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Unit information: Physiology 1B in 2021/22

Please note: It is possible that the information shown for future academic years may change due to developments in the relevant academic field. Optional unit availability varies depending on both staffing, student choice and timetabling constraints.

Unit name Physiology 1B
Unit code PHPH10018
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Dr. Zoe Palmer
Open unit status Not open

Normally GCSE (grade C minimum) Double Science plus one biological or physical science A-level

Physiology 1A



School/department School of Physiology, Pharmacology & Neuroscience
Faculty Faculty of Life Sciences


This unit will provide an introduction to physiology, with an emphasis on mammalian physiology. The following topics are covered: kidney, gastrointestinal tract, endocrinology and reproduction. Practical classes are supported by an online dynamic laboratory manual, eBioLabs and complement the lecture topics. Practicals include investigating the function of the human renal and reproduction systems. Students also undertake an extended practical project planning, data handling and presentation of results.


  • To promote understanding of the basic physiological mechanisms governing the function of mammalian body systems.
  • To expose students to a range of activities thereby developing the attitudes and skills desirable for scientific study.
  • To develop the attributes necessary for lifelong learning.

Intended learning outcomes

By the end of the unit you should be able to:

  1. explain the concepts of internal environment and homeostasis
  2. explain how the various systems of the body work together to maintain homeostasis
  3. explain the physiology of the renal, gastrointestinal, endocrine and reproductive system;
  4. interpret experimental procedures with due regard to the scientific method;
  5. analyse and test physiological data using appropriate statistical techniques;
  6. present and discuss physiological data

Teaching details



eBiolabs (supporting practicals)

Large group tutorials/workshops

Assessment Details


Coursework 30%

  • Extended practical presentation - 10% (1-9)
  • Extended practical written communication – 10% (9)
  • Practical assessments via eBioLabs - 10% (7-9)

Exam (end of unit) 70% (1-5)

Reading and References

There are many good Physiology textbooks and we would encourage you to pick one that suits you. In the list below textbooks 1, 2, 3 and 7 are comprehensive physiology textbooks and textbooks 4, 5 and 6 are more accessible and may be better for getting to grips with the basics.

  1. Berne & Levy - Physiology
  2. Guyton & Hall - Textbook of Medical Physiology
  3. Vander, Sherman & Luciano
  4. Costanzo (3nd Edn) - Physiology
  5. Davies, Blakeley & Kidd - Human Physiology
  6. Bray, Cragg, MacKnight, Mills &Taylor - Lecture Notes on Human Physiology
  7. Ganong - Human Physiology

You should be aware that the Medical Library stocks a good range of textbooks including those listed above.