Research Project in Biochemistry


This course spans the Fall and Winter terms, and provides real-world individual research opportunities in biochemistry, under the direct supervision of a Biochemistry Department faculty member. The course takes advantage of the resources and expertise of the over 50 faculty researchers within the department. It gives students an appreciation of the scientific method that comes from intensive experimentation. It enhances students’ understanding of theoretical concepts learned in other courses through a better understanding of the experimental approaches upon which those theories are based, and provides one on one contact with faculty members. Lab work is complemented by a series of mandatory tutorials focused on practical and technical aspects of laboratory research. The experience gained in this intermediate research project will enhance the student experience in our advanced level research project course, BCH473.

To enroll

Students may approach any of the academic staff in the Department of Biochemistry about the possibility of doing a research project under his or her supervision. BCH Specialists should contact Dr Brown directly for placement assistance. Faculty who have expressed an interest in supervising a BCH374 student will be listed under ‘Instructors’, below, in late May. If accepted, the student must then request enrollment by sending an email with the name of the student, student number, current transcript (with Winter 2018 grades included), academic program, and name of the supervisor, to the course coordinator. The student is expected to spend at least one full day per week during the academic year on a research project in the supervisor’s laboratory.

Course Next Offered

September 2019

Course Time and Location

Tutorial: Tuesday, 3-4 pm, MSB5231. Attendance is a required element of the course.

Important dates, 2018-2019:
Sept 17: First tutorial (3:10 pm, MSB 5231)
Oct 7: Research project proposal due before 5 pm

January 6: Midterm reports due before 5 pm
January 7 and 14: Midterm presentations
March 2 - 6: Schedule final exam in consultation with Dr. Brown
April 3: Final report due before 5 pm
April 6 - 25: Oral exams


BCH242Y (75% or higher) + BIO230H + CHM247H/CHM249H + approval of the course coordinator, for Specialists

BCH210H (80% or higher) + BIO230H + CHM247H/CHM249H + cGPA of 3.3 + approval of the course coordinator, for Majors

Enrollment Limit


Method of Student Evaluation

There are four components to the final grade for BCH374:

Thirty percent of the final grade is contributed by the student's research project supervisor, based on the student's performance in the lab. The supervisor will evaluate the student's progress at the end of the Fall term (15%) and at the end of the Winter term (15%).

Thirty percent of the final grade is contributed by the course coordinator. This portion includes a 3 page research project proposal (5%), a 5 page midterm report (15%), and a midterm progress presentation (10%).

Thirty percent of the final grade is contributed by the student's exam committee, who will evaluate the final research report and the oral exam. The report, the presentation, and the student's handling of questions during the oral examination will be weighted equally (10% each).

Ten percent of the final grade is contributed by a peer evaluation of the student’s research technique presentation.

5% Proposal
10% Technique presentation
10% Midterm talk
15% Midterm report
15% Midterm supervisor eval
15% Final supervisor eval
30% Final exam (Report; Presentation; Questions)

Additional Notes and Resources

BCH374 2019 Syllabus
Organization Scheme for the Final Report


Grant W. Brown

Grant W. Brown

Donnelly Centre, Room 1206
160 College Street


Aleixo Muise

Aleixo Muise

416-813-7735 or 416-813-5216

Last Updated 8 July 2019