Core Modules and Elective Modules

In addition to the core modules in MDG5108 Biostatistics, MDG5771 Graduate Research Seminar, CDM5101 Fundamentals of Cancer Bology and CDM5102 Translational Cancer Research, a recommended list of elective modules has already been examined for suitability and is pre-approved by the CSI Graduate Program Academic Committee (GPAC). Other elective modules will be considered on a case by case basis depending on the students’ planned field of research interest.

The list of pre-approved modules will be periodically updated to reflect the changing graduate programmes in the faculties and the addition of new research groups with varying interests within the CSI Singapore.

Lecture materials can be found in IVLE.


CDM5101 Fundamentals of Cancer Biology (4MC)

This module provides students with a comprehensive overview of aberrant cell growth control mechanisms in cancer. The major lecture topics will include introduction/history of cancer, oncogenes, tumor suppressor genes, epigenetics, angiogenesis, metastasis, tumor immunology, cancer stem cells, animal models, DNA repair and regulation of the cell cycle, cell death and cell signaling. This module is an essential prerequisite for the Translational Cancer Research Module.

Coordinator : A/Prof Koji Itahana
Co-coordinator : Dr Tam Wai Leong
Course Offer date : January
Course Duration : 12 weeks
Maximum class size : 50
Examination : 50% Midterm Test and 50% Final Examination

CDM5102 Translational Cancer Research (4MC)

This course aims to apply knowledge of the molecular and cellular basis of cancer to improved prevention, diagnosis and treatment of this disease. Topics that will be covered include histopathology of cancer, molecular markers of early detection, molecular prognostic and predictive markers, mutation detection methods, drug discovery, targeted cancer treatments, familial cancers and pharmacogenetics. The major cancer types in the Asian region (breast, colorectal, lung, gastric, liver) will also be covered in depth, including etiology, molecular pathways and novel treatment approaches.





Dr Anand Jeyasekharan

Dr Takaomi Sanda

Course Offer date : August
Course Duration : 12 weeks
Maximum class size : 50
Examination : 50% Journal Club and 50% Final Examination
Pre-requisite : CDM5101 Fundamentals of Cancer Biology

MDG5108 Biostatistics for Basic Research (4MC)

This course is served as a concept-based introduction to biostatistics, or to the use of numerical techniques to extract information from data and facts. It is aimed at students, researchers in life and health sciences, and health professionals who wish to learn modern research methods. The main learning objectives are to understand the statistical concepts for data analysis, to interpret statistical results for scientific communications and able to objectively read/understand published work. Using computer software such as SPSS, the concepts and the statistical methods will be illustrated based on real life data arising from selected scientific and medical studies.

Coordinator : Dr Chan Yiong Huak
Course Duration : 9 weeks
Maximum class size : 120
Examination : Satisfactory or Unsatisfactory-comprising of a written paper

MDG5771 Graduate Research Cancer Seminar Module (4MC)

– Spread over 2 semesters

This course aims to cultivate a strong research culture among graduate students by exposing them to newly emerging fields of cancer research and to improve their communication skills through presentations and interactions with other researchers. Students are required to attend at least 7 out of the 10 seminars held each semester within CSI Singapore/Duke GMS for 2 consecutive semesters. In addition, they are required to present a research article at least once during the 2 semesters.

Coordinator : A/P Motomi Osato
Course Duration : 35 weeks
Maximum class size : 120
Examination : Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory-comprising of seminar attendance and presentation


CDM5103:Advanced Topics in RNA Biology and Human Diseases (4MC)

This module will expose graduate students to cutting-edge knowledge of RNA biology and its implications in human diseases. Landmark studies in the field will be discussed in order to offer a historical perspective, and publications from the latest issues of scientific journals will be referenced to learn about recent findings in this rapidly-evolving field. In addition, through lectures and interactive journal clubs conducted by clinical and basic science experts, students will discover how cell processes are regulated by RNA, RNA-binding proteins and the ribonucleoprotein complex, how changes in RNA can lead to disease, and how we can explore the therapeutic potential of RNA.

Coordinator : Dr Polly Chen Leilei
Co-Coordinator : Dr Yvonne Tay
Course Offer date : August
Maximum class size : 50
S/U option : Allow

MDG5214: Research skills (4MC) (Highly recommended)

This module equips students with essential relevant research skills. The students will learn how to perform a comprehensive literature review of the current evidence, critique journal articles, use software such as Endnotes to compile references, and learn how to write scientific papers and grants. Students will be taught how to develop a scientific poster or prepare oral presentations of scientific findings. In addition, students will learn about the major funding agencies and the Institutional Review Boards in Singapore, and the principles of research ethics.

Coordinator : Dr Chen Ee Sin, Department of Biochemistry
Course Offer date : August
Maximum class size : 135
S/U Option : Not allowed

MDG5220 Array and Omics (2MC)

The dawn of the human genome project in the 1990s has fuelled advances in 2 key technologies. They are the microarray technology for genomics and mass spectrometry for proteomics. From these platforms, many other sub-specialty fields have emerged including array comparative genomic hybridization, microRNA array, phosphoproteomics, protein arrays and metabolomics, etc. These tools have and will continue to propel discoveries in basic, translational and clinical research. The module will educate students on these tools and their applications in this era of functional genomics. It is the intent of this module that students will benefit by engaging these state-of-the-art technologies thus enhancing their research capabilities.

Coordinator : Dr Lim Yoon Pin, Department of Biochemistry
Course Offer date : August
Maximum class size : 40
S/U Option : Not allowed

MDG5221 Viral vectors for manipulating gene expression (2MC)

The ability to manipulate gene expression in a cell, an organ or a whole organism is an important aspect in the delineation of the molecular mechanisms in health and disease. Hence, many conventional as well as newly developed techniques for gene expression manipulation are being used in biomedical research. One of the most used strategies involves the use of genetically engineered viruses to infect mammalian cells. This module will highlight the principles and practical considerations on the research use of viral gene delivery vectors for (i) exogenous expression of genes, and (ii) knockdown of genes by RNA interference. To this end, the module will consist of lectures, paper discussion and group presentation.

Coordinator : A/Prof Tan Yee Joo, Department of Microbiology
Co-coordinator : Dr Justin Chu Jang Hann, Department of Microbiology
Course Offer date : August
Maximum class size : 30
S/U Option : Allowed

Timetables of the various modules are available here.

Please note that timetables may be subjected to changes.
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Module Registration Period for AY2018/2019 Semester 1
Online module registration period has not yet opened. Please enrol for modules here.

Registration for MDG5771 Graduate Research Seminar & Workshop: It is compulsory for all new students admitted in August 2018 intake and students who have been awarded an IP grade last semester for the module to register for this module online this semester.

Outcome of Module Registration
Results will be available online.

Please refer here for other module registration matters:

  • Add/Drop Period and Penalties
  • Declaration of Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) Option
  • Dropping of Modules
  • Students with outstanding fees or Negative Service Indicator (NSI) imposed on their record in MYISIS will be barred from registering modules offered by the University. Students are advised to settle all their outstanding bills or NSI imposed, if any, with the Office of Finance/Registrar’s Office to avoid any problems for the module registration
  • To take a module for credit (ie for a grade), students are required to sit for the module assessments. Students who audit a module will not receive a final grade. Audited modules will not appear on the student’s transcript/result slip. No record of attendance will be issued to auditors of a module.
  • The School reserves the right to cancel any module due to insufficient class size. Students will be notified of the cancellation if any, after the closing date of the registration