Molecular Cellular and Tissue Biomechanics (UG)

Module aims

This module introduces the application of engineering principles and approaches towards the study of biomechanical behaviour, bridging between the molecular, cellular, and tissue level scales

Learning outcomes

To understand the mathematical tools used in biomechanical analysis; To understand the concepts and techniques used in biomechanics research; To describe the basic structure of molecules, cells and tissues; To formulate biomechanical models of molecules, cells and tissues in terms of their structure; To critically analyse predictions of biomechanical models and weigh the advantages and disadvantages of different models; To evaluate the utility of biomechanical models to understand cell and tissue structure, function and physiology; Using Matlab to perform an mathematical analysis of experimental data; To deliver clear written communication in coursework solutions; To develop modelling skills; To develop an intuition for energy balances and scaling approximations that is useful across a wide range of engineering fields.


Module syllabus

Topics Covered are: Structure-function relationships for biological materials; lumped parameter modelling; energy approaches; mechanics of cells; mechanics of molecules; mechanics of tissues.


 Biomechanics (BE3-MBMX) Mechanics II - Solids (BE2-HSDM) Mechanics II - Fluids (BE2-HFLM) Ordinary and partial differential equations Vector calculus

Teaching methods

Students will be taught over one term using a combination of lectures and study groups. Lecture sessions will be made available on Panopto for review and supplemented with technologies to promote active engagement during the lecture such as 'learning catalytics'. Study groups will be based on taught content from lectures to reinforce these topics and allow students to test their understanding. 

Lectures: 20 hours
Study groups: 8 hours


Written exam: ; 80%% weighting
4 compulsory questions covering the entire range of course material
Outline answers to past papers will be available

●  Problem sheet: course work 1; 5% weighting
●  Problem sheet: course work 2; 5% weighting
●  Problem sheet: course work 3; 5% weighting
●  Problem sheet: course work 4; 5% weighting

Feedback : Feedback will be provided on courseworks within 2 weeks of submission.