KJB100 Introduction to Biochemistry

Credits (ECTS):5

Course responsible:Åsmund Røhr Kjendseth

Campus / Online:Taught campus Ås

Teaching language:Norsk

Limits of class size:100

Course frequency:Annually

Nominal workload:

  • Lectures/activities: 36 hours
  • Individual study: 89 hours

Teaching and exam period:The course runs over 13 weeks in the fall parallel and assessment takes place in the same period.

About this course

This course is an introduction to biochemistry. The key concepts in biochemistry is to understand how living organisms convert energy and mass (metabolism) and how this is regulated.

The foundation for understanding metabolism at a molecular level is provided by a thorough introduction to the different structures and properties of the building blocks that are turned into proteins, fats, carbohydrates and DNA. The focus is then directed towards metabolism by highlighting the flow of energy in biological processes and their regulation.

In the weekly sessions, students will first get an introduction to the key concepts of energy, structure and function and storage of biological information. Furthermore, the topics listed under learning outcomes are introduced in turn, while at the same time being viewed in the context of the key concepts. Emphasis is placed on students being able to understand how biochemical processes are linked to the cycles in nature, especially those that affect the climate and stability of ecosystems, and that they should be able to draw parallels to challenges related to achieving the UN's sustainability goals.

The teaching will be focused on problem solving and the use of digital aids that can increase understanding about biochemical issues (for example visualization of biomolecules).

Learning outcome


After completing the course, the student should have an understanding of:

  • General principles on how energy and mass are converted in biochemical reactions
  • How central biomolecules such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats and DNA are built up and what functions and chemical properties they have
  • What enzymes are and how they catalyze biochemical reactions
  • How central biomolecules are metabolized in the body (metabolism/ cellular respiration)
  • How biochemical reactions are regulated and what homeostasis is
  • How biological membranes are constructed and how signals and molecules are transmitted across such barriers.


After completing the course, the students should have the ability to recognize different types of biomolecules, understand energy conversion in biological systems and storage of genetic information. The students should also be able to reflect on these topics.

General competence:

After completing KJB100, students will have a general knowledge of biomolecules and of metabolism and genetic information storage. This will make the students ready for further courses in e.g. biochemistry, molecular biology, nutrition and natural chemistry.

  • Lectures/activities and individual study.
  • CANVAS. Questions can be addressed to teachers. E-mail can be sent to course responsible.
    • General chemistry equivalent to KJM100.
  • Combined assessment. The weekly quizzes are evaluated as a single portfolio and awarded a single grade (A-F) per student.

    The final grade (combined assessment) is awarded on the basis of a written exam (3.5 hours) (80%) and the grades of the portfolio assessment (20%).

  • An external examiner approves the examination questions in the final digital exam. Internal examiner on weekly tests.
  • 3 hours of lectures and activities per week.
  • 5 credits against KJB200
  • Special requirements in Science