chosen topic in their biological degree programme. A number of continuous assessment exercises will be undertaken to assist in this writing process. Students will also perform a graded, peer-review exercise with their classmates, involving the giving and receiving of feedback.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this module, students will be able to:
- understand the fundamental principles of producing high quality scientific writing;
- use these principles to evaluate their own work and give formative feedback on peer-written work;
- write a scientific biological literature review on a given topic.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Key teaching and learning approaches used in the module are: active/task-based learning; peer and group work; on-line lectures/workshops; critical writing; reflective learning. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
AESC30010 - Scientific Writing & Review

Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Continuous Assessment: Peer-review exercise involving draft literature review work Week 7 n/a Graded No


Assignment: Literature review on specific biological topic Week 12 n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: Editing and re-submitting a previous piece of written work Week 4 n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Spring No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, on an activity or draft prior to summative assessment
• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Feedback given to individual students on both pieces of continuous assessment - one of which will be a draft version of part of the final literature review. Class feedback given on these assignments to highlight common problems. Individual feedback on final, graded literature review also provided.

Name Role
Dr Simone Ciuti Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Mr Zixia Huang Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Dr Julia Jones Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Dr Susanne Schilling Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Professor Jeremy Simpson Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Professor Emma Teeling Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Assoc Professor Tom Wilkinson Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - Autumn: All Weeks Thurs 11:00 - 11:50