NS4208: Animal Physiology

Please note this module descriptor is indicative of the structure of this course and may be subject to change.

NS4208: Animal Physiology

Module Title Animal Physiology
Module Code NS4208
Module Tutor Richard Rolfe
School School of Natural and Social Sciences
CAT Points 15
Level of Study 4
Brief Description

This module will explore the major levels of complexity of invertebrate and vertebrate life. It will cover the importance of structure/function relationships in physiology, at the molecular, cellular, tissue and organ-systems level. Students will study the anatomy and physiology of the main systems in vertebrate and invertebrate organisms. The evolution of the main body systems will be highlighted and a comparative approach will be used to highlight the diversity of animal life. Physiological adaptations of animals to the environment will be discussed.

This module introduces a variety of laboratory techniques for investigating cellular and physiological processes, and conducting controlled experiments.

The module will build on molecular biology of the cell taught in NS4207. It will provide a knowledge of animal physiology which will support the study of whole organisms (NS5206 Equine Biology and NS6202 Avian Biology) and behaviour (NS5207 Animal Behaviour).

Indicative Syllabus

Physiology; comparative physiology; anatomy; evolution of multicellular organisms; levels of organisation found in animal life; regulation of physiological processes (homeostasis); cell function; tissue organisation; major tissue types; the main organ systems of invertebrate and vertebrate life – to include - immune, skeletal, nervous, endocrine, reproductive and digestive systems; physiological adaptations to environmental extremes (such as temperature); mechanisms of adaptation (neurons and hormones); physiology of life cycles and seasonal cycles; and animal locomotion.

Learning Outcomes

A student passing this module should be able to:

  1. Understand the levels of organisation within invertebrates and vertebrates.
  2. Understand the function of the main systems that support multicellular life
  3. Relate these processes to the physiological functioning of whole organisms
  4. Understand how animals adapt to their environment
  5. Perform a range of laboratory techniques important to the study of cellular / physiological processes; and present and interpret results clearly
Learning and Teaching Activities Scheduled Contact Hours: 36
Independent Learning Hours: 114
Assessment (For further details see the Module Guide) 001: 50% Coursework: Individual, standard written: 1500 words or equivalent
002: 50% Written Exam: End of module, digital: 1.00 hours
Special Assessment Requirements None
Indicative Resources The current reading list can be found in the Module Guide, which your lecturer should make available via Moodle.

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