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BSc Biotechnology with Industrial/Professional Experience / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Body Systems

Course unit fact file
Unit code BIOL10811
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? No


Body Systems introduces the concepts underpinning physiology and the major tissue types that form the structures of the body. You will examine the relationship between the cardiovascular and respiratory systems, learning how diseases of these systems can be interpreted in terms of altered physiology and anatomy.


To introduce students to the concepts that underpin physiology: homeostasis, and the major tissue types that form the body structures. To consider the detailed anatomy and physiology of the human cardiovascular and respiratory systems.

Learning outcomes

To understand the interrelationship between structure and function of each of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems and how these two systems contribute to homeostasis. To understand how some common diseases of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems can be interpreted in terms of altered physiology and anatomy.


Homeostasis and Control System: Evolution of an internal 'sea' (the extracellular fluid) and maintenance of a relative constancy in its composition. Endocrine and neural control systems. The autonomic nervous system and the concept of dual control.

Tissue Diversity: An introduction to the various tissue types that form the body structures. Lining and covering tissues, muscle tissues, supporting tissues, haemopoietic tissues and the physiology of blood.

The Cardiovascular System: Structure and physiology of blood vessels. The gross anatomy of the circulations. The anatomy of the heart and initiation of the heart beat. Energetics of the circulation and the cardiac cycle. The control of cardiac output and of blood pressure. Local control of the circulation. Physiology of the coronary and pulmonary circulations. Diseases of the cardiovascular system.

The Respiratory System: Anatomy of the respiratory tract and lungs. Anatomy and physiology of ventilation. Gaseous exchange in the lungs. Transport of oxygen and carbon dioxide in blood. The control of breathing. Diseases of the lung.

Employability skills

Analytical skills
Coursework comprises short online assessments which may require students to analyse material to choose the correct answer.
Problem solving
Coursework comprises short online assessments which may require a degree of problem solving.
Students are encouraged to read around the lecture material.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written exam 95%
Set exercise 5%

Feedback methods

Feedback will be given via Blackboard Learning Modules and online formative assessments.

Recommended reading

A number of anatomy and physiology textbooks are appropriate for this unit. Reading the relevant information in more than one book is a good habit to get into as different books will explain things in different ways and aid your understanding. If you prefer to buy your own textbook it is suggested that you try before you buy. The book listed is recommended, but others are equally good.

  • Martini, F.H., Nath, J.L. & Bartholomew, E.F. Fundamentals of Anatomy and Physiology 11th Edition, 2018, Pearson Education - Recommended

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 1
Lectures 22
Independent study hours
Independent study 77

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Nick Ashton Unit coordinator

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