University of Technology Sydney

42723 Healthomics and Molecular Diagnostics

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2024 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Engineering: Biomedical Engineering
Credit points: 6 cp

Subject level:


Result type: Grade and marks


This studio introduces students to the emerging areas in advance molecular diagnostics. This subject runs in a studio mode with an emphasis on collaboration and design thinking, concept development and refinement.

Students acquire advance knowledge and skills in diagnostics technologies with a focus on designing and building a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) machine. The PCR build is directed at specific stakeholders with outcomes relating to real-life problems which can enhance people's quality of life or meet industry requirements.

The subject further develops specialised verbal communication skills needed for the diagnostic or related biomedical industries. Overall the subject provides training for students in the area of molecular diagnostics with an emphasis on constructing a PCR machine and understanding the basis of the PCR reaction. The studio is research and problem based learning intensive with projects addressing key stakeholders in the medical or related industry.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

Upon successful completion of this subject students should be able to:

1. To understand the concepts of molecular diagnostics and apply these tools for detection of DNA genes to relevant industry needs
2. To acquire advance knowledge in the design and construction of diagnostic devices such as the PCR machine
3. To develop expert knowledge in the use of CAD design software
4. To develop collaborative skills by working in diverse teams to deliver working prototypes

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs)

This subject also contributes specifically to the development of the following Course Intended Learning Outcomes (CILOs):

  • Design Oriented: FEIT graduates apply problem solving, design thinking and decision-making methodologies in new contexts or to novel problems, to explore, test, analyse and synthesise complex ideas, theories or concepts. (C.1)
  • Technically Proficient: FEIT graduates apply theoretical, conceptual, software and physical tools and advanced discipline knowledge to research, evaluate and predict future performance of systems characterised by complexity. (D.1)
  • Collaborative and Communicative: FEIT graduates work as an effective member or leader of diverse teams, communicating effectively and operating autonomously within cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural contexts in the workplace. (E.1)

Contribution to the development of graduate attributes

Engineers Australia Stage 1 Competencies

Students enrolled in the Master of Professional Engineering should note that this subject contributes to the development of the following Engineers Australia Stage 1 competencies:

  • 1.3. In-depth understanding of specialist bodies of knowledge within the engineering discipline.
  • 2.1. Application of established engineering methods to complex engineering problem solving.
  • 2.3. Application of systematic engineering synthesis and design processes.
  • 3.6. Effective team membership and team leadership.

Teaching and learning strategies

Studio introductory lectures

  • Online reading and demonstration videos for all 12 weeks
  • Lab notes

Studio Workshop every week

  • Group base work with hands on practical engagement with relevant industry equipment and tools
  • Project management and team dynamics to stimulate working conditions
  • Active mentorship by research academic to ensure relevance and assisting in setting achievable milstones

Content (topics)

Topic 1: Introduction to cell biology, genes and diseases

This is a series of learning objective which will cover fundamental cell biology followed by an advance understanding of genes and their role in development and human diseases. The topic will further deliver an expert understanding of DNA and RNA structures.

Topic 2: Molecular Diagnostics and Biomarkers

Introduction to the PCR Machine
Students will be given an introductory seminar in the area of molecular diagnostics. We will focus on the industry and the idea of a PCR machine.

Topic 3: Understanding design principals and how to ideate solutions

This topic will embrace design learning methodologies and show students how to ideate solutions using a stepwise approach.

Topic 4 and 5: Arduino and SolidWorks workshops

1. Understanding of the Arduino and C programming

2. PID controller basics

3. SolidWorks Basic Training

Students will be given an understanding of the Arduino and PID controllers in the context of the PCR machine. We will also begin introductory training in Solidworks for CAD designs.

Topic 6: Advanced CAD design, Laser Cutting and 3D printing workshop

1. Assembly and Virtual Component Integration using CAD softwar

2. 3D printing and Laser Cutter training

3. Endnote referencing training

Students will continue their training in SolidWorks using advance design function and features. We will explore Kerfs and how to utilise these design features in laser cutting. Students will also have the chance to 3D print their design for their PCR build. They will also be trained to use the Endnote referencing program to generate bibliographies and a reference index.