Module Details

Module Code: AGRI S7013
Full Title: Agricultural Biochemistry and Nutrition
Valid From:: Semester 1 - 2021/22 ( September 2021 )
Language of Instruction:English
Duration: 1 Semester
Credits:: 5
Module Owner::
  • Caroline Gilleran
  • Breda Brennan
  • Caroline Gilleran
Departments: Agriculture, Food and Animal Health
Module Description: This module will present the basic biochemistry underlying food science, molecular biology and animal physiology. It will also provide the students with a fundamental knowledge of animal feedstock composition, analysis and animal nutrition.
Module Learning Outcome
On successful completion of this module the learner will be able to:
# Module Learning Outcome Description
MLO1 Examine the basic structures, and properties of agricultural relevance, of the common groups of biomolecules and animal feedstuffs.
MLO2 Summarise the process of recombinant DNA technology and its benefit to the agricultural community.
MLO3 Analyse the cell's metabolic pathways, their inter-relationships and impact on animal health, nutrition and meat quality.
MLO4 Evaluate the nutrient requirements of farm animals for maintenance, growth, reproduction and lactation.
MLO5 Summarise the nutritional composition of the major animal feed categories and the associated analytical techniques used in their determination.
MLO6 Apply theoretical concepts and practical competence in selected biochemical/nutrition related techniques.
Pre-requisite learning
Module Recommendations
This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is strongly recommended before enrolment in this module. You may enrol in this module if you have not acquired the recommended learning but you will have considerable difficulty in passing (i.e. achieving the learning outcomes of) the module. While the prior learning is expressed as named DkIT module(s) it also allows for learning (in another module or modules) which is equivalent to the learning specified in the named module(s).
No recommendations listed
Module Indicative Content
Introduction to biochemistry
Biochemistry and organisation of cells. Components of cells: Structure and function. Water as a solvent for biochemical reactions.
Molecular Biology
Nucleic acids. DNA replication, transcription and protein translation. Introduction to recombinant DNA techniques.
Energies and Metabolism
Carbohydrates, lipids and compounds of nitrogen and their relevance in nutrition. Aerobic and anaerobic respiration and their modes of operation.The cell's metabolic pathways and their inter-relationships and impact on animal health, nutrition and meat quality.
Ruminant and Non-Ruminant Nutrition
Voluntary Food Intake. Components of food. Quantifying the nutrient content of foods. Partitioning of food energy. Dietary requirements for protein, energy, minerals and vitamins. Diet specifications for a range of farm animals.
Animal Feedstuff Composition and Analysis
Chemical composition of the main feedstuffs relevant in farm animal nutrition (grass, conserved forage, energy feeds, protein feeds, various by-products) Proximate Analysis of feedstuffs. Forage quality and analysis. Modern laboratory methods for feedstuff evaluation (ie NIRS, Dumas, Van Soest Fibre System)
Ration Formulation
Basis of ration formulation. Ration specifications for a range of farm animals. Least cost ration formulation. Estimating the value of alternative feeds. Maximum inclusion levels, practical formulation of rations using appropriate software.
Practical class
Demonstration of laboratory instrumentation used in the analysis of animal feed, proteins, carbohydrates, lipids and DNA.
Module Assessment
Assessment Breakdown%
Final Examination50.00%
Module Special Regulation


Part Time On Campus

No Course Work
No Project
Assessment Type Practical/Skills Evaluation % of Total Mark 50
Marks Out Of 0 Pass Mark 0
Timing n/a Learning Outcome 1,2,5,6
Duration in minutes 0
Assessment Description
Students will focus on improving their practical skills, while also dealing with obtaining and analysing data in addition to drawing conclusions from the data. Students will participate in online practical classes and be given in-class exercises on a bi-weekly basis. Group (peer-assisted learning) work will be encouraged.
Final Examination
Assessment Type Formal Exam % of Total Mark 50
Marks Out Of 0 Pass Mark 0
Timing End-of-Semester Learning Outcome 1,2,3,4,5
Duration in minutes 0
Assessment Description
End of semester examination
Reassessment Requirement
A repeat examination
Reassessment of this module will consist of a repeat examination. It is possible that there will also be a requirement to be reassessed in a coursework element.

DKIT reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload

This module has no Full Time On Campus workload.
Workload: Part Time On Campus
Workload Type Contact Type Workload Description Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload Hours
Lecture Contact 2 weekly lectures, delivery will be shared between DkIT and Teasgasc Ballyhaise staff. Every Week 2.00 2
Practical Contact 1 x 4 hour Practical class Every Week 0.50 0.5
Independent Study Non Contact Self/Group study Every Week 2.00 2
Directed Reading Non Contact Textbooks/Papers/Online resources Every Week 2.00 2
Online Contact Contact Online contact to support virtual practical exercises. Every Second Week 0.50 1
Total Weekly Learner Workload 7.00
Total Weekly Contact Hours 3.00
Module Resources
Recommended Book Resources
  • J.M. Chesworth,T. Stuchbury,J.R. Scaife. (2012), An Introduction to Agricultural Biochemistry, Springer Science & Business Media, p.512, [ISBN: 978-94-009-1441-4].
  • Mc Donald, P., Edwards,R.A., Greenhalgh,JFD, Morgan,C.A., Sinclair,L.A., Wilkinson, R.G. (2011), Animal Nutrition, 7th. Prentice Hall, [ISBN: 978-140820423].
Supplementary Book Resources
  • Raymond S. Ochs. (2012), Biochemistry, 1st. Jones & Bartlett Publishers, p.413, [ISBN: 9781449661373].
  • Faithfull, N. T.. (2002), Methods in Agricultural Chemical Analysis: A Practical Handbook, 1st. CABI Publishing, [ISBN: 978-085199608].
This module does not have any article/paper resources
Other Resources