Biology of Ageing - BIOS6440

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Spring Term 6 15 (7.5) Jennifer Tullet checkmark-circle


The module provides a detailed molecular basis for the ageing process. It reviews the organisms and experimental methods used to study ageing, and discusses the findings of this work to provide both knowledge and context to the process of ageing.

Topics may include: Importance and principles of ageing research
Why do organisms age and theories of ageing
Overview of processes and pathways controlling ageing

How ageing and lifespan is measured.

Signalling pathways that control ageing

Diseases of ageing

Ethics of ageing research
There will be two workshops: Workshop 1: Data analysis session (whole class or 2-3 groups).
Workshop 2: Group discussion of key ageing research paper(s) (small groups ).


Contact hours

Total Contact Hours: 26
Independent Study Hours: 124
Total Study Hours: 150


It is required that you have taken all the core modules within stage 1 and 2 of one of our Bioscience programmes in order to take this module.

Method of assessment

Assignment 1: Data analysis and interpretation, 40%, Maximum 1500 words.
Examination, 2 hr, 60%

Indicative reading

Suggested reading will consist of review articles and primary research publications. The emphasis of this course will be to read and interpret the scientific literature first hand.
Some extracts or reading will also be recommended from "Biology of Aging" first edition CRC press by Roger B McDonald.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
Demonstrate knowledge of the major processes underlying the ageing process.
Demonstrate practical and data handling skills associated with analysing lifespan and age-related decline data sets.

The intended generic learning outcomes. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
Interpret and retrieve information
Analyse and evaluate data
Demonstrate written communication skills


  1. Credit level 6. Higher level module usually taken in Stage 3 of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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