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Physiology Course for Medical St

Physiology Course for Medical Students

    PSL 131 Curriculum

CREDIT HOURS:                                    10 Credit Hours


  1. Textbook of Medical Physiology By:  Guyton

  2.  Human Physiology and Mechanism of Disease By:  Guyton and Hall

  3. Review of Medical Physiology By:  William F. Ganong

  4. Human Physiology from Cells to Systems By:  L. Sherwood 

The teaching material of PSL 131 is to be covered in one academic year.  The topics that will be taught during this year will be distributed in two halves.  Each half consists of about fifteen weeks’ period.  During these periods, continuous assessment examinations will also be conducted.


 The course curriculum has been carefully designed to present the important features of human physiology in a clear and concise manner.  The main aim of this curriculum is to provide essential facts and concept of medical physiology, which will aid in the understanding of clinical medicine.  During this period of the course, students will be trained to think independently and will be encouraged to integrate the knowledge.  A portion of the course will be devoted for recent and applied aspect of physiology.  This will help students to understand the basic mechanism involved and be able to explain some clinical problems.


This booklet contains the programmes including the flowcharts, instructional objectives and continuous assessment schedules for the academic year.  You are advised to keep this booklet always with you for reference. Please take note of the instructional objectives for both lectures and practicals.  Try to practice the following methodical approach:

  1. Read textbooks as shown in pre-reading sections of instructional objectives for each lecture/practical before coming to class.

  2.  Soon after the class, check for yourself whether you have been able to achieve all instructional objective as it was intended for.

  3.  Regularly attend all classes and practicals.  Do not miss quizzes that are taken only to check whether you are running along with the programmes or lagging behind.

  4.  You must actively participate in all the activities in the laboratory.

  5.  You must feel free to contact any of the teaching staff or facilitator, if you have questions or difficulties in the course, or you would like additional informations.

  6.  You are advised not to depend on handouts.


Weekly programme:      Lectures (4 per week)              Sun    8 - 9     A.M.

                                                                                                     Mon  9 - 10    A.M.

                                                                             Tues  9 - 10     A.M.

                                                                             Wed  8 - 9       A.M.

                                 Practical / Tutorial                Sun    1-4        P.M.

                                                                             Mon   10 - 12 P.M.


Physiology is an experimental science and hence all practicals are so designed as to cover the understanding of mechanisms and control systems involved in each organ of the body.  The students will participate in each practical so that they acquire the skill and be able to interpret the results obtained.  In few instances, there will be demonstration of a set-up to the students to explain the effects of drugs and to explain some basic mechanism involved.


 There will be one tutorial per week during this time.  Few queries will be given in the form of data to solve certain problems, which will be based on the lectures given in that week.  Tutorials will be arranged in small groups.  During this time students will further discuss any point they find difficult to understand during the lecture time.  Tutorials topic will be announced a few days before.  Students MUST study the topic such that they should be able to actively participate in the discussion.  In a few tutorial times, seminars and poster demonstrations will be conducted by students.  In these seminars the student will prepare and present a topic to his colleagues in the presence of the teacher.  Each student is expected to take up the presentation of seminar or a poster.  Some tutorial times will be used as review lectures.



Introduction to Physiology, Body Fluids, Blood, Nerve and Muscle, Autonomic Nervous System, Cardiovascular System.

 1-     During introductory classes, the students will learn about cell biology, body fluids and the mechanisms of transport across the cell membrane.

2-    Blood physiology teaching will include details about the formed elements, basic immunity and body defense, blood groups, blood transfusion and the mechanisms of haemostasis.

3-    Lectures on muscle and nerve will help students to understand the basic electrophysiology e.g., membrane potentials, action potentials.  The molecular basis of muscle contraction will also be covered in detail.

4-     Autonomic nervous system will include anatomical organization and the   effects of sympathetic and parasympathetic stimulation on different systems.

5-    Cardiovascular system will be covered in five parts namely heart as a pump, vascular system haemodynamics, regional circulation and pathophysiology of few abnormal states e.g. hypotension, shock and cardiac failure.


Respiratory System, Gastrointestinal System, Endocrine, Kidney, Acid Base Balance, and Reproduction.

1-    The respiratory system will be covered under the heading of ventilation, diffusion and perfusion, gas transport, mechanics and regulation of breathing.

2-    Gastrointestinal teaching will enable the students to understand the complex processes occurring along the gastrointestinal tract, secretory, absorptive and motility.  Emphasis is made on the mechanisms by which these functions are controlled.

3-    Kidney and excretory system lectures will cover the functional anatomy, filtration, re-absorption and secretion.  The concept of clearance and urine concentration mechanism will be explained.

4-    Acid base balance regulation by the body will be explained and abnormalities in the form of acidosis and alkalosis will be discussed.

5-  Endocrine system teaching will include glands like pituitary, thyroid, parathyroid, adrenal and pancreas.  Hormonal actions, regulation of secretion and disorder of function of each gland will be discussed.

6-   Reproductive system will be taught so that the students will be able to understand sex determination and differentiation, menstrual cycle, pregnancy and the action of hormones in both the sexes.


Total Marks         = 100

First Half :

First Continuous Assessment                                          = 12 marks (During 10th week)

Second Continuous Assessment                                     = 16 marks (During 17th week)

First Practical Examination and Lab Work                      = 5 marks  (Written paper)

Quizzes                                                                          = 4 marks

Total                                                                             = 38 marks 

N.B.  Second Continuous Assessment is comprehensive for lecture material covered during the whole first half of the year.

 Second Half :

Third Continuous Assessment                                         = 10 marks

Second Practical Examination and Lab Work                 =  7 marks (Written paper)

                  (Practical = 5 marks, Lab Work=2 marks)

2 Quizzes                                                                      =  5 marks

Total                                                                            =  22 marks

Final Examination at the End of the Year :

Written examination                                                      =  30 marks

Oral examination                                                           =  10 marks

Total                                                                           =  40 marks

Summary Of Marks Distribution:

Continuous Assessments:

1st half total (38 marks) + 2nd half total (22 marks) = 60 marks

Final Examination:

Written (30 marks) + Oral (10 marks) = 40 marks

N.B.  *Both the written and oral final exams at the end of the year are comprehensive for lecture material covered during the second half of the year plus applied physiology topics selected from material covered during the first half of the year.







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