D3a - Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari e Ambientali - Guida degli insegnamenti (Syllabus)


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Seat Agraria
A.A. A.A. 2016-2017
Credits 6
Hours 54
Period 1^ semestre
Language ENG
U-gov code STA 3A024


Basic knowledge of mathematics, physics, chemistry, biochemistry and genetics are propaedeutic to the comprehension of the topics treated in the present course.


Development of the course

The course consists of: a) theoretical lectures (4 ECTS), b) other theoretical-practical activities carried out in groups (in class and/or at the laboratory), and possible guided visits (2 ECTS). An e-learning course is available in parallel with the lectures and practical activities carried out in presence. It includes: a) the educational material organized in learning units; b) guidelines and reports concerning the laboratory activities; c) self-evaluation tests; d) interactive forum and other tools.




Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding:

(i) proper theoretical knowledge concerning the structure and functioning of microbial cells, and microbial ecology and biodiversity; ii) theoretical and practical knowledge on microbiological techniques.


Applying knowledge and understanding:

(i) ability to apply the knowledge acquired as a basis for understanding of microbiological aspects  involved within agricultural productions; (ii) ability to perform laboratory activities concerning microorganisms.



 (i) independent judgment: ability to integrate the specific knowledge of the biology of microorganisms with those already acquired in other basic disciplines and to understand the value of this knowledge in the perspective of the entire curriculum; (ii) communication skills: ability to transfer in a clear and comprehensive way the information obtained using an appropriate scientific vocabulary.



History of Microbiology. Microbial world. The trees of life. Microbial diversity: Bacteria, Archaea, Eukarya (0.5 ECTS).

Structure and cellular functions in Bacteria and Archaea. Eukaryotes microorganisms: structure and cellular functions (general outline). Biology of yeasts and filamentous fungi (general outline). Microscopy (general outline) (1.5 ECTS).

Nutrition, culture, microbial growth and factors affecting it. Methods measurement of microbial growth. Metabolic diversity (nutritional groups). Metabolism of microorganisms: catabolism (glycolysis, respiration and electron carriers, proton motive force, citric acid cycle, anaerobic respiration, phototroph, chemiolitotrophy, autotrophy and nitrogen fixation, fermentations), essential elements of anabolism (2.5 ECTS).

Genetics and molecular biology of Bacteria: DNA synthesis, transcription and translation (general outline). Mutations, plasmids, horizontal gene transfer. Viruses (basic aspects) (0.5 ECTS).

Cycles of nutrients: the carbon cycle, the nitrogen cycle, sulfur cycle (0.5 ECTS).

Microbial symbiosis (0.5 ECTS).

Development of the examination

Learning evaluation methods

Oral discussion on three of the subjects listed in the teaching program. During the course, there are also going to be available self-evaluation tests (e-learning mode), in order to provide the students useful information about their skill level.


Learning evaluation criteria

To pass the oral exam, the student must demonstrate proper knowledge of the topics treated and listed in the program, capacity to make links and to discuss these topics, always using a proper scientific-technical language.


Learning measurement criteria

The final mark is attributed in thirtieths. Successful completion of the examination will lead to grades ranging from 18 to 30 “cum laude”.


Final mark allocation criteria

The oral examination consists of three questions concerning the subjects listed in the teaching program, each of ones will be quantified in the range 0 - 10. The degree of 30 “cum laude” is attributed when the student demonstrates complete mastery of the subject.


Recommended reading


Brock Biology of Microorganisms (14th Edition) Volume 1 and 2. M.T. MadiganJ.M. MartinkoK.S. BenderD.H. BuckleyD.A. StahlT. Brock. Eds. Pearson. ISBN-13: 978-0321897398. ISBN-10: 0321897390.

Microbiology: A Laboratory Manual (10th Edition) J.G. Cappuccino, N. Sherman. ISBN-13: 000-0321840224. ISBN-10: 0321840224.

Other educational material is available on the e-learning web platform.


Tutorial sessions

Monday 3 pm to 5 pm.

  • C.L.T. - Scienze e Tecnologie Agrarie Curriculum TECNOLOGIE AGRARIE (STA - TA)
  • C.L.T. - Scienze e Tecnologie Agrarie Curriculum VITICOLTURA ED ENOLOGIA (STA - VE)

Università Politecnica delle Marche
P.zza Roma 22, 60121 Ancona
Tel (+39) 071.220.1, Fax (+39) 071.220.2324
P.I. 00382520427