BIOS3920 – Research Literature in Cancer Biology

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Changes in the course due to coronavirus

Autumn 2020 the exams of most courses at the MN Faculty will be conducted as digital home exams or oral exams, using the normal grading scale. The semester page for your course will be updated with any changes in the form of examination.

See general guidelines for examination at the MN Faculty autumn 2020.

Course content

This course will provide a thorough introduction to the molecular and cellular events involved in tumor formation, progression, and metastasis. This knowledge, obtained through basic research using biochemical, molecular, and genetic analysis, is the basis for the development of innovative therapy for cancer patients the link to which will also be described. A special focus of the class will be critical analysis and presentation of the primary scientific literature in cancer research to foster understanding of the strengths and limitations of various approaches that are applicable to all areas of biological research.

Learning outcome

  • Understand the main principles that are involved in cancer development
  • Grasp some of the key biochemical, molecular, cell biological, and genetic events that underlie these principles
  • Understand how this information can be translated to applications in the clinic
  • Gain skills to critically read and discuss the primary scientific literature and make formal presentations on these

Admission to the course

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.

Priority will be given to students in the bachelor program in Biosciences.

Special admission requirements

In addition to fulfilling the Higher Education Entrance Qualification, applicants have to meet the following special admission requirements:

  • Mathematics R1 (or Mathematics S1 and S2) + R2

And in addition one of these:

  • Physics (1+2)
  • Chemistry (1+2)
  • Biology (1+2)
  • Information technology (1+2)
  • Geosciences (1+2)
  • Technology and theories of research (1+2)

The special admission requirements may also be covered by equivalent studies from Norwegian upper secondary school or by other equivalent studies (in Norwegian).

BIOS3600 – Genetics and Developmental Biology or equivalent knowledge is highly recommended. BIOS2900 – Molecular Biology BIOS1130 – Biokjemi I BIOS1110 – Celle- og molekylærbiologi 

If you do not have the recommended prerequisites, contact the course teacher. 

Overlapping courses


The teaching is given as

  • lectures

  • seminars by experts in the field (75% obligatory)

  • colloquia (obligatory)

  • student presentations (obligatory)

Attendance is mandatory for the first lecture, also for those on the waiting list. If you are unable to attend the first lecture, you will lose your seat on the course if you have not informed the student administration prior to the first lecture.  


  • Class participation: 10%
  • Assignment 1: 5%
  • Assignment 2: 10%
  • Paper presentation: 25%
  • Final written exam: 50%

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

This course is seen in conjuntion with the course MBV3090 - Research Literature in Cancer Biology in practice of the three way rule

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

You may write your examination paper in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

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.

Resit an examination

Students who can document a valid reason for absence from the regular examination are offered a postponed exam at the beginning of the next semester.

New examinations are offered at the beginning of the next semester for students who do not successfully complete the exam during the previous semester.

We do not offer a re-scheduled exam for students who withdraw during the exam.

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) Oct. 22, 2020 6:13:26 AM

Facts about this course

Teaching language