autumn 2018
BIO-3614 Basic and applied microalgae I - 10 ECTS

Last changed 29.01.2019

Application deadline

Concerns only admission to singular courses: Applicants from Nordic countries: 1 June for the autumn semester. Exchange students and Fulbright students: 15 April for the autumn semester.

Type of course

Master course mainly aimed at biology and biotechnology students. The course is also available as a singular course.

Admission requirements

Local admission, application code 9336 - master's level singular course. Admission requires a bachelor's degree (180 ECTS) or equivalent qualification, with a major in biology, biotechnology or chemistry of minimum 80 ECTS.

Recommended prerequisites: One or several of following courses (or equivalent): BIO-1501 Akvatisk Økologi, BIO-2001 Fysiologi I, BIO-2513 Marin Biodiversitet, BIO-2601 Generell mikrobiologi, BIO-2606 Generell og marin bioteknologi, BIO-2010 Marine Ecology, BIO-3504 Production and Growth in Polar Areas

Course overlap

BIO-8606 Basic and applied microalgae II 5 stp

Course content

  • Part I. Basic microalgae taxonomy, physiology, and growth regulating stressors
  • Part II. Microalgae biochemistry and applied microalgae science (bioprospecting, mass cultivation, CO2 and NOx sequestration, products, biorefinery, process modelling)

Recommended prerequisites

BIO-1501 Aquatic Ecology, BIO-2001 Physiology I (Plant Physiology), BIO-2010 Marine Ecology, BIO-2513 Marin biodiversitet, BIO-2601 General microbiology, BIO-2606 General and marine biotechnology, BIO-3504 Production and Growth in Polar Areas

Objectives of the course


  • The course aims to give the students knowledge of «de facto» microalgae science relevant to the new emerging frontiers in bioenergy/biotechnology/CCU-applications.
  • This includes selected basic microalgae taxonomy, physiology and ecology themes, with special focus on northern temperate and Arctic biota.
  • Analysis/laboratory methods relevant to the themes listed above are also included, with special focus on biomass.


  • Be able to communicate a thorough understanding of microalgae as primary producers in an ecological as well as commercial biorefinery mass production context.
  • Be able to combine environmental and chemical/biological parameters in a quantitative way, i.e. to be able to perform simple mathematical dynamical modeling of ecological as well as biorefinery processes.

General competence:

  • Gain competence that allows for a necessary understanding of the quantitative aspects of ecology, stress, biochemistry and biorefinery processes.

Language of instruction

English if international students, otherwise Norwegian.

Teaching methods

The course is comprised of 10 lectures (2 hrs), 4 seminars (2 hrs) and 1 practical (36 hrs). The syllabus is made up of relevant scientific articles and fact sheets that will be given out after the lectures. In order to mediate an understanding of quantitative and dynamic aspects of microalgae ecology as well as production/cultivation applications, the students will participate in the construction of a (simple) «whole process» mathematical/dynamic simulation model. This quantitative model concept will function to interconnect all lectured science themes. Included in the course is a «biomass measuring methods» practical, either arranged as participation during a research cruise or at a microalgae production plant.


Oral exam. Grade: Pass/Fail.

Coursework requirements: In order to attend exam, students must fulfill three coursework requirements: 1. Attendance at 90% of the lectures/seminars 2. Submission of one written (practical) project 3. Submission of a report presenting results from selected model scenarios.

Re-sit: A re-sit exam is arranged in the next semester.


Recommended reading/syllabus

The syllabus includes selected scientific articles, handed out «fact sheets» and a written project. In addition to this come seminar participation and preparation.

Syllabus and reading list will be announced at first show up (course start).

  • About the course
  • Campus: Tromsø |
  • ECTS: 10
  • Course code: BIO-3614