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PHSL251 Exploring Human Physiology

Further examination of the function of nervous, endocrine, cardiovascular, respiratory, renal, and gastrointestinal systems of the human body.

PHSL 251 will build on and extend your understanding of the physiology of the nervous, muscular, cardiovascular, respiratory, renal and gastrointestinal system topics that you were introduced to in HUBS 191 and HUBS 192.

Paper title Exploring Human Physiology
Paper code PHSL251
Subject Physiology
EFTS 0.175
Points 21 points
Teaching period Semester 1 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,331.58
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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HUBS 191 and HUBS 192 and two of BIOC 192, CELS 191, CHEM 191, PHSI 191
(PHSL 231 and PHSL 232 and PHSL 233), MELS 251, PHCY 251, PHTY 251
Schedule C
Not available for students in the Physiology major or minor subject for BSc, or for the Functional Human Biology major for BBiomedSc.


Course co-ordinator: Liz Erickson

Teaching staff

Convener: Liz Erickson

Lecturers: Associate Professor Regis Lamberts

Liz Erickson

Dr Joon Kim

Dr Shane Ohline

Associate Professor Daryl Schwenke

Associate Professor Pete Jones

Jennifer Schack

Dr Toni-Ann Alsop

Dr Andrew Bahn

Please note: Teaching staff maybe subject to change.

Paper Structure

50 lectures on topics including:

  • Body composition
  • Nerve
  • Muscle
  • Somatic and special senses
  • Pain
  • Higher brain functions
  • Endocrinology
  • Cardiovascular system
  • Respiration
  • Kidney
  • Gastrointestinal system
  • Exercise
  • Temperature regulation

Five laboratories, including self-directed clinical case studies:

  • Cell physiology
  • Nerve and muscle physiology and case study (diabetic neuropathy)
  • Cardiac cycle and case study
  • Respiratory control and case study
  • Kidney and gut and case study (vitamin B12 deficiency)
Teaching Arrangements
Four lectures each week and five laboratory sessions, usually on alternate weeks (check timetable to confirm laboratory dates).

Widmaier Vander's "Human Physiology”, ISE 16th edn, McGraw Hill, Inc., New York, 2022.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Interdisciplinary perspective, Scholarship, Critical thinking, Ethics, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this paper will acquire extensive knowledge of the physiology and pathophysiology of body systems.

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Semester 1

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Monday 09:00-09:50 9-14, 16-22
B1 Tuesday 09:00-09:50 9-14, 16, 18-22
C1 Wednesday 09:00-09:50 9-14, 16-22
E1 Friday 09:00-09:50 9-13, 16-22


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Wednesday 14:00-16:50 10, 12, 17, 19, 21