Advanced Certificate in Principles of Protein Structure
PPS Logo

Principles of Protein Structure Using the Internet

Birkbeck College (University of London) Advanced Certificate Course

Aims of the Course

The course is designed to provide students with an understanding both of the fundamentals and of recent and current research on the structure of proteins. All teaching for the course will take place on the Internet and students will be given weekly work assignments, self-assessment exercises and tutorials by email and MOOs. In addition to the course tutors, students have access to discussions with a wide range of people acting as course consultants both at Birkbeck College and at other institutions worldwide, who have particular expertise and interests. Students are organized into email discussion groups and informal and wide-ranging discussion is encouraged between students, tutors and consultants.

Course Requirements

We expect students to spend at least 6 hours a week on work related to the course, which will include working on course material, textbooks or other works in the scientific literature, discussions and tutorials and other tasks such as installing and testing software. Each student will need to provide himself or herself with access to suitable computing facilities (usually a PC or workstation), including graphical capability, and access to the Internet. Advice on this can be provided during the Registration period.

Course Structure

The course is based on learning and communication rather than on formal lectures, which allows us considerable flexibility in giving individual students either greater or lesser direction and guidance in different parts of the course according to his or her needs, interests and wishes. The course contains 3 units. The first two units involve the study of web material (see syllabus). During the interval between the first two units (in February) self assessment exercises are set. The Third unit is a dissertation/project which is mounted on the World Wide Web, work on this unit takes place in August and September.

Academic Requirements

The minimum academic qualification required to register for the course is normally the equivalent of a UK BSc (Bachelor's) degree in a subject allied to one of the following: Computer Science, Biology, Mathematics, Physics or Chemistry.

Assessment of the course

The course leads to the award of a University of London Advanced Certificate. Each student is assessed by a combination of the work assignments submitted in Terms 1 and 2, the Project submitted in Term 3 and an unseen final written examination in Term 3, held in an exemination center convenient for the student . An extra fee may be incurred for students sitting exams at external centres, this is a fee charged by the exam centre itself and as such may vary.

Students are welcome to study the course without taking the written examination. Students are eligible for a Certificate of Participation provided they either submit a satisfactory project or pass the written examination.

Back to PPS  On to Registration Details

(Last updated 4/1/00)