The BSc in Cell and Molecular Biology (CAMB) program contributes to Khalifa University’s desire to become a center of excellence in science, engineering, and medicine within the region and beyond.  This is aligned with the UAE’s strategic plans, which aim to shift the reliance on the oil-based economy to a knowledge based one by focusing on science, engineering, and health sciences.

The program aims to offer comprehensive theoretical and practical knowledge of Cell and Molecular Biology to students interested in pursuing careers in life sciences or medicine. It will graduate students who are critical thinkers with the ability to use their scientific knowledge to solve problems in life sciences and to effectively communicate them various stakeholders.


Program Educational Objectives
Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of major concepts, theoretical principles and experimental findings in cell and molecular biology and related topics.
  2. Conduct laboratory experiments and analyze results.
  3. Retrieve and use life science information from scientific literature.
  4. Solve practical and theoretical problems in life sciences and demonstrate critical thinking skills.
  5. Communicate effectively both orally and in writing.
  6. Work effectively independently and in teams.
  7. Conform to safety, ethical and professional standards adopted in life sciences.
Course Descriptions

The course credit hours are designated as (lecture hours/week – lab hours/week – total credit hours). For example (3-3-4) would mean 3 hours/week lectures, 3 hours/week lab, with a total course credit of 4 CH.


BIOL 101

Fundamentals of Biology (2-2-3)

Prerequisite: None

This course introduces the structure and function of both animals and plants.  It will introduce the principles of taxonomical classification of biological organisms.  It will focus on the morphology and anatomy of biological organisms, as well as their physiological processes, life cycle and behavior. Students will develop an understanding of the relationships that exist between animals, plants and microorganisms.

BIOL 111

General Biology I (3-0-3)

Prerequisite: None

This course covers the biological principles that apply to life, with emphasis on the biology of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. Topics include cell structure, energy and metabolism, genetics and molecular biology, including mitosis, meiosis, regulation of gene expression and genomics. This course serves as a foundation for more advanced and complex concepts that students will learn in their advanced biology courses.

BIOL 112

General Biology II (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: BIOL 111

This course covers broad topics including evolution and taxonomy of life, focusing on protists, fungi, plants, and animals. It intends to provide fundamental information about evolutionary relationships between different species using taxonomy and phylogenetic trees. Major plant and animal anatomical structures and their physiological functions will be discussed. Finally, an overview of ecology and populations interaction with ecosystems is provided.


BIOL 211

General Genetics (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: BIOL 111

This course aims to develop a clear understanding of key aspects of genetics through integrating classical Mendelian genetics with molecular genetics. This course will include the basics of inheritance and transmission, genetic mutation, and genetic material function. Epigenetic modes of inheritance of transposable elements and chromatin states will be discussed as well. 


BIOL 221

Applied Microbiology (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: BIOL 112

The course covers the basic biology, structure, function, ecology and evolution of bacteria and viruses. The course covers principles related to microbial growth, metabolism, genetics and the scientific methods used in microbiology, and key discoveries such as pasteurization, vaccination and antibiotic treatment. The course introduces emerging microbiological issues, such as drug resistance and how the gut microbiome impacts human health.


BIOL 301

Cell Biology (3-0-3)

Prerequisites: BIOL 112

This course focuses on the biology of the cell in terms of structure and function and the functional interaction of the cell with its microenvironment. Topics include the extracellular matrix, cell migration, intracellular compartmentalization, protein modifications and transport and signal transduction pathways. The course also covers different cell death processes specifically apoptosis and autophagy. Stem cells technology and its ethical issues are also covered in this course.


BIOL 312

Biochemistry II (3-0-3)

Prerequisite: CHEM 311

In this course, students apply their basic knowledge of Biochemistry to specific metabolic reactions and certain physiologically important biomolecules.  The course covers regulation of carbohydrates (including gluconeogenesis) and fatty acids (including fatty acid catabolism, and ketone bodies). The course also deals with photosynthesis, metabolism of nitrogen, and biochemical cellular signaling.


BIOL 331

Physiology (2-3-3)

Prerequisite: BIOL 112

This course provides the basic physiological principles and the functional organization of living systems. Basic cell biology is reviewed and related to the physiology of the body.  Students also learn about organ systems (including the endocrine, nervous, muscular, cardiovascular, urinary, respiratory and digestive systems) in terms of their physiology and how these systems integrate and work together to help maintain homeostasis.


BIOL 335

Developmental Biology (2-3-3)

Prerequisite: BIOL 301, BMED 341

The course provides an overview of the molecular and cellular mechanisms that control the development of organisms.  The emphasis of the course is on connecting specific genetic pathways to developmental traits, and identifying the genes and proteins involved in cell-cell signaling, cell differentiation, morphogenesis and growth. The focuses on animal development using invertebrate and vertebrate model systems, and will cover the use of stem cells in medical treatment.


BIOL 399

Internship (0-0-1)

Prerequisite: A minimum of 70 credits earned by the end of the preceding semester, including at least 24 credits in core major courses.

The internship provides students with practical, on-the-job experience which allows them to integrate theory with “real world” situations. It is academically supervised by a faculty member and professionally supervised by the company’s designated internship supervisor who provides feedback to the university about the student’s progress. The duration of the internship is a minimum of 8 consecutive weeks, and is graded on a Pass/Fail basis.


BIOL 411

Immunology (3-0-3)

Prerequisite: BIOL 112 and BIOL 312

This course is an introductory course in mammalian immunology, with a focus on humans and human diseases.  It describes how the immune system protects the body from foreign agents. The molecular and cellular basis of innate and acquired immunity and how the two systems interact with specific foreign agents are covered.  Finally, applications of immunology, such as vaccine design, immune based therapeutics, and organ transplantation are also discussed.


BIOL 430

Bioinformatics (3-3-4)

Prerequisites:    BMED 342 or BIOL 312

This course introduces future life-scientists to bioinformatics, its tools and analysis methods. Fundamental and current topics in bioinformatics, genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, transcriptomics, as well as epigenomics will be presented. Students are also exposed to the R software and other basic bioinformatic tools. Finally, the course also introduces students to current issues of bioethics, especially with regards to -omics data and individual privacy. Students who have already BMED 430 cannot take this course.


BIOL 497: Senior Research Project I (0-0-3)

BIOL 498: Senior Research Project II (0-0-3)

Prerequisite: Senior Standing, or departmental approval

Over the course of two semesters, students work closely in small teams with a faculty member to address a significant and complex question at the boundary of knowledge in Cell and Molecular Biology. The team combines and applies a broad range of theoretical and practical research techniques to the question and exercises advanced critical thinking and evaluation. The team is guided through the whole research process – from hypothesis generation to data acquisition, analysis and conclusion – and is encouraged to produce professional-standard reports and presentations. 

MATH 252

Introduction to Applied Statistics (3-0-3)

Prerequisite: MATH 112

This course introduces students to basic probability and statistical methods. It covers descriptive statistics, random variables, and basic discrete and continuous distributions. Emphasis is placed on point and interval estimation, tests of hypotheses, and regression. Applications to biosciences and engineering are given throughout the course.



BMED 341

Molecular Cell Biology (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: BMED 212

Co-requisite: CHEM 221 or CHEM 211

This course provides students with fundamental understanding of current topics and techniques in molecular biology, while developing skills in critical thinking and written expression/communication. The goal of this course is to develop a comprehensive understanding of the basic fundamental concepts of molecular biology. This will be achieved both from the perspective of established molecular mechanisms for regulating the fundamental processes of a cell, as well as from a technical laboratory-based applied perspective for using molecular biology as an experimental tool. The course should also fulfill the partial coverage of biology category in MCAT examination for MD program application.


BMED 342

Molecular Genetics, Technologies and Tools (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: BMED 341

The primary objective of this course is to introduce students to the fundamental concepts of genetics (from the work of Mendel to the current use of molecular techniques), and to emphasize the understanding of genes in the context of cells, tissues and systems.  Topics covered throughout the course will include the fundamentals of genetics, epidemiology in the context of population genetics, genome technologies, genome sequencing and analysis tools, the roles of genetics in the etiology, pathophysiology, treatment of disease, as well as interpretation of and application of research data.



CHEM 115

General Chemistry I (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: None

This course presents a comprehensive study of the facts, concepts and laws of chemistry. It includes the study of the fundamental principles and laws of chemistry including stoichiometric relationships, aqueous chemistry, the ideal gas laws and kinetic molecular theory, thermochemistry, quantum theory and electronic structure, periodic properties, and chemical bonding and molecular structure. The course is accompanied by a laboratory component that emphasizes quantitative procedures. 


CHEM 116

General Chemistry I (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: CHEM 115

This is the second course in the General Chemistry series. Topical emphasis is placed on intermolecular forces, colligative properties of mixtures, chemical kinetics, acid-base equilibria, buffer systems, introductory acid-base titrations, solubility and complex equilibria, entropy and free energy. The importance of chemistry for both nuclear and environmental sciences is introduced.


CHEM 211

Organic Chemistry (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: MATH111, CHEM115

This course provides an introduction to naming, structure, bonding, reactivity, and properties of organic compounds such as alkanes, alkenes, alkynes, alkyl halides, aromatic compounds, alcohols, amines, and carbonyl compounds in the views of atomic and molecular orbital theories. These basic principles are applied to a variety of topics ranging from chemical reactions to biomolecules.


CHEM 241

Introduction to Analytical Chemistry (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: CHEM 116

This course introduces the principles and practices of analytical chemistry. It presents fundamental concepts on statistical data treatment and analysis, calibration methods for instrumental analysis, as well as sampling and sample preparation. The notions of qualitative and quantitative analyses are introduced through inorganic, organic, and bioanalytical chemistry examples, and focus on volumetric titration methods and selected electroanalytical and chromatographic separation techniques. The lectures and labs provide an integrative learning opportunity for students to apply their knowledge of aqueous acid-base, complexometric, and redox reactions to solve analytical chemistry problems involving coupled equilibria and the analysis of mixtures.




CHEM 311

Biochemistry I (3-3-4)

Prerequisite: CHEM 211

The overall goal of this course is for the student to gain a basic working knowledge of biochemical concepts and techniques which will be necessary for future scientific endeavors. Emphasis will be placed on providing a coherent description of the major biochemical concepts and techniques alongside a theoretical and chemistry-based understanding of factors affecting the structure and function of important classes of biomolecules and biomacromolecules – from proteins, enzymes and DNA to lipids and carbohydrates. Theoretical concepts will be reinforced by laboratory activities, which will also seek to emphasize links between basic principles from organic, physical and analytical chemistry, and biochemical and biological phenomena.




Introduction to Psychology (3-0-3)

Pre-requisite: ENGL111

An introduction to selected concepts, methods, and vocabulary of psychology. Focus of study will be on the individual and the conditions that influence behavior. Topics that will be covered include growth and development, learning and thinking, emotions and motivations, personality and assessment, maladjustment and mental health, groups and social interaction, and social influence and society.



Introduction to Sociology (3-0-3)

Pre-requisite: ENGL112

An analysis of the social and cultural forces which govern human behaviour. The principal topics include social interaction and organization, socialization processes, primary groups including the family, collective behaviour, population and the relationship between social life and the environment.




HUMA 295

Introduction to Logical Reasoning (3-0-3)

Prerequisite: ENGL 112


This course provides students with a solid introduction to logical thinking and critical analysis. Emphasis will be placed on arguments as basic units of thinking. By understanding the importance of the validity and soundness of reasoning, students will be able to identify, analyze, and evaluate arguments in scientific language and everyday discourse.





Introduction to Applied Statistics

Prerequisite: MATH112

This course introduces students to basic probability and statistical methods. The course will cover descriptive statistics, random variables, basic discrete and continuous distributions, point and interval estimation, tests of hypotheses, regression and basic design of experiments. Applications to biosciences and engineering will be given throughout the course.