Length: 2 weeks

Level: 2nd year biomaterials/bioengineering

Key Skills: Group work, communication and independent study

Student Output: Group report and presentation and peer assessment

This is a group-based case study that looks at haemodialysis and the polymer membranes used for the separation process. Working in a group of 3-4 people, select one of the following topics (or another topic related either to haemodialysis or to polymer membranes for separation processes), and carry out web/literature/library search for information.

  • Biocompatibilty of haemodialysis membranes
  • Choice of polymers for membrane separation
  • Making holes in membranes
  • Structure of membranes for gas separation

Trip to Dialysis Unit

This case study involves a trip to a local dialysis unit. There you will receive a lecture on dialysis and also have a look at some dialysis machines in the hospital. It is hoped that this will add to your understanding of the topic.


Each group should prepare a 2-3 page summary of your findings. This should be word-processed, and should give all the names of all group members. Full references should be given for all you sources (web addresses for web sites, and authors, journal, volume, pages, and a year for papers). Credit will be given for inclusion of information from scientific papers. (tips for writing reports)

Each group will also give a 10 minute presentation (to be given by 2 members of the group). The presentation should make appropriate use of overheads. At the end of the presentation, related questions will be asked of other members of the group. Any group member not attending the session will have marks deducted. (tips for giving effective presentations)

The summary will be collected at the same time the presentations are given. The mark for the summary will be given to all group members who have contributed to its preparation. An effort mark will be determined for each member of the group.












Cogan, M. G.  and Garovoy, M. R.  (1985), Introduction to Dialysis, Churchill Livingstone, New York.

Other sources of information include

the scientific literature (see Web of Science, Medline etc)

online magazines

information from manufacturers