MICR 320 Microbes in Health and Disease
MICR 320, Microbes in Health and Disease, will focus on the roles of microbes in health (human microbiome) and disease (pathogens). The molecular mechanisms of bacterial/viral virulence and the host response will be examined in order to develop an in depth understanding of the etiology of infectious diseases and the benefits derived from the human microbiome.
The course is divided into three phases that are focused on exploring basic concepts relating to the roles of microbes in health and disease. Phase 1 will cover fundamental concepts such as the role of the human microbiome in health, and how pathogen-specific virulence factors contribute to the etiology of infectious diseases. Phase 2 will focus on using this knowledge to study specific infectious disease cases and phase 3 will take a more global perspective, examining the epidemiology of infectious diseases, current issues with antimicrobial resistance, and the impact of newly emerging pathogens.
*Previously MICR 382, Microbes in Health and Disease
Minimum 3rd year (Level 3) standing and one of (MICR 271/3.0; MICR 221/3.0) and one of (BMED 386/3.0; MICR 386/3.0; MICR 360/3.0)
Online format with materials, communication, and assignment submissions all via Daylight (onQ)
After completing MICR 320, students will be able to:
- Describe and apply knowledge of how microbes interact with the human host in relation to health (human microbiome) and disease (microbial pathogens). Organize & assess information from various sources to critically and appropriately problem solve.
- Work collaboratively in a small group setting to apply accumulated knowledge in critical evaluation of the factors that contribute to the etiology of infectious diseases.
- Integrate the information taught in the course to provide a broad-based understanding of the global impact of microbes on health and disease. Reflect upon and track how accumulated knowledge is influencing perception of human health and infectious disease.
- Reflect upon and document learning styles and strategies best suited to optimize depth and breadth of learning.
Assessments 1-3 will be graded using marking rubrics.
Assessment 1 – Module Quizzes (15%)
Students will conduct ‘check-points’ in their understanding of course materials by successfully completing a review quiz after learning from their online modules. Students are expected to recall, connect, apply, and extend the knowledge gained from the modules, using content to motivate external research as required. Successful completion of this assessment will demonstrate students’ understanding of the basics of the interaction of microbes and their human hosts leading to health and disease and the ability to apply this information to new situations.
Assessment 2 – Group Case-Study Assignment (20%)
Students will have two small group assignments; both of which will be based on a case-study analysis. The first (10%) will involve using an infectious disease case description to determine the cause of the disease and submitting a report of the process used to solve the case, while the second (10%) will be to create an infectious disease case description based on knowledge of a particular pathogen. Students will initially write a draft analysis individually. Then in small groups, students will exchange their reports and review other student’s reports, providing comments and suggestions for improvement. The reports will be reworked into one final report for each assignment and submitted for assessment. The individual draft reports, the reviewer’s comments, and final drafts will be assessed.
Assessment 3 – Learning Portfolio (10%)
During the course of the semester, students will create a repository for answers to questions posed about topics before they are covered in detail within the online modules, and then again, after the topic is covered. The goal is for students to reflect on what they have learned, and how they have learned it, in order to better understand their personal learning skills and how these may change during the course. This ideas, connections, extensions method of self-evaluation will prepare students to become independent, critical thinkers – important skills in further education and the professional realm.
Assessment 4 & 5 – Midterm (20%) and Final Exam (40%)
The exams will consist of short, medium and essay-type questions, aimed at problem solving and demonstration of assimilation and understanding of knowledge learned throughout the course. Select case study analyses that were submitted for assessment will be posted as part of the course materials and included in the final exam assessment.
9–10 hours a week (108–120 hours per term).
- MICR 320 course notes via modules posted online.
- Relevant primary literature will be provided by the instructor pertaining to specific modules.