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PHSL101 Physiology for Sport and Exercise

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An introduction to the function of the musculoskeletal, nervous, cardiovascular, blood, respiratory, endocrine, gastrointestinal, immune, urinary and reproductive systems of the human body.

This paper is an introduction to human systems physiology through exploration of the function of the various organ systems and their responses in exercise and sport. It is intended for Physical Education students enrolled in the Physical Education, Activity, and Health, Exercise and Sport Science, and Sport Development and Management majors.

Paper title Physiology for Sport and Exercise
Paper code PHSL101
Subject Physiology
EFTS 0.15
Points 18 points
Teaching period Semester 2 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,110.75
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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HUBS 191, HUBS 192, PHSE 191, PHSE 192, PHSL 200-level papers
Recommended Preparation
ANAT 101
Schedule C
(i) This paper is intended for students taking the Physical Education, Activity and Health; Exercise and Sport Science; or Sports Development and Management major subjects. (ii) May not be used to progress to the Physiology major or minor subject for BSc. (iii) May not be taken concurrently with or after having passed any 200-level PHSL paper.

Required for: BAppSc major in Physical Education, Activity and Health; BSc major in Exercise and Sport Science.

Recommended for: Bachelor of Science in Sport Development and Management; Bachelor of Arts in Sport Development and Management.

Non-Physical Education students interested in PHSL 101 should normally have passed at least 108 points and should contact the Department of Physiology prior to selecting this paper in eVision.

PHSL 101 may not be taken concurrently with or after having passed any PHSL 200-level paper.


Teaching staff

Convenor: Jennifer Schack
Lecturers: Associate Professor Regis Lamberts
Dr Michelle Munro
Sam O'Hara
Dr Zoe Ashley
Jennifer Schack
Roslyn Kemp
Aisya Zamri

Note, teaching staff may change. Check department website for updates.

Paper Structure

The paper is delivered as a series of integrated lectures and laboratory classes. Internal assessment will be by two mid-semester tests, each worth 15% of the course mark and by 20 MCQ warm-up or cool-down tests (2 for each of 10 lecture modules, each worth 1% of the course mark). The final MCQ examination is worth 50% of the total mark.

Lecture topics: Life processes, Nerve and Muscle, Nervous System, Respiratory System, Cardiovascular System, Immune System, Endocrine System, Reproduction System, Gastrointestinal System, Urinary System

Laboratory classes: Cell Physiology and Homeostasis, Nerve and Muscle, Nervous System, Cardiovascular System, Endocrine System, Respiratory, Renal and GI System Integration

Teaching Arrangements

39 lectures complemented by twelve 1.5 hour lab classes.


Required: Martini et al. (2018). Visual Anatomy and Physiology, 3rd ed, Pearson.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Ethics, Information literacy, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this paper will

  1. Understand why constancy of the internal environment in humans is important, including the basic mechanisms by which this achieved and how extensively it can be stressed by exercise and the environment
  2. Understand the normal function of the major physiological systems in humans, specifically: muscular, peripheral and central nervous, cardiovascular, respiratory, blood, immune, endocrine, gastrointestinal, and renal/urinary
  3. Have a rudimentary understanding of the reproductive system, particularly how males' and females' reproductive systems shape growth and development, and vice versa, and how exercise can affect this system
  4. Appreciate that all physiological systems are heavily interrelated and are also impacted by a stress such as exercise.
  5. Be able to access, synthesise and interpret information
  6. Have knowledge of the basic parameters - including their normal levels - of cardiovascular and respiratory function, including the skills to measure these parameters (e.g. blood pressure, haematocrit, minute ventilation)
  7. Be able to interpret graphical and numerical data and to solve problems
  8. Work and communicate well in groups
  9. Have additional computer-based skills for acquiring biophysical information

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Semester 2

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Monday 08:00-08:50 28-34, 36-41
Tuesday 08:00-08:50 28-34, 36-41
Wednesday 08:00-08:50 28-34, 36-41


Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend one stream from
A1 Tuesday 10:00-11:50 29-34, 36-41
A2 Tuesday 12:00-13:50 29-34, 36-41
A3 Thursday 10:00-11:50 29-34, 36-41