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Unit information: Cell Signalling in 2021/22

Unit name Cell Signalling
Unit code CSSBM1015
Credit points 10
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Academic Year (weeks 1 - 52)
Unit director Professor. McArdle
Open unit status Not open




School/department Bristol Medical School
Faculty Faculty of Health Sciences

Description including Unit Aims

This unit covers the mechanisms by which cells communicate with one-another at the molecular and biochemical level. It will cover three main areas (with approximately equal emphasis/time on each). The first will provide a broad coverage of the principles and types of molecules involved in cell-cell communication (this will also encompass revision of some more fundamental aspects of cell biology). The second will provide a more detailed coverage of signalling pathways and networks that influence cell fate (division, death and differentiation). The third will provide a more detailed coverage of signalling within specific systems (e.g. neuronal, immune and cardiovascular systems). Relevance to health and disease will be incorporated in each section.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Students successfully completing this module will:

  • have a broad understanding of biochemical and molecular mechanisms underlying cell-cell communication.
  • have a more detailed understanding of the signalling pathways, networks and molecules controlling cell differentiation, proliferation and survival.
  • have a more detailed understanding of the signalling pathways controlling activity within specific physiological systems (e.g. neuronal, immune and cardiovascular)

Teaching Information

  • Web-based Audio Lectures and Seminars.
  • Web-based tutorials/practicals
  • Self-directed study
  • On-line discussion forums

Assessment Information

Summative Assessment:

  • Coursework (contributing a total of 100% to the module).
  • 4 sets of multiple choice questions (MCQ) of a simple format (e.g. select an answer from a short number of options, true/false) each contributing 15% to module giving a total of 60%.
  • 2x short answer question sets or extended MCQs each contributing 20% to module giving a total of 40%

Please note that students will be given formative feedback on all coursework assessment where appropriate


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. CSSBM1015).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.