NASC 2008


Course Level


Offered Externally


Course ID


Unit Value


University-wide elective course


This class has not been
timetabled for year 2022.

Course owner

Course owner

Course aim

  • To provide a broad overview of the importance of bio and nanomaterials in modern materials science and society
  • To provide the foundations of the physicochemical principles of nano and biomaterials
  • For students to appreciate ethical issues related to the study and use of nano and bio materials
  • To expose students to professional practices in research, synthesis and communication, and
  • To expose students to alternative modes of the communication of science
  • To provide an appreciation of the principles of materials selection in design with a focus on the selection of appropriate nano and biomaterials.

Course content

Nanomaterials - The Nanoalphabet: Writing on the Nanoscale; The Nano-onion: Layer upon Layer of Material; The Nanoshape Game: Spheres, Rods, and Stars; Size matters: Optical Properties of Nanomaterials; Nano on the Inside: Zeolites and MOF; Soft Nanomatter: Polymer Nanomaterials; Intelligent (Nano)Design: Principles of Self-Assembly; Old Nano: Tiny Minerals; Nanolabs: Experiments on the Nanoscale

Biomaterials - The Long and the Short of it: Polymer Biomaterials; Not Just for Implants: Silicones in the Body; That’s Swell: Hydrogels and Water; Get Smart: Stimulus Responsive Biomaterials; Here Today, Gone Tomorrow: Biomaterials that Fade Away; Slip and Stick: Bioimplants; Old Bio: Metals and Ceramics; The Best of Both Worlds: Surface Modification; Repel or Attract: Controlling Biomolecule Adsorption.

Tutorials will focus on numerical problem solving related to the lectures, based on a single physical/chemical principle elucidated within each (using an ‘Equation of the Day’), designed to provide a clear connection between either a nano or bio phenomenon, and a materials property.

Workshops will focus on the use of social media as a means of science communication, debate, and engagement, with the following topics: Twitter Science; Blogging for Science Communication; Blogging for Science Critique; Websites for Science Content; Making the Connections; Making a Mark in Web2.0; then preparation of a blog.




Completion of first year of a Science or Engineering degree program.



Teaching method

Component Duration
Lecture 2 hours x 12 weeks
Tutorial 1 hour x 9 weeks
Workshop 1 hour x 9 weeks
Seminar (Seminars (presentation of online blogs)) 1 day x 1 week

Note: These components may or may not be scheduled in every study period. Please refer to the timetable for further details.


Task Length Weighting Duration
Tutorial work 1500 words 40% N/A
Workshops/Internet Blog Article 2000 words 40% N/A
Conference 1000 word equivalent 20% N/A


EFTSL*: 0.125
Commonwealth Supported program (Band 2)
To determine the fee for this course as part of a Commonwealth Supported program, go to:
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Fee-paying program for domestic and international students
International students and students undertaking this course as part of a postgraduate fee paying program must refer to the relevant program home page to determine the cost for undertaking this course.

Non-award enrolment
Non-award tuition fees are set by the university. To determine the cost of this course, go to:
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Not all courses are available on all of the above bases, and students must check to ensure that they are permitted to enrol in a particular course.

* Equivalent Full Time Study Load. Please note: all EFTSL values are published and calculated at ten decimal places. Values are displayed to three decimal places for ease of interpretation.

Course Coordinators

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