Spring 2021 - MBB 762 G100

Human Genomics (3)

Class Number: 2582

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Jan 11 – Apr 16, 2021: Tue, Thu, 2:30–4:20 p.m.



The organization of the human genome and the role of genomic variation in health and disease. Genomics and personalized medicine; intellectual property and privacy issues.


This course will explore the organization of the human genome and the role of genome variation in health and disease.  A broad range of topics will be covered including, for example, human genetic history, immunogenomics, pharmacogenomics, neurogenomics, genomics technologies and genetic engineering. We will also cover the business of genomics, including direct-to-consumer genetic testing, intellectual property issues and the biotechnology industry.

In this course considerable emphasis will be placed on participation and critical thinking. Instruction will include lecture material and assigned reading/viewing of selected textbook chapters, review articles, the press, and various online resources. Students will undertake critical evaluation of selected seminal papers, and papers describing recent advances in topics relevant to human genomics. 


  • Non-cumulative open-book exams administered remotely 50%
  • An individual oral exam scheduled with the instructor and conducted remotely 15%
  • Assignments, including presenting a critical analysis of a research paper will make up approximately 35% of the grade. 35%


Lectures: synchronous (students are expected to attend scheduled lectures remotely)
Assessments: blended; both synchronous (mandatory attendance) and asynchronous assessments, a short, remote (by zoom), individual, oral exam

Exams will cover all course content including lecture material and assigned reading/viewing.
The final schedule of exams and assignments is subject to change depending on course enrollment.



  • Access to high-speed internet
  • computer with webcam for presentation to the class of group projects
  • Specialized software:  powerpoint


Terry A. Brown. Genomes 4, 4th Edition. 2017.

Dudley & Karczewski. Exploring Personal Genomics. 2013.

Graduate Studies Notes:

Important dates and deadlines for graduate students are found here: http://www.sfu.ca/dean-gradstudies/current/important_dates/guidelines.html. The deadline to drop a course with a 100% refund is the end of week 2. The deadline to drop with no notation on your transcript is the end of week 3.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in spring 2021 will be conducted primarily through remote methods. There will be in-person course components in a few exceptional cases where this is fundamental to the educational goals of the course. Such course components will be clearly identified at registration, as will course components that will be “live” (synchronous) vs. at your own pace (asynchronous). Enrollment acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes. To ensure you can access all course materials, we recommend you have access to a computer with a microphone and camera, and the internet. In some cases your instructor may use Zoom or other means requiring a camera and microphone to invigilate exams. If proctoring software will be used, this will be confirmed in the first week of class.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112).