Students can find microbiology classes in dedicated microbiology programs, broader biology degree programs and more specialized fields of study like biomolecular science. Additionally, universities with schools of medicine offer microbiology courses for those pursing medical degrees, such as an M.D. Graduate microbiology courses usually offer more rigorous coursework than undergraduate courses with a greater focus on independent and original research.
Some of the most common concepts taught in microbiology classes include:
- Cell biology
- Function of the immune system
- Environmental role in infectious diseases
- The effect of pathogens and viruses on living organisms
List of Common Courses
Fundamentals of Microbiology Course
In this entry-level class, participants study prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms. Lectures and labs focus on microbial anatomy and physiology. The coursework lays the foundation for further microbiology courses, as well as specialized coverage of subjects like marine and medical microbiology.
Genetics of Microbiology Course
Focusing on the genetic structure of various microbes, lessons cover gene function and expression, cloning, and genetic engineering. This class also includes in-depth coursework on DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) replication, repair, mutation, and mapping. Students take labs that accompany their lectures either concurrently or separately.
General Virology Course
Virology is the study of the incubation, transmission and replication of viruses. Instruction includes a structural look at common viruses like the one that causes influenza, also known as the flu. Viruses that affect plants, animals and humans are all examined. Students study common viral pathologies, organisms' physiological response to exposure to viruses and typical antiviral treatment options.
Microbial Pathogens and Immunology Course
Students gain an understanding of the immune system and how it functions in response to specific microbial pathogens. They explore the development and use of vaccines and learn about immunoglobulin, t-cell receptors, immunological deficiencies, transplant conditions, allergic reactions and autoimmune conditions. This class typically includes lab work and is available toward the end of a degree program.
Infectious Diseases Course
Immunodeficiency, antibiotic abuse, human behavioral changes, breakdown of public health and land use issues are the focus of this upper-level course. It explores, asks and answers questions about emerging and re-emerging diseases. There is no lab component.