Explore the amazing physiological systems that keep us alive. Physiology is the study of normal function within living things. It examines and explains how organisms, organs, and cells carry out the chemical and physical processes that keep us going. The course “Physiology: the Science of Life“, developed by the University of Liverpool in partnership with the Physiological Society, takes you beneath the surface of three key physiological systems – respiratory, cardiovascular and nervous – allowing you to explore the discipline of physiology. You will also examine some of the practical uses of physiology and consider the exciting career opportunities available if you study physiology.
This course is aimed at anyone interested in how bodies work. You don’t need any past experience. The course might be of particular use for secondary school students studying biology and physiology, and considering further studies in these areas on degrees like medicine, dentistry or other healthcare and life sciences.
Physiology: the Science of Life – Course Content
The course includes the following topics:
- The cardiac cycle (atrial systole, ventricular systole and diastole);
- The structure and operation of the mammalian heart to its function, including the major blood vessels;
- The roles of the sinoatrial node (SAN), the atrioventricular node (AVN) and the bundle of His;
- How the use of electrocardiograms (ECGs) can aid the diagnosis of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and other heart conditions;
- How variations in ventilation & cardiac output enable rapid delivery of oxygen removal of carbon dioxide to tissue;
- How the heart rate and ventilation rate are controlled;
- The roles of the cardiovascular control & ventilation centers;
- How to investigate the effects of exercise on tidal volume and breathing rate using data from spirometer traces;
- How a nerve impulse (action potential) is conducted along an axon including changes in membrane permeability to sodium and potassium ions and the role of the nodes of Ranvier.
Summary of Course Main Features
- Educator: Terry Gleave
- Developers: The University of Liverpool and the Physiological Society
- Duration 3 weeks x 4 hours per week
- Start date: 25 September 2017