AP0311 - Introduction to Biomedical Sciences

What will I learn on this module?

You will receive an introduction to basic biological concepts relating to the organisation of the human organism.
You will learn to describe the molecular, cellular (cytology) and tissue (histology) organisation of mammals, with particular emphasis on humans, and explain relationships between form and function at each level.
You will find out about the basic principles of genetics including the structure and role of DNA in transmission of heritable information and the principles of Mendelian inheritance.
You will begin to describe the biochemical characteristics of living organisms and explain how the human form is built up by the physical and chemical processes of digestion, absorption and assimilation of food and how energy is supplied at cellular level by respiration.
You will learn about the concept of transport in humans by investigating gaseous exchange and transport of oxygen and carbon dioxide round the body by the heart, lungs and vascular system.
You will receive an introduction to the defence functions of the blood and characteristics of mammalian vascular systems which are important in understanding and managing disease (blood pressure, heartbeat, white blood cells, phagocytes, antibody production, blood groups).
You will be introduced to aspects of co-ordination, response and control in the human organism with reference to the processes of homeostasis and the endocrine and nervous systems.

How will I learn on this module?

You will learn through a combination of lectures, laboratory practical sessions and associated tutorials.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

All lecture material will be available on the University eLearning Portal, supplemented with guidance on further reading relevant to the subject matter.

Electronic feedback on the Blackboard assessment will be provided via the eLP to allow you to understand how you performed and how you can build on this performance in subsequent assessments within the programme.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
1. Describe and explain: the functional significance of the structures found in human organisms at all levels of organisation, basic principles of genetics, the physical and chemical processes of digestion and energy supply, transport processes by consideration of cardiovascular and respiratory structures and circulatory mediums (blood and lymph), infection immunity and defence and the roles of nervous and endocrine systems
Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
2. You will develop the skills of safe laboratory practice

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
3. Develop your skills in independent research will increase your scientific curiosity.

How will I be assessed?

Formative MCQ’s based around the 4 practical sessions will support MLOs KU1, IPSA 2 and PVA3.

Summative online MCQ’s based around the 4 laboratory practicals (50%) will support MLOs KU1, IPSA2 and PVA3.

Summative examination (MCQ’s and SAQ’s) (50%) Support MLOs KU1, IPSA 2 and PVA3.




AO0306, AP0307, AP0308 and AP0309.

Module abstract

You will explore functional significance of the structures found in humans and how these relate to their functions. You will begin at the molecular level and build up to concepts of human genetics and the transmission of heritable information. You will consider the biochemical constituents of living organisms, how they are obtained and assimilated through the physical and chemical aspects of digestion and how they are subsequently utilised at a molecular level throughout the body. Moving on to the organ and systems level you will explore transport process and the mediums that are involved, considering structure and function of the organs and process of the cardio-respiratory and circulatory systems. Finally, you will consider the human organism as a whole – exploring endocrine and nervous control of the entire body and the homeostatic process that sense and respond to change. You will also learn the skills to research and draft an essay plan.

Course info

UCAS Code Y002

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 1 year Full Time followed by a further 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Applied Sciences

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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