Medical Physiology | Abertay University

Medical Physiology


This module builds on the fundamental physiological processes studied in LSC102. A more in depth exploration of key systems will be used to investigate the pathophysiology of key diseases with a focus on deviation from healthy physiology; medical approaches to interventions and/or treatment will be discussed. There will be a strong focus on the genetic inheritability of these disorders as well as a key focus on the role of genetic mutations.


The aim of this Module is to provide the student with : a deeper understanding of key physiological systems and how genetics can play an important part in health and disease. Whilst studying the core material, the module also aims to focus on developing key scientific writing skills including, literature searches, paper reading and scientific writing.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module the student should be able to:

1.  Have an advanced understanding of the functioning of key physiological systems.

2.  Relate knowledge of key physiological systems above to the underlying pathophysiology of key disorders.

3.  Show an appreciation for the medical intervention and treatment of these key disorders.

4.  Develop skills in scientific literature searches, scientific writing skills and independent learning.

Indicative Content

1 Advanced Neurophysiology

a focus on synaptic physiology, plasticity and the role of these processes in learning, memory and addiction. Dysfunction of important physiological processes in key neurological disorders.

2 Advanced reproductive physiology

a focus on infertility, the underlying pathophysiology and treatments.

3 Advanced musculoskeletal physiology

a focus on skeletal muscle and associated structures, tendons, ligaments bones etc. Pathophysiology of skeletal muscle e.g. muscular dystrophy.

4 An introduction to scientific writing

will focus on literature searches, paper reading and scientific writing skills.

Statement on Teaching, Learning and Assessment

This module will be delivered as a series of lectures, labs, tutorials and workshops. The tutorials will support the lab work whilst the workshop will focus on scientific writing and skills required for the coursework submission. The aim of the coursework is to encourage independent learning at an early stage, whilst beginning to develop scientific writing skills including literature searches and reading of scientific papers. The workshops are designed to support this process of independent learning and writing as it’s recognised that these are skills which are developing at this stage. The first workshop will focus on literature searches and paper reading whilst the second will continue with the reading and then focus on scientific writing. This process should feedforward into later stage modules (e.g. LSC404) where the onus is even more focused on independent learning and scientific writing. The first two labs will focus on reproductive physiology, whilst the second two will focus on the neurophysiology of locomotion. Data generated in the lab will be needed to answer certain questions in the exam. As such students will be strongly encouraged to attend, engage and write up the labs, giving them the best chance of achieving a high exam grade. Practical/Workshop workload outlined below reflect 4x3 hour lab and 4x3 hour workshops.

Teaching and Learning Work Loads

Total 200
Lecture 24
Tutorial/Seminar 6
Supervised Practical Activity 18
Unsupervised Practical Activity 0
Assessment 50
Independent 102

Guidance notes

Credit Value – The total value of SCQF credits for the module. 20 credits are the equivalent of 10 ECTS credits. A full-time student should normally register for 60 SCQF credits per semester.


We make every effort to ensure that the information on our website is accurate but it is possible that some changes may occur prior to the academic year of entry. The modules listed in this catalogue are offered subject to availability during academic year 2018/19 , and may be subject to change for future years.