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Course Overview

Most of us have experienced common diseases like flu or less common ones like pneumonia. On this course, you’ll learn how pathogens cause infectious diseases and how these diseases are transmitted. You’ll examine the bacterial resistance to antibiotics, how this leads to serious infections like MRSA and reflect on approaches to address this problem. You’ll learn how the body’s immune system fights off disease and how resistance is gained. You’ll apply this knowledge to explore why immunization has been crucial in reducing the occurrence of disease or even eradicating deadly diseases.


Infectious diseases

  • What causes infectious diseases?
  • Transmission of disease
  • Antibiotics

The immune system

  • Fighting infection: the innate immune response
  • Fighting infection: the adaptive immune response Immunisation

The course is suitable for anyone with a general interest in the science behind causes of human disease. No previous knowledge or experience is required. If you are working in nursing, healthcare or social care, or just wish to learn more, this course is designed to support you as a professional.

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to…
  • Compare bacteria, viruses and parasites as causes of infectious disease
  • Describe different modes of transmission of infectious agents
  • Summarise what an antibiotic is and explain what is meant by resistance to antibiotics
  • Explain the basic components of the immune system
  • Explain the basic components of how the immune system fights invading pathogens