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BIO1204 Introduction to Biomedical Sciences

Semester 2, 2013 External Toowoomba
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Sciences
School or Department : Biological & Physical Sciences
Version produced : 21 July 2014

Contents on this page


Examiner: Jianxiong Wang
Moderator: Kate Kauter


This course provides an introduction to the structure and function of human cells, tissues and organs. The emphasis on human anatomy, physiology and pharmacology as the basic biomedical sciences provides the foundation knowledge for subsequent studies in biomedical sciences.


The course will cover the fundamental concepts that allow a complex organism to function, with a key focus on humans. Key concepts include the control of body function including homeostasis, the functioning of the nervous system, nutrient processing, and the changes that occur in normal ageing independent of disease. The aim is to present a comprehensive overview of how structure and function are integrated at all levels from the cell to the organism. A residential school is offered for both on-campus and external students.


On completion of this course students will be able to:

  1. describe the structure and function of body cells, tissues and organs;
  2. demonstrate a basic understanding of the integration of organ systems to maintain a living body;
  3. understand the application of the scientific method in biomedical sciences;
  4. demonstrate basic communication skills in biomedical sciences.


Description Weighting(%)
1. HUMAN BODY ORGANISATION: Organ systems of the body, their major components and function. 2.00
2. HOMEOSTASIS: Mechanisms by which the body regulates its internal environment to maintain a constant condition; including sensors and effectors of these mechanisms. This will include maintenance of body temperature; discussion of the functions of the heart and vascular systems; intrinsic and extrinsic controls of cardiovascular function, the role of calcium ions. 23.00
3. NEUROTRANSMISSION: Mechanisms for the collecting and processing of information by the brain and possible ways that these processes can be changed by disease and drugs, including the physiology of polarised cells, nerve impulses and synapses; functions of major nervous system components; the concepts of brain centres, the major sensory impulse destinations and motor impulse origins; role of the nervous system for functional control of other body systems. 25.00
4. NUTRIENTS: The role of the gastrointestinal tract in allowing the absorption of nutrients for the body, and then the processing and possible storage of nutrients in the body; the concept of energy and its balance; obesity and its treatments. 25.00
5. AGEING: The changes that occur during ageing from molecular to cells to organs to organisms. 25.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

  • Marieb, EN & Hoehn, K 2013, Human anatomy and physiology, 9th edn, Pearson, Boston.
    (ISBN 10: 0-321-79917-8; ISBN 13: 978-0-321-79917-3 Pack includes, textbook, Interactive Physiology 10-System Suite, A Brief Atlas to the Human Body 2nd edn. and Access to myA&P Website with my eBook for Human Anatomy & Physiology, Eighth Edition.)

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
  • Appropriate reading materials will be made available for students through StudyDesk.

Student workload requirements

Activity Hours
Examinations 2.00
Lectures 26.00
Private Study 84.00
Residential Schools 16.00
Tutorial or Electronic Discussion 30.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
Assignment 40 40 25 Oct 2013 (see note 1)
PT A 2HR RESTRICTED EXAM CMA 60 40 End S2 (see note 2)
PT B 2HR RESTRICTED EXAM S/A 40 20 End S2 (see note 3)

  1. Examiner to advise details of the date for the assessment.
  2. Examination dates will be available during the Semester. Please refer to the examination timetable when published.
  3. Examination dates will be available during the Semester. Please refer to the examination timetable when published.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    It is the students' responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities (such as lectures, tutorials, laboratories and practical work) scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration. To maximize their chances of satisfying the objectives of the practical component of the course, students should attend and actively participate in the laboratory sessions in the course.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To complete each of the assignments satisfactorily, students must obtain at least 50% of the marks available for each assignment. To complete the examination satisfactorily, students must obtain at least 50% of the marks available for the examination. To complete the practical component satisfactorily, students must submit all the nominated practical reports and obtain at least 50% of the marks available for each report submitted. Written practical reports must be submitted within two teaching weeks (normally 14 days) of completion of the experimental work.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    If students submit assignments after the due date without (prior) approval of the examiner then a penalty of 5% of the total marks gained by the student for the assignment may apply for each working day late up to ten working days at which time a mark of zero may be recorded. No assignments will be accepted after model answers have been posted.

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the weighted aggregate of the marks (or grades) obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    Candidates are allowed access only to specific materials during a Restricted Examination. The only materials that candidates may use in the restricted examination for this course are: writing materials (non-electronic and free from material which could give the student an unfair advantage in the examination); calculators which cannot hold textual information (students must indicate on their examination paper the make and model of any calculator(s) they use during the examination). Students whose first language is not English, may, take an appropriate unmarked nonelectronic translation dictionary (but not technical dictionary) into the examination. Dictionaries with any handwritten notes will not be permitted. Translation dictionaries will be subject to perusal and may be removed from the candidate's possession until appropriate disciplinary action is completed if found to contain material that could give the candidate an unfair advantage.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    Any Deferred or Supplementary examinations for this course will be held in the examination period of the next semester.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. The due date for an assignment is the date by which a student must despatch the assignment to the USQ. The onus is on the student to provide proof of the despatch date, if requested by the Examiner. Students must retain a copy of each item submitted for assessment. This must be produced within five days if required by the Examiner.

  2. In order to attend laboratory classes, students must provide and wear appropriate personal protective equipment. This shall include a laboratory coat, closed in shoes, and safety glasses. Such equipment must be approved by supervising staff. Failure to provide and wear the appropriate safety equipment will result in students being excluded from classes.

  3. Harvard (AGPS) is the referencing system required in this course. Students should use Harvard (AGPS) style in their assignments to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The Harvard (AGPS) style to be used is defined by the USQ Library's referencing guide.