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Unit of study_

CPAT3902: Pathogenesis of Human Disease 2 (Advanced)

Semester 2, 2020 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

Understanding the underlying mechanisms of disease and disease progression, improving human health and addressing the impact of human activity on individual health outcomes are some of the great challenges facing modern medical sciences in the 21st century. To equip students with skills appropriate for careers in the biomedical sciences and for further training in research or professional degrees it is necessary to provide an integrated understanding of how to evaluate and analyse crucial pathological mechanisms governing disease progression in humans. You will participate in inquiry-led museum and practical class sessions that review human pathological specimens using innovative online tools combined with high-resolution microscopy to crystallise and reinforce concepts developed in the unit. You will undertake investigations to gain an advanced understanding of the pathogenesis, natural history and related health complications of common human diseases. You will learn to use methodologies to exemplify key differences between normality and disease in order to explain cellular aspects of certain pathological processes. Through undertaking this unit you will develop the necessary practical skills required to employ advanced imaging technologies that are increasingly used to define and strategically assess how different organ systems react to injury/insult, which ultimately improve the capacity to manage and intervene in fundamental and clinical aspects of health and disease.

Unit details and rules

Unit code CPAT3902
Academic unit
Credit points 6
A mark of 70 or above in 12cp from {[ANAT2008 or ANAT2009 or (ANAT2010 or ANAT2910) or ANAT2011] or [BCHM2071 or BCHM2971) or BCHM2072 or BCHM2972) or BCHM2081 or BCHM2981) or BCHM2082 or BCHM2982)] or [(BCMB2001 or BCMB2901) or BCMB2002 or BCMB2902)] or [(BIOL2021 or BIOL2921) or (BIOL2022 or BIOL2922) or (BIOL2024 or BIOL2924) or (BIOL2030 or BIOL2930) or (BIOL2031 or BIOL2931)] or [(GEGE2001 or GEGE2901)] or [(IMMU2101 or MICR2021 or MICR2921 or MICR2022 or MICR2922 or MICR2031 or MICR2931 or MIMI2002 or MIMI2902)] or [(MBLG2071 or MBLG2971) or (MBLG2072 or MBLG2972)] or [(PCOL2011 or PCOL2021) or (PCOL2012 or PCOL2022)] or [(PHSI2005 or PHSI2905) or (PHSI2006 or PHSI2906) or (PHSI2007 or PHSI2907) or [PHSI2008 or PHSI2908)] or [(BMED2403 and BMED2404)]} or [MEDS2004 and 6cp from (MEDS2001 or MEDS2002 or MEDS2003 or MEDS2005)]
Assumed knowledge

A working knowledge of biology

Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Melanie White,
Lecturer(s) Paul Witting,
Stuart Cordwell,
Bob Bao,
Greg Sutherland,
Gulfam Ahmad,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Final exam (Open book) Type C final exam Final exam
Short answer and MCQ - Covering all modules delivered
60% Formal exam period 2 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Small test Exam 1
MCQ - Renal and Intestinal Content
10% Week 07 30 mins
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO8 LO6 LO2
Assignment Lab archives wet lab
Assessment of lab book and lab stay
15% Week 09 n/a
Outcomes assessed: LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Small test Exam 2
MCQ - Reproductive and Cardiovascular
10% Week 11 30 mins
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO8 LO6 LO2
Assignment Video project
Video presentation
5% Week 11 n/a
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO8 LO7 LO4 LO3
Type C final exam = Type C final exam ?

Assessment summary

  • In-semester exam: The content examined will include all relevant material for the course up until (and including) the week prior to the exam.
  • Final exam: Exam comprises of short answer questions and multiple true/false questions.

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at an exceptional standard.


75 - 84

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at a very high standard.


65 - 74

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at a good standard.


50 - 64

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at an acceptable standard.


0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Multiple weeks Advanced museum tutorial Tutorial (3 hr) LO3 LO4 LO6 LO7 LO8
Advanced approaches to the study of pathology Tutorial (4 hr) LO5 LO6 LO7
Laboratory project Science laboratory (9 hr) LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 01 Renal Pathology 1 Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5
Renal Pathology 1 Practical (1.5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 02 Renal Pathology 2 Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 03 Renal Pathology 3 Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5
Renal Pathology 3 Practical (1.5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 04 Intestinal Pathology 1 Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5
Intestinal Pathology 1 Practical (1.5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 05 Intestinal Pathology 2 Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 06 Gynaecological Pathology 1 Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 07 Gynaecological Pathology 2 Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5
Gynaecological Pathology 2 Practical (1.5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 08 Cardiovascular Pathology 1 Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 09 Cardiovascular Pathology 2 Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5
Cardiovascular Pathology 2 Practical (1.5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 10 Cardiovascular Pathology 3 Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 11 Neurological Pathology 1 Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5
Neurological Pathology 1 Practical (1.5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8
Week 12 Neurological Pathology 2 Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8

Attendance and class requirements

Students are required to attend a minimum of 80% of compulsory museum tutorials and microscope practicals for this unit, as per the University Coursework Policy

NOTE in view of COVID-19 impact: From August 24 (week 1), students enrolled in this unit should engage with and study all online content, as directed in the Canvas site, including the submission of any required formative tasks and completion of any asynchronous activities.

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Required readings

All readings for this unit can be accessed through the Library eReserve, available on Canvas.

  • Robbins Cotran Pathologic Basis of Disease; 10th edition; Vinay Kumar, Abul K. Abbas, Jon. C. Aster

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. Demonstrate an understanding of how different organ systems react to injury and adapt to pathology
  • LO2. Identify how the basic concepts of disease processes apply to systemic pathologies that are associated with common diseases
  • LO3. Demonstrate and exemplify differences between normality and disease
  • LO4. Evaluate diseased tissue at the macroscopic and microscopic level
  • LO5. Demonstrate an understanding of basic investigative techniques for disease detection in pathology
  • LO6. Transfer problem-solving skills to novel situations related to disease pathogenesis
  • LO7. Find, describe, synthesise and present information on disease pathogenesis
  • LO8. Communicate scientific information appropriately, both orally and through written work

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

After consulting with the students, academics will be present for advance museum tutorials


The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.