Cell Biology

Study cell biology or cytology online and learn about the most basic unit of living matter. Learn terminology and understand chemical reactions within cells.

Course Code: BSC110
Fee Code: S2
Duration (approx) Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment
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BE PREPARED FOR A CAREER IN HEALTH AND SCIENCES

An essential foundation course for all people interested in human health, animal care and animal studies. The cell is the basic unit of life. Its knowledge is most essential to understand how life works for higher animals and plants.  You will learn about cell structure, the cells chemical composition, organelles, DNA, Meiosis and Mitosis, membranes, protein structure function and synthesis, catalysis, cellular communication, transport, tissue formation and more.

Student Comment: "the course was better than I expected" "I am studying a Bachelor of Health Science next year at university. I gained far more knowledge from this course than I expected." J.McEwan 

  • Enrol and commence studying anytime
  • Work at your own pace and focus on things of greater interest to you.
  • Great tutors , highly qualified, and with years of experience stand ready to support you every step of the way

Lesson Structure

There are 10 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction to Cells and Their Structure
  2. Cell Chemistry
  3. DNA, Chromosomes and Genes
  4. Cell Division: Meiosis and Mitosis
  5. Cell Membranes
  6. Protein Structure and Function
  7. Protein Synthesis
  8. Food, Energy, Catalysis and Biosynthesis
  9. Intracellular Compartments, Transport and Cell Communication
  10. The Cell Cycle and Tissue Formation

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.

Aims

  • Review basic cell structure and discuss the scope and nature of cell biology.
  • Describe the chemical components and processes of cells.
  • Describe the storage of genetic information within cells and how this information is passed on to the next generation.
  • Describe key concepts in molecular biology.
  • Discuss membrane structure and transport across cell membranes.
  • Discuss protein structure and function.
  • Describe and discuss protein synthesis.
  • Describe the significant processes involved in transfer and storage of energy in a cell.
  • Describe the significant processes that occur in cell communication and intracellular transport.
  • Describe the life cycle of cells and how they combine to create different types of tissues.

What are Cell Membranes? 

Membranes include any barrier surrounding and containing cells or cellular organelles. They are selectively permeable, allowing the transport of molecules and ions within and between cells. This facilitates the separation and regulation of metabolic processes. Plants, fungi and bacteria also have a cell wall outside the cell membrane.  The cell membrane is a plasma membrane.  Plasma membranes

Membranes are composed principally of lipids, particularly phospholipids (figure 1), which are simply lipids that contain phosphorus. Lipids usually compose about 50% of the membrane mass, although this varies according to the type of membrane. Proteins are the other major constituent of membranes, generally constituting around 25%, and up to 75% of the membrane mass.
 
Structure
 
The structure of membranes varies from organism to organism. Animal membranes consist primarily of two layers of phospholipids, collectively called the Phospholipid Bilayer. The bilayer consists of two rows of hydrophilic (water attracting) phospholipid ‘heads’ on the outer surfaces of the membrane, and the hydrophobic (water repelling) fatty acid tail facing inwards.  This bilayer is stable and spontaneously forms a barrier between two aqueous environments.

There are four major kinds of phospholipid in mammalian membranes and in addition to this the membranes contain glycolipids and cholesterol. An important property of lipid bilayers is that the individual lipid and protein molecules are free to rotate, and to move laterally. This has given rise to the Fluid Mosaic Model.  This is the current model for understanding the structure of cell membranes.  It is important to understand that the lipids and proteins inserted into the liquid bilayer are free to move on the 2D plane, thus the name fluid mosaic. 

Membrane proteins are inserted into the Phospholipid Bilayer, and have the role of effecting specific functions.

Proteins may be in the lipid bilayer in different ways:

  • Transmembrane or integral proteins expand though the entire membrane
  • Peripheral proteins which are which are indirectly associated with the cell and may be bound to the cell by either linkage with a fatty acid chain, or an oligosaccharide or through protein-protein interactions

 

 
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How can I start this course?

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Please note that if a student is being assisted by someone else (e.g. an employer or government subsidy), the body offering the assistance may set deadlines. Students in such situations are advised to check with their sponsor prior to enrolling. The nominal duration of a course is approximately how long a course takes to complete. A course with a nominal duration of 100 hours is expected to take roughly 100 hours of study time to complete. However, this will vary from student to student. Short courses (eg. 100 hrs duration) should be completed within 12 months of enrolment. Certificates, Advanced Certificates and Awards (eg. over 500 hours duration) would normally be completed within 3 -5 years of enrolment. Additional fees may apply if a student requires an extended period to complete.
If a student cannot submit their assignments for 6 months to ACS, they should advise the school to avoid cancellation of their student
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Our courses are designed to build knowledge, hands on skills and industry connections to help prepare you to work in the area, running your own business, professional development or as a base for further study.

This course has been designed to cover the fundamentals of the topic. It will take around 100 hours to complete, which includes your course reading, assignment work, research, practical tasks, watching videos and anything else that is contained in the course. Our short courses are a great way to do some professional development or to learn a new skill.

It’s up to you. The study hours listed in the course are a rough guide, however if you were to study a short course (100 hours) at 10 hours per week, you could finish the course in 10 weeks (just an example). Our courses are self-paced, so you can work through the courses in your own time. We recommend that you wait for your tutor to mark and return your assignment before your start your next one, so you get the benefits of their feedback.

The course consists of course notes, videos, set tasks for your practical work, online quizzes, an assignment for each lesson (that you receive feedback from your tutor from) and ends in an exam (which is optional, if would like to receive the formal award at the end), using our custom built Learning Management System - Login.Training.

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Each module (short course) is completed with one exam.

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More information is here

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Course Contributors

The following academics were involved in the development and/or updating of this course.

Lyn Quirk

M.Prof.Ed.; Adv.Dip.Compl.Med (Naturopathy); Adv.Dip.Sports Therapy
Over 30 years as Health Club Manager, Fitness Professional, Teacher, Coach and Business manager in health, fitness and leisure industries. As business owner and former department head fo

Jade Sciascia

Biologist, Business Coordinator, Government Environmental Dept, Secondary School teacher (Biology); Recruitment Consultant, Senior Supervisor in Youth Welfare, Horse Riding Instructor (part-completed) and Boarding Kennel Manager.
Jade has a B.Sc.Biol, Di





Tutors

Meet some of the tutors that guide the students through this course.

Jenny Bragg

MA (Professional Hospitality & Tourism Management), PGCE (Post Compulsory Education), BA (Hons) Hospitality Business Management.

Jenny has experience across many different business areas including marketing, operations management and human resources, her speciality fields are events, hospitality and tourism. She has worked in a number of different service sector organisations including hotels, restaurants, bars and specialist event providers. Jenny is a trained teacher and has worked with different educational bodies in the UK, as well as providing a consultancy service to the business and events sector.

Lyn Quirk

M.Prof.Ed.; Adv.Dip.Compl.Med (Naturopathy); Adv.Dip.Sports Therapy

Lyn has 35 years of experience in the Fitness, Health and Leisure Industries. She has a string of qualifications that are far too long to list here; being qualified and registered to teach, coach or instruct a wide range of different sports and other skills.

Lyn established and managed Health clubs at three major five star resorts on Australia's Gold Coast, including The Marriott. She was a department head for a large government vocational college (TAFE), and has conducted her own aquafitness business for many years. Lyn has among her other commitments worked as a tutor for ACS for almost 10 years, and over that time, participated in the development or upgrading of most courses in her fields of expertise.

Jan Kelly

Dip Hort (Burnley); Cert IV Assessment & Training

Jan has around 50 years of experience in horticulture, including over 20 years as owner/manager of a wholesale/retail nursery. She has worked in both Australia and New Guinea, in many different capacities, including as a horticultural consultant and landscape designer for domestic and development projects, with considerable experience in Conservation & Land Management. Jan has been a trainer of Amenity Horticulture and Landscape Design for 10 years.

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