Experimental Molecular Biology II

Undergraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content

This course builds on MOL221, Experimental molecular biology I.

In MOL222 students will follow laboratory protocols to perform molecular cloning of two protein-coding genes followed by their mammalian cell expression and analysis using immuno-detection and microscopy techniques. The results obtained are reported in a scientific publication (IMRaD). In MOL222, the students will get theoretical and practical introduction to important methods and techniques in biochemistry and molecular biology. These include molecular cloning, PCR, plasmid propagation in bacteria, plasmid purification, restriction analysis, overexpression of genes in mammalian cell lines, microscopy, as well as gel electrophoresis. Furthermore, students will get hands on experience in the usage of bioinformatics tools for molecular cloning and will learn the physical and chemical basis of the related analytical methods. Along with the practical aspects of the course, particular emphasis will be made on the development of scientific communication skills including proper documentation of the experimental procedures,experimental results, background information and critical evaluation of the obtained results including their quantitative analysis. Laboratory safety aspects will also be a focus. The purpose of the course is to provide solid basic knowledge and skills in experimental molecular biology techniques and in scientific communication thus establishing the basis for further studies in molecular biology. knowledge is evaluated based on portfolio assessment (IMRaD report, 60 % grade) and school exam assessment (practical problems in molecular biology, 40% grade).

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the course the student should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:


The student

  • can explain the principles of molecular cloning, PCR and cell transfection
  • knows basics of a molecular cloning project design
  • understands principles of immunofluorescence microscopy
  • knows the structure of a scientific report and the way experimental results are presented in a scientific communication
  • knows the general safety routines for laboratory work in molecular biology


The student

  • can prepare plasmids for transfection of cultured cells and analyse protein expression by means of fluorescence microscopy
  • can use instrumentation and gene technology methods for separation and analysis of proteins and nucleic acids
  • can interpret and evaluate steps and the results of a molecular cloning project
  • can interpret and report data both qualitatively and quantitatively
  • can follow general safety routines for laboratory work in molecular biology
  • can plan experimental work based on a protocol
  • can critically evaluate and discuss experimental results
  • can critically evaluate and correctly cite literature
  • can write scientifically

General competence

The student

  • can apply protocols for basic experimental work within the field of molecular biology and biochemistry
  • can properly communicate experimental procedures as well as critically evaluate and discuss obtained experimental results within the field of molecular biology and biochemistry

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Semester of Instruction


This course has a limited capacity, enrolment is based on application. The application deadline is Wednesday in week 2 for the spring semester. Please see this page for more information. You will receive confirmation of whether you received a seat in Studentweb no later than Monday the week after the deadline.

It is compulsory to attend the first lecture/orientation meeting, or you risk losing your seat. If you are unable to attend the first lecture, you must contact the Study Section (studie.bio@uib.no). The time of the first lecture/orientation meeting can be found in the schedule on the course website or on Mitt UiB.

Place of Instruction

Required Previous Knowledge

MOL100, KJEM110 and one of the following courses: MOL103(MOL203)/MOL200/ BIO103

MOL221 must be completed successfully or taken during the same semester as MOL222. Courses other than MOL221, with a similar scope, can be considered, if successfully completed and, if approved, can replace MOL221 as requirement.

Recommended Previous Knowledge
Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap
Access to the Course
In order to be admitted to the course, you must be admitted to a study programme at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences and you must fulfill the required previous knowledge. Students at the bachelor programme in molecular biology had first priority to the course.
Teaching and learning methods
Lectures and lab course
Compulsory Assignments and Attendance
All lab activities and computer exercise are mandatory. This also includes introductory (orientation) meeting. One sick leave is allowed if approved by the course administration. Completed activities are valid for 6 semesters (the current semester and five following semesters).
Forms of Assessment

Written lab report composed by the students in pairs (60% grade).

Individual school exam 3 hours (40% grade).

The compulsory activity must be approved, and the report and school exam must be completed to obtain a grade in the teaching semester. For å semester without teaching, the student may take the school exam if the compulsory activity is approved, and the lab report is completed. The result of ths exam will constitute 40 % and the laboratory report 60 % of the final grade.

Grading Scale
The grading scale used is A to F. Grade A is the highest passing grade in the grading scale, grade F is a fail.
Assessment Semester
Eksamen kvart semester.
Reading List
The reading list will be available within July 1st for the autumn semester and December 1st for the spring semester.
Course Evaluation
Students will evaluate the teaching in line with UiB and the department's quality assurance system.
Examination Support Material
Programme Committee
The Programme Committee is responsible for the content, structure and quality of the study programme and courses.