Course Description

CSB201H is an online course intended to provide non-science students with an understanding of basic concepts in molecular biology and genetics, with particular emphasis on humans. The course will include an introduction to biotechnology, culminating in an opportunity to explore a multi-dimensional problem (e.g. cancer). Lectures will be delivered via the web and tutorials will require live (synchronous) webinar participation.

Our philosophy with CSB201H is to provide a supportive and comfortable space for students to learn about molecular biology, genetics and biotechnology and then to encourage students to apply what they’ve learned to relevant issues that are important to society as a whole.

CSB201H is offered in a fully online format with both synchronous and asynchronous components. Recorded lectures will be available via Quercus for students to watch prior to tutorial. Tutorials (online attendance required) will be live (synchronous) and conducted using Zoom so that students will ask questions directly to the instructors or TA. Zoom also allows the instructor to show additional materials and examples, work through problems, or answer student questions. The Zoom breakout room function will also be used for students each week to work in smaller groups on problem sets. Students will be expected to use their microphones in these breakout rooms.

You will be able to view most of the course materials using standard tablets/computers and an internet connection (including wireless). However, for the required synchronous webinar tutorials you will need:

  • a good internet connection
  • a headset or earbuds with functioning microphone
  • a laptop or desktop computer—tablets and smart phones do not always work well with software tools we will be using in webinars
  • a place where you feel comfortable speaking during your tutorial—We will have the chat tool operational during webinars, but participation in oral discussions is also required




Prof. M. Neumann
Prof. K. Yip

Contact Hours

Video Lecture Recordings, 12T

Evaluation (Subject to change)

Final Exam (normally held in person during December exam period): 40%
Online Lecture Quizzes (individual work): 15%
Problem Sets (group work): 20%
Tutorial Participation (individual work): 15%
Final Group Project (group work): 10%

Additional Information

This course counts as a Science Distribution Requirement for students in all years and disciplines; particularly suitable for Humanities and Social Science students. This course does not count towards CSB programs.

During the first week of tutorials, we will practice with the technology and assignments so that everyone feels comfortable (i.e. All work will be for practice during the first week, so anyone having technological issues will not lose marks. Content in the first week is still testable eventually). Please feel free to e-mail Dr. Melody Neumann with any questions prior to the commencement of classes (

Please note that the first week of webinar tutorials start Thursday Sept. 8th or Friday Sept. 9th depending on the tutorial you sign up for on ACORN.

Last updated on June 7th, 2022