USQ LogoCourse specification
The current and official versions of the course specifications are available on the web at //
Please consult the web for updates that may occur during the year.

BIO2216 Histopathology 1

Semester 2, 2015 On-campus Toowoomba
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences
School or Department : School of Health and Wellbeing

Contents on this page


Examiner: Guang Bin Liu
Moderator: Mike Kotiw


Pre-requisite: BIO1103


An understanding of the normal and abnormal morphology of human organs, tissues and cells is vital to the diagnosis of a variety of human disease states. Familiarity with modern histological and cytological procedures is an essential adjunct to this. This course is designed to provide an introduction to more advanced studies in histopathology and cytology.


The course provides a detailed theoretical understanding of the microscopic structure and function of human organs, tissues and cells. The course is offered in 2 modules: in module 1 students will be given an overview of histology including modern protocols used for collection, preparation and examination of histological specimens. In module 2 the principles of modern cytology, including protocols for cytological examination, will be detailed. The course will also outline the role of pathology laboratories in the diagnosis of various disease states and in patient care and management. The course will also provide information about safe practices in an anatomy/histology laboratory.


On completion of this course students will be able to:

  1. Explain an understanding of normal and abnormal human cell, tissue and organ structure;
  2. Explain the basic protocols for fixing and staining organs and tissues for histological and cytological examination using light and electron microscopy;
  3. Describe how certain diseases can be diagnosed using histological and cytological methods;
  4. Describe protocols used for collecting, fixing and preparing cells for microscopic examination;
  5. Be aware of the safety practices required for working in a anatomy/histology laboratory;
  6. Investigate relevant literature and prepare technical reports on aspects of histopathology.


Description Weighting(%)
1. MODULE 1: Histopathology
The essentials of the pathological process.
2. The morphology of normal and abnormal human tissues. 16.00
3. The morphology of normal and abnormal human organs. 36.00
4. The principles, aims and common faults in histological analysis. 4.00
5. Preparation of histological specimens. 4.00
6. Case studies in diagnosis of diseases from histological specimens. 4.00
7. MODULE 2: Cytology
An introduction to cytological examination of human cells.
8. Morphology of normal and abnormal human cells. 8.00
9. The principles, aims and common faults in cytology practice. 4.00
10. Preparation of cytological specimens. 4.00
11. Diagnosis of disease using cytology methods. 4.00
12. Case studies in cytology: diagnosis of malignancy in cervical smears, respiratory and body fluid smears. 4.00
13. Specimen collection for cytological examination and safety in the laboratory. 4.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

  • Mescher, A 2013, Junqueira's Basic histology text & atlas, 13th edn, McGraw-Hill Medical, NY.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
  • Gartner, LP & Hiatt JL 2007, Colour Textbook of Histology, 3rd edn, Elsevier.
  • Kerr, JB 2010, Functional histology, 2nd edn, Mosby Elsevier, Chatswood, NSW.
  • Kumar, V, Abbas, A K, Aster, J C, Cotran, R & Robbins, S 2013, Basic pathology, 9th edn, Philadelphia, Elsevier/Saunders available online (ebrary), PA.
  • Kumar, V, Abbas, AK & Fausto, N 2009, Robbins and Cotran pathologic basis of disease, 8th edn, Elsevier Saunders, PA.
  • Young, B, Lowe, J, Stevens, A & Heath, J 2006, Wheater?s functional histology. A text and colour atlas, 5th edn, Churchill Livingstone, Edinburgh.

Student workload requirements

Activity Hours
Examinations 2.00
Online Lectures 26.00
Private Study 111.00
Tutorials 26.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
Assignments 40 40 21 Jul 2015 (see note 1)
2 HR Closed Exam 60 60 End S2 (see note 2)

  1. Examiner will advise due dates for assignments.
  2. Examination dates will be available during the Semester. Please refer to the examination timetable when published.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    It is the students' responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities (such as lectures, tutorials, laboratories and practical work) scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To complete the assignment satisfactorily, students must obtain at least 50% of the marks available for the assignment. To complete the examination and test satisfactorily, students must obtain at least 50% of the marks available for the examination and test. To complete the practical component satisfactorily, students must submit all the nominated practical reports and obtain at least 50% of the marks available.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the weighted aggregate of the marks (or grades) obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    In a Closed Examination, candidates are allowed to bring only writing and drawing instruments into the examination.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    Any Deferred or Supplementary examinations for this course will be held during the next examination period.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. The due date for an assignment is the date by which a student must despatch the assignment to the USQ. The onus is on the student to provide proof of the despatch date, if request by the Examiner. Students must retain a copy of each item submitted for assessment. This must be produced within five days if required by the Examiner.

  2. Harvard (AGPS) is the referencing system required in this course. Students should use Harvard (AGPS) style in their assignments to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The Harvard (AGPS) style to be used is defined by the USQ Library's referencing guide. //