Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The course will cover basic toxicology and ecotoxicology, including how toxic substances are taken up in the organisms, distributed, biotransformed and excreted, how toxic substances react with biomolecules and downstream consequenses  for the organism, as well as knowledge about toxic substances, e.g. metals, organic contaminants and pesticides. The course aims to provide a holistic view of the topic by bridging human toxicology and ecotoxicology.

BIO4500 can be taken in the same semester as BIO4540 – Human Toxicology (discontinued) and BIO4550 – Ecotoxicology (discontinued).

First lecture is mandatory.  If you can not attend the first lecture, please send a note to, before the first lecture.

Learning outcome

After completing this course you should have the following skills:

  • Knowledge of sources, levels and mechanisms of action for toxic substances.
  • Understanding of exposure, uptake, metabolism, distribution and excretion of toxicants.
  • Knowledge of effects of toxic substances on molecular and cellular levels, on individual health and on natural populations and communities, including the use of biomarkers.
  • Knowledge of ecotoxicology, environmental pollution, oil effects, pharmaceutical toxicology, as well have an overview of different categories of toxic substances.
  • Upon completion of the course, the student should have an understanding of basic principles in ecotoxicology and toxicology, and of regulatory toxicology.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Recommended previous knowledge

Necessary knowledge in organic chemistry, cell biology and biochemistry, for example the courses MBV1010 – Cell biology and genetics (discontinued), MBV1030 – General biochemistry (discontinued), MBV2020 – Laboratory course (discontinued) and BIO2140 – Molecular biology and Biological Methods (discontinued) are recommended.

Overlapping courses

10 credits against BIO3500.


The teaching takes Place in week 34-39 with lectures and group exercises.

Attendance to the first lecture is mandatory


Approved participation in classes and one written digital final exam (100%). 

Digital examination

The written examination is conducted in the digital examination system Inspera. You will need to familiarize yourself with the digital examination arrangements in Inspera.

Read more about written examinations using Inspera.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

This course offers both postponed and resit of examination. Read more:


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.


The course is offered if the number of students are more than 3.

Facts about this course






Every autumn


Every autumn

Teaching language

Norwegian (English on request)