Laboratory Skills and Microbiology (90 CPD Credits)
5 Day Course
Available Dates

The Laboratory Skills and Microbiology course is designed and delivered by real scientists to provide university science students with an opportunity to gain hands on experience using real laboratory equipment. The course supports university and work experience applications, as almost all universities and employers now require previous laboratory experience before considering an applicant.


The programme provides practical laboratory-based training in laboratory safety, creating nanoparticles, aseptic technique, gram stains, ELISA and finishes with the opportunity to present scientific research and network with researchers from institutions including the University of Liverpool, the University of Cambridge, Pfizer & the University of Aberdeen.

What to expect

The Laboratory Skills and Microbiology (5 Days) programme runs from 9:30am – 4pm for 5 consecutive days with an hour break for lunch. We teach at a very low student to tutor ratio (5:1) meaning that students are supervised and encouraged throughout their course.

The course content is ideal for undergraduate and postgraduate students who wish to gain a solid foundation in laboratory skills and gain a better understanding of certain laboratory procedures. It is also ideal for adult learners who are looking to retrain in science as a taster of what laboratory work is like.

We ask students to design their own experiments and allow students to make (safe) mistakes and learn from these. We believe this helps students to develop independent research skills and gain confidence in their own ability in the laboratory.

Course Content

Day 1 – Laboratory Induction:

Students will be inducted into the laboratory and will be taught about laboratory health and safety, including how to complete a risk assessment and COSHH documentation. Students will learn how to prepare stock solutions using molarity calculations and use a balance to obtain the mass of chemicals. In the afternoon session, students will learn how to measure pH as well as how to perform a serial dilution, and then use absorbance data to plot a standard curve.

Day 2 – Nano-Toxicology

Students will use the skills they learned on day 1 to investigate the effect of toxic nanomaterials on lung macrophage cells.

Day 3 – Microbiology I

Students learn aseptic technique & how to culture E. coli and B. subtilis in nutrient broth, spread & streak plates. Students will investigate the effects of natural antimicrobials and pharmaceutical antibiotics, and culture bacteria from environmental samples.

Day 4 – Microbiology II and Immunology

During the morning session, students will gram stain bacteria from their cultures and observe stained bacteria under the microscope. Students will then analyse and discuss their microbiology results. In the afternoon session, students will get an in-depth understanding of pathology and immunology and will process a set of clinical samples using ELISA as a diagnostic assay to diagnose patients with an infectious disease. Students will use a plate reader to create a standard curve and have the opportunity to quantify and analyse their results. Students will be asked to consider their experimental design including how to decide on replicates and suitable experimental controls.

Day 5 – Student Presentations, Career Development Workshop and Certifications:

Student Presentations

At the end of the course students will present one of their experiments to the rest of the group in a formal presentation session. The audience will be able to ask questions and provide an opportunity for students to show what they have learned during the course of the week.

Career Development Workshop

Students will attend a networking session with BioGrad scientists where they will get the chance to discuss the many career paths within science and how to gain research experience. This will allow students to build on laboratory experience gained during this residential course and further their scientific careers.


Students attending this course are expected to be studying a science undergraduate degree however recent postgraduates or students who have been out of the laboratory for some time often attend to ‘up-skill’ their CV.

Learning Outcomes

During this 5-day course, students will learn transferable skills suitable for any laboratory work:

  • Prepare and complete COSHH forms and risk assessment for any chemical independently.
  • Make stock solutions and explain how they calculate the concentration to prepare the stocks.
  • Use the balance to weigh chemicals and prepare serial dilutions.
  • Use different types of pipettes safely, adjust and measure the pH of various stock solutions.
  • Measuring dose-response data using plate-based absorbance.
  • Prepare different solutions of nanomaterials; synthetic and natural, and investigate different effects of physicochemical properties of size, charge, and chemistry on the toxicity of macrophage cells.
  • Use aseptic technique to prepare agar media and growing two types of bacteria; make spread and streak plates.
  • Identify the best antibiotic to resist the growth of bacteria and calculate the zone of inhibition.
  • Perform and analyse ELISA results.
  • Maintain accurate lab book notes.

These techniques are taught correctly and allow time for students to repeat each aspect multiple times. When students leave this course, they are confident in their ability to enter a UK laboratory and work in a safe manner using essential pieces of equipment.

Course Endpoint

This course provides both current undergraduate and graduate scientists with a set of transferable skills and techniques in the laboratory, to progress on into jobs which will involve the use of these skills on a day-to-day basis. The skills and techniques learnt on this course, provide scientists with the tools to progress into postgraduate research projects involving these techniques.

Attendees will gain valuable insights into the range of careers and laboratory research opportunities available. On completion of the course, your new skills and laboratory techniques will be endorsed by our lecturers on LinkedIn and a reference can be provided upon request.

Course Details

The cost of this course is £999

You can reserve your place on this course with a deposit of just £249.75 if you are booking more than 28 days in advance. The remaining balance is due four weeks prior to the course start date

You can also choose to pay for this course in 6 instalments if you are booking more than 26 weeks in advance, or 12 instalments if you are booking more than 54 weeks in advance


Private accommodation is available at a special rate at 'Quest', our partnered accommodation provider.

Students attending courses for 16-19 year olds can select accommodation at the time of booking your course, the confirmation email sent after booking will contain a link for you to pay for your accommodation (at least 28 days prior to course commencement.)

Please note, accommodation is not included in the course fee. Private studio accommodation at Quest is available to BioGrad Education students at a special rate of £90/night.

See our accommodation page for more details


Science Park, Liverpool, L3 5TF

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This course lasts for 5 days

9:30am - 4pm

There are up to four payment options available:
  • Pay in full at the time of booking
  • Pay in 2 - 25% deposit with the remainder due 28 days before the course commences (only available if booking more than 28 days in advance)
  • Pay in 6 - 6 equal, monthly payments (only available if booking more than 26 weeks in advance)
  • Pay in 12 - 12 equal, monthly payments (only available if booking more than 54 weeks in advance)
Available Course Dates
Current Academic Year 01/09/2023 to 01/09/2024
13th May - 17th May 2024
Location: Science Park, Liverpool
Only 3 places left on this course

Sorry, we don't have any of these courses planned at the moment in the next academic year.