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Study information

Programme Specification for the 2024/5 academic year

BSc (Hons) Intercalated Infectious Disease

1. Programme Details

Programme nameBSc (Hons) Intercalated Infectious Disease Programme codeUFS1BIOBIO02
Study mode(s)Full Time
Academic year2024/5
Campus(es)Streatham (Exeter)
NQF Level of the Final Award6 (Honours)

2. Description of the Programme

The one year BSc (Hons) Intercalated Infectious Disease programme is only available to selected students who are undertaking a medical degree at the University of Exeter or another appropriate medical institution, and have completed at least the first two years (240 credits) of their medical school programme (see University Regulations Governing Honours Degrees, Regulation 1.2, Section 5).

Understanding of the molecular basis of infection and the interaction between microorganisms and their hosts is critical if we are to conquer the threat they pose to public health and food security.  In this programme you will explore the diverse repertoire of cellular strategies that microbes use to defend themselves against host immune systems and gain better insight into the therapeutic agents we currently employ to control infections.  In parallel, you will explore how the immune system defends the host against pathogen invasion and consider the fundamental cellular processes that contribute to the expression of disease.  To give a broad overview, the topics will be explored in the context of both bacterial and fungal pathogens. The programme provides access to our specialist modules delivered to students in the second or final year of our three year undergraduate programmes, and module availability closely reflects the research strengths of Bioscience academics. Many modules are seminar-based, and these provide valuable new perspectives to topics you may already have completed as part of your main programme of study, allowing you to explore complementary areas in greater detail. The overall programme offers an innovative approach to learning that includes supportive small-group learning and tutorials as well as the chance to engage with research at a practical level in our laboratories.

3. Educational Aims of the Programme

The general aims of this programme are:

To provide education intended to give you competence in the basic science underlying infectious disease, and to encourage you to develop your intellectual capabilities within an institution that is committed to advancing research, scholarship and learning, and to disseminating knowledge.

More specifically, this programme aims:

  • To provide you with knowledge and understanding of the biologic mechanisms underlying infectious disease from the fundamentals to the frontiers of the subject.
  • To provide you with the basic scientific, intellectual, and practical training that will prepare you for lifelong learning, and, if you wish, for a career in infectious disease research.
  • To enable you to experience a supportive learning environment that fosters your academic and personal development.

4. Programme Structure

5. Programme Modules

You may take optional modules as long as any necessary prerequisites have been satisfied, where the timetable allows and if you have not already taken the module in question or an equivalent module. Details of the modules currently offered may be obtained from the College website

You are also permitted to take the five, ten or 15 credit Professional Development Experience modules BIO3910, BIO3911 or BIO3912. Registration on these modules is subject to a competitive application process. If taken, these modules will not count towards progression or award calculation.

Stage 1

The programme constituents vary slightly depending on the stage of medical training at which you are undertaking your intercalated degree and reflect anticipated differences in the level of prior learning.

For those students entering the programme with ≥ 240 credits (equivalent to at least two years of medical school training): 60 credits of compulsory modules,  60 credits of optional modules

For those students entering the programme with ≥ 480 credits (equivalent to at least four years of medical school training): 45 credits of compulsory modules,  75 credits of optional modules

Please note that all modules are subject to change as they align with staff research interests. The following lists should be considered as indicative rather than definitive.

a The research project must be on a topic related to infectious disease.

b BIO2101 is a compulsory, condonable module for those students entering with at least two years medical school training. Those students with at least four years medical school training cannot take this module.

Compulsory Modules

CodeModule Credits Non-condonable?
BIO3096 Biosciences Research Project [See note a above]45Yes
BIO2101 Advanced Microbiology [See note b above]15No
BIO3078 Cellular Basis of Immunity 15No
BIO3079 Molecular Basis of Infection 15No

Optional Modules

CodeModule Credits Non-condonable?
BIO3041 Pharmacology and Medicinal Chemistry 15No
BIO3047 Advanced Applications of Physiology 15No
BIO3077 Frontiers in Molecular Cell Biology 15No
BIO3082 Science Communication 15No
BIO3086 Cell Biology of Disease 15No
BIO3093 Energy Metabolism 15No

6. Programme Outcomes Linked to Teaching, Learning and Assessment Methods

Intended Learning Outcomes
A: Specialised Subject Skills and Knowledge

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)
On successfully completing this programme you will be able to:
Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) will be...
...accommodated and facilitated by the following learning and teaching activities (in/out of class):...and evidenced by the following assessment methods:

1. Describe in detail essential facts and theory underlying infectious disease.
2. Describe and critically evaluate aspects of current research in infectious disease with reference to reviews and research articles.

Within the programme, teaching and learning activities are designed to encourage a progressive acquisition of subject knowledge and skills by moving from study methods that have a greater degree of support and assistance towards more independent learning.

The programme uses a diverse range of teaching and learning methods: lectures; seminars; a research project or dissertation and group work.

Typically a 15 credit module would consist of 15-20 x 1 hour lectures in which the core subject material will be provided. The lecture notes will be available via the University of Exeter Virtual Learning Environment and references to outside reading will be made available.

The research project will normally take place in the 1st term where the student will undertake a project in a research group followed by production of a written report in the 2nd term; alternatively one dissertation will be written in terms 1 and 2.

The programme uses a diverse range of assessment methods such as: essay examinations; short answer and multiple choice tests (MCQ); practical work and reports; quantitative (numerical) problems; project report or dissertation; oral presentations.

Intended Learning Outcomes
B: Academic Discipline Core Skills and Knowledge

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)
On successfully completing this programme you will be able to:
Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) will be...
...accommodated and facilitated by the following learning and teaching activities (in/out of class):...and evidenced by the following assessment methods:

3. With limited guidance, deploy established techniques of analysis, investigation, and enquiry within the field of infectious disease.

See above.

See above

Intended Learning Outcomes
C: Personal/Transferable/Employment Skills and Knowledge

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)
On successfully completing this programme you will be able to:
Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) will be...
...accommodated and facilitated by the following learning and teaching activities (in/out of class):...and evidenced by the following assessment methods:

4. Communicate ideas effectively and professionally by written, oral and visual means.
5. Study autonomously and undertake projects with minimum guidance.
6. Select and properly manage information drawn from books, journals, and the internet.
7. Interact effectively in a group.

See above.

See above.

7. Programme Regulations


8. College Support for Students and Students' Learning

Biosciences offers every student meetings each term with a personal tutor. The role of personal tutors is to provide you with advice and support for the duration of the programme and extends to providing you with details of how to obtain support and guidance on personal difficulties such as accommodation, financial difficulties and sickness. You can also make an appointment to see individual teaching staff. The Biosciences website/fileserver includes the student handbook and learning materials. Every student has access to computers and printers within Biosciences. Each student can expect reasonable access to all teaching staff through appointments. The Biosciences Student/Staff Liaison Committee enables students and staff to jointly participate in the management and review of the teaching and learning provision.

9. University Support for Students and Students' Learning

10. Admissions Criteria

11. Regulation of Assessment and Academic Standards

12. Indicators of Quality and Standards

The programme is not subject to accreditation and/ or review by professional and statutory regulatory bodies (PSRBs).

13. Methods for Evaluating and Improving Quality and Standards

14. Awarding Institution

University of Exeter

15. Lead College / Teaching Institution

Faculty of Health and Life Sciences

16. Partner College / Institution

Partner College(s)

Not applicable to this programme

Partner Institution

Not applicable to this programme.

17. Programme Accredited / Validated by


18. Final Award

BSc (Hons) Intercalated Infectious Disease

19. UCAS Code


20. NQF Level of Final Award

6 (Honours)

21. Credit

CATS credits ECTS credits

22. QAA Subject Benchmarking Group

23. Dates

Origin Date


Date of last revision