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2023/24 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

BMSC3139 Systems Neurophysiology

10 creditsClass Size: 122

Module manager: Dr Beatrice Filippi

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

Pre-requisite qualifications

Students must take either BMSC2118 or BMSC2123 prior to taking BMSC3139.


BMSC2123Sensory and Motor Neuroscience
BMSC2124Neurotransmitters and Disease

This module is not approved as a discovery module


To provide understanding of the neuronal control of the gastrointestinal and cardiorespiratory systems with an emphasis on networks and neuronal integration. We will also investigate how activity in these networks may contribute to disease states and potential treatments for some diseases based on manipulations of these networks and/or their targets.

Learning outcomes
On completion of this module students will be able to:
- Understand the complexity of the neural circuits of the brain controlling some physiological systems.
- Describe how the integration of sensory information from the body in brainstem circuits controls homeostatic functions.
- Describe CNS networks involved in control of gastrointestinal, cardiovascular and respiratory systems.
- Understand how activity in these networks may contribute to disease states.
- Describe potential treatments for diseases based on manipulations of these networks and/or their targets.
- Demonstrate understanding of original scientific papers

Skills outcomes
Analytical skills; Creative problem solving; Critical thinking; Planning & organisation; Time management.


- Sensing and controlling the body’s internal environment
- Regulation of body weight and food intake
- Central control of cardiovascular system – parasympathetic reflex pathways
- Central control of cardiovascular system - the sympathetic side
- Contribution of the nervous system to development and treatment of cardiovascular disease - heart failure and hypertension
- Central neuronal circuits controlling respiration

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Interactive Lecture51.005.00
Private study hours85.00
Total Contact hours15.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)100.00

Private study

- 86 hours of private study
- researching literature and preparing for exam.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

There is a practice exam question in one lecture slot of the module. The question is usually from a past paper and is made available prior to the session. Assessment and feedback is by peers at a subsequent lecture slot. Prior to assessment, the students are shown an outline answer and are guided through the assessment rubrics before they peer mark two scripts from other students.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
In-course AssessmentPatient Information leaflet30.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)30.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Exam typeExam duration% of formal assessment
Online Time-Limited assessment24 hr 70.00
Total percentage (Assessment Exams)70.00

The standard release time for an Online Time Limited Assessment (OTLA) will be 24hrs. Further guidance on the assessment will be provided in the module handbook/Minerva.

Reading list

There is no reading list for this module

Last updated: 24/07/2023 16:29:52


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