Physiology of Obesity and Non-communicable Diseases


This module will cover the aetiology, physiology and pathophysiology of obesity and the principal non-communicable diseases.


The aim of this Module is to provide the student with knowledge of obesity and a selection of non-communicable diseases that affect the human body and how these conditions impact upon lifestyle and lifespan.

Learning Outcomes

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

1.  Critically discuss the major pathophysiological processes and underlying mechanisms of obesity and a range of non-communicable diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and cancer.

2.  Describe the symptoms, prevalence, morbidity, mortality, and risk factors associated with the examined conditions.

3.  Identify and evaluate the importance of physical activity in the prevention and management of the human conditions covered.

4.  Critically analyse and evaluate scientific research publications in the area.

Indicative Content

1 Pathophysiology of Obesity

Critical overview of the pathophysiology of obesity and its exacerbation by physical inactivity.

2 Pathophysiology of Type II Diabetes

Critical overview of the pathophysiology of Type II Diabetes and its exacerbation by physical inactivity.

3 Pathophysiology of Cardiovascular

Critical overview of the pathophysiology of Cardiovascular disease and its exacerbation by physical inactivity.

4 Pathophysiology of Cancer

Critical overview of the pathophysiology of cancer and its exacerbation by physical inactivity.

Statement on Teaching, Learning and Assessment

A range of active learning paradigms will be employed in tutorials and lectures with the emphasis being on student led activities. Teaching and learning strategies will focus on developing students’ skills in accordance with Abertay graduate attributes. The core content of the module will be delivered in lectures, with tutorials, supporting students’ learning in small group environments. Tutorials will encourage discussion, application of the content and assessment. Students should also engage in tutor−directed tasks and self−directed learning activities (e.g. reading key texts and journal articles) to be completed outside of class time which will facilitate learning and assessment.

Teaching and Learning Work Loads

Total 200
Lecture 12
Tutorial/Seminar 24
Supervised Practical Activity 0
Unsupervised Practical Activity 0
Assessment 40
Independent 124

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 2019/10 , and may be subject to change for future years.