skip to content


Department of Biochemistry


The structure of the BMB course

BMB is taught by means of lectures, laboratory-based exercises with linked discussions, Journal Clubs and Experimental Design sessions organised by the Biochemistry Department and also supervisions organised by your college.

Progress in science is achieved through observation and experiment. Biochemistry (and its close cousin, molecular biology) is an experimental science that advances from well-thought out investigations in the laboratory. No serious student should neglect the opportunities which this course provides to appreciate this fact. Your course includes experiments for you to gain some insight into how laboratory investigations are carried out and how data are processed and interpreted. To obtain useful results an experiment should be designed to answer a definite question and the detailed planning should be sufficiently rigorous to exclude adventitious errors. The course gives you the opportunity to plan some experiments for yourselves. You should benefit from the practicals in three ways:

  • You will learn a variety of experimental techniques, all of which are currently used in biochemical research. The practicals have been designed to complement the lectures and fit in with their sequence as far as possible. The hands-on experience should link to the mental framework provided by the lectures, and give you a deeper understanding and more realistic perspective of the topics discussed.
  • You will learn to handle experimental data effectively, and to extract the maximum information content without falling into the trap of over-interpretation.
  • You will be helped when it comes to the data handling questions in the Tripos examination. Question papers from the last three years are included on Moodle.
  • The course handbook will be available on the course Moodle site.

More information about the BMB course content can be found on the 'Course Overview' tab.

The BMB Moodle Site

The BMB Moodle site contains key teaching materials, such as lecture handouts, links to lecture recordings, and practical notes. The course handbook can also be downloaded from the Moodle site.

The BMB course is supported by a comprehensive Moodle site that contains a range of materials that aim to support a variety of learning styles. These materials include short videos describing various experimental techniques, quizzes based on past exam questions or techniques, techniques posters, interactive practical resources, lecture recordings etc. Other key materials, such as safety information, past exam papers, and more, are also available on Moodle. 

Students enrolled on the BMB course at the start of Michaelmas Term are automatically subscribed to the BMB Moodle site. Students joining the BMB course after the start of term may be added to the Moodle site by contacting the Teaching Administrator.