Recent Question/Assignment

Part 1: PCR Critical Analysis (10%)
Individual Assessment
Length: 500 words maximum
Submission Details: Electronic submission through TURNITIN
Feedback Details Each student will receive a total mark that is broken down according to the marking rubric.
In addition, a written
general summary of the marking of the report, describing the performance of the cohort overall with general comments
according to the marking rubric.
Rationale In this written assignment, you will describe the application of the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) to
an area of
human, plant or animal science.
The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) has revolutionised molecular biology. The PCR method requires knowledge
of the properties of heat-stable DNA polymerases, how to design primers that are homologous to target sequences,
concepts such as hybridization and melting temperature, and the an appreciation of the many uses of PCR in human,
plant and animal science. A thorough understanding of the theory and practice of PCR is an essential part of the
study and application of molecular biology.
This assessment item will involve research into how PCR can be applied. You can choose an example from the fields
of human (e.g., medical science or forensics), plant (e.g., transgenic plants) or animal (e.g., ecology and conservation)
science and describe how PCR is applied in that context. You may describe the use of PCR in a research setting or
look for examples where PCR is being used in an applied setting; for example, PCR is a critical part of many genetic
tests, it is also part of DNA sequencing that is used to determine the DNA sequences of living and extinct organisms.
You will be assessed on the following:
- The description of the application of PCR: this requires you to describe why PCR is a such a valuable method.
For example, PCR is very good at amplifying very small amounts of DNA, making it valuable in the fields of
forensics and archaeology
- Appropriate use of figures to describe methodology
- Appropriate use of references and the use of the correct referencing format (Vancouver referencing style)
- Appropriate use of language & terms (spelling and grammar checked)
- Presented in a professional/academic manner that is easy to read and follow.
- You are not required to write a summary, introduction or conclusion, although your writing should be structured
(both language and format) with a logical flow of ideas.
- You must include tables/figures as appropriate; these are not included in the word count. When using figures
from research papers etc, you must provide your own figure legend (not copied from the figure) that highlights
the key points of the figure in the context of what you are describing in the body of the text.
- The reference list is not included in the word count.
- Peer-reviewed publications are the best source of information in the biological and medical science fields.
Although the internet contains a vast amount of information, much of it is incorrect, out of date, or biased to
a particular viewpoint.
- Peer-reviewed publications are those publications that prior to being accepted for publication have undergone
a rigorous peer review process to ascertain that the information contained within that publication is correct.
- The University Library Website contains links and resources to help you research your field of interest:
- Online databases such as PubMed ( contain a searchable database of
publications in the biological, biomedical, and health sciences.
References and Plagiarism
Referencing style to use is Vancouver. Please see library link (
default/files/pdf/cite_Vancouver.pdf) for further information.
Any information used from books, journals or the Internet MUST be referenced. Failure to reference a source is