PATH 427 (3 cr): Basic Principles of Infection Prevention and Control

PATH427 - Basic Infection Control Principles

Course Outline

This course is delivered online in a Problem-Based Learning format.

Student Profile

Jacquie Sarna, Access Studies student

“I made the choice to enrol in the UBC program as it is entirely online and uses a [WebCT] based format which I was familiar with from the…courses that I had previously completed.”

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Instructor permission required.

Course Duration

This course is 20 weeks in length (January through May) and extends beyond the regular UBC semester. If this is a concern for graduation, financial loans, or other deadlines you should not take the course. No exceptions or provisions will be made for early completion of the course.

Course Description

Pathology 427 introduces students to the principles of infection prevention and control, outbreak investigation and management, and surveillance techniques as well as other topics pertinent to long-term care, paediatric and community infection control.

The case topics include (but are not limited to): Isolation and barrier precautions, surveillance of nosocomial infections, infection control precautions, outbreak investigation, antibiotic resistance, common communicable diseases (e.g. tuberculosis, influenza), pediatric issues in infection control as well as the unique perspectives of long-term and ambulatory care.

Intended Students

This course will be of interest to anyone working in healthcare who would like to know about the prevention and control of infections, particularly nursing, infection control practitioners, rehabilitation sciences, public health, etc.  It may also be of interest to those with a science background, e.g., epidemiology, integrated sciences, or medical microbiology, or those who wish to further their knowledge in infection control.

Course Objectives

Students who complete the course will have gained knowledge in:

  • The fundamental principles of Body Substance Precautions, Standard Precautions, isolation requirements and appropriate barrier protection;
  • Recognition of common communicable diseases and their management;
  • Use of best evidence to support practice decisions;
  • The approach to outbreak identification, investigation and management;
  • Research skills in the area of online searches;
  • Experience with the use of case-based learning to direct individual learning.

Course Outline

  1. Introduction to the Course/Understanding the infection control structure
  2. Infection Control Precautions
  3. Nosocomial Infections and their surveillance/Outbreak Investigation
  4. Antimicrobial resistance
  5. Infection control in specialized care areas
  6. Paediatric issues in infection control
  7. Device-related and blood-borne infections
  8. Infection control and long-term care
  9. Community and ambulatory care issues in infection control

Course Evaluation

Students will be assessed on their participation in the interactive group learning process, the midterm exam, and the final exam. Assessment breakdown is as follows:

  • Participation = 30%
  • Midterm = 30%
  • Final = 40%


  • Lautenbach E., et al. Practical Healthcare Epidemiology, 4th Ed., Chicago Press, 2018. ISBN:9781107153165


  • Red Book, 2018 Report on the Committee on Infectious Diseases, 31st Ed., ISBN: 9781581109269
  • Heymann, D. Control of Communicable Diseases Manual, 20th Ed., ISBN: 9780875530185

PATH427 Textbook Order Form


Dr. Elizabeth Bryce: Dr. Bryce holds subspecialty degrees in Internal Medicine and Medical Microbiology.

Dr. Diane Roscoe: Dr. Roscoe holds fellowships in Internal Medicine, Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology.

For information on the Certificate in Infection Prevention and Control please visit: