Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Monash University

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2015 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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12 points, SCA Band 2, 0.250 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.

FacultyFaculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
Organisational UnitDepartment of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
OfferedClayton First semester (extended) 2015 (Day)
Clayton First semester (extended) 2015 (Online)
Coordinator(s)Associate Professor Peter Temple-Smith and Dr Sally Catt


This unit will provide information about the infertile patient and the assisted reproduction technologies used to treat infertility. Students will identify the procedures performed in an IVF clinic and the roles of those involved. They will study the normal events of oocyte production in vivo and learn how these events are manipulated to increase the success of in vitro technologies. The unit also focuses on the outcomes of assisted reproductive technologies and its impact on the offspring generated. The theoretical basis of techniques such as oocyte collection and handling, oocyte maturation in vitro, preparation of oocytes for IVF, standard insemination, assessment of fertilization, and the handling, assessment, selection and transfer of embryos are presented and discussed in lectures, tutorials, and seminars. On-campus students will demonstrate knowledge of OHSE issues and aseptic techniques, and develop skills in laboratory maintenance, use of equipment, superovulation of mice and collection of embryos, embryo handling (mouse) and semen analysis (human).


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. recognise and explain the cause and impact of infertility and infertility treatment on patient couples and offspring
  2. identify and describe the roles of ART clinic staff: clinicians, scientific directors, embryologists, nurse coordinators, day surgery nurses, counsellors
  3. describe, trouble-shoot and audit the clinical processes in human assisted reproduction, including techniques for manipulating follicular growth, retrieving oocytes, analysing and preparing semen for insemination, assessing embryo development and embryo transfer
  4. identify causes of human male infertility and explain the treatment options, using hormonal and IVF based therapies
  5. demonstrate a comprehensive knowledge of OHSE regulations
  6. apply basic laboratory skills, such as performing dilutions, calculating the concentration of a solution, determining the molarity of a solution, testing pH and osmolarity, preparing media for in vitro culture and correct use and maintenance of equipment such as incubators, centrifuges and microscopes
  7. show competence in super ovulating and mating mice, harvesting gametes and creating embryos using in vitro fertilization techniques, collecting and culturing embryos and assessing their stage of development and development potential
  8. analyze human semen for parameters such as sperm motility, concentration, morphology and DNA integrity.


Written exam (2 1/2 hours) (45%)
Oral journal review presentation (20%)
Statistical exam (three parts) (15%)
Semen analysis written practical assignment (15%)
Peerwise (5%)

Workload requirements

24 hours contact per week (lectures, tutorials, forums, self-directed study, practical skills training) (on-campus).

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

Additional information on this unit is available from the faculty at: