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Page updated August 25, 2017

Denise Lim

BIO 5 Human Physiology

This course is an introduction to the functions of the healthy human body. Emphasis is on the underlying chemical basis of cells, tissues, organs, and body systems. This course examines general physiological principles, specific body systems, and the integration of multiple body systems.


BIO 5 Fall 2017 Syllabus
Study Guide

Learner Outcomes Standards

Lecture Hours: Fall 2017

Monday, Wednesday

6:00 pm – 7:20 pm

Aptos, room 615

Laboratory Hours

Section Number
Sect. 97950 (Abu-Shumays)
6:00 pm - 9:05 pm
Aptos, Room 618
Sect. 97951 (Roth)
9:30 am - 12:35 pm
Aptos, Room 618


Required Texts:

Human Physiology: An Integrated Approach, 7th ed., Dee Silverthorn, Pearson Education Inc., 2016. Available at the Cabrillo College Bookstore. Electronic versions of the textbook are also available from the publisher here. The 6th edition can be used as well, but be aware that there will be differences in the editions and it will not come with the online ancillaries (Mastering A&P) that include animations, interactive activities, and review questions.

Bio5 Lecture Notes - Denise Lim (PowerPoint slides). Will be available on Canvas.

Human Physiology BIO 5 Laboratory Manual, This will ONLY be available at the Print Smith.

Prerequisites: This requirement can be satisfied with CHEM 30A, CHEM 32, CHEM 3 + 3L (formerly CHEM 2) or CHEM 1A passed with a grade "C" or better.

Recommended Preparation: Bio 4, English 100, and Reading 100

LEARNER OUTCOMES (At the end of the semester, you should be able to...)
  1. Describe with detail the functioning of specific body systems at both the cellular level and at the system level and predict a body system's response to changes in homeostasis.
  2. Apply your understanding of the individual body systems to interactions between multiple body systems.

Here are my standards for my learning objectives. They will download as a PDF document.


Lecture Exams

      There will be a total of four lecture exams. Each exam, including the last exam, will be a unit exam.  The last exam will not be comprehensive. Exams will be multiple choice, with each question having only one correct answer.  The orange Parscore Scantron answer sheet and a #2 pencil will be needed for all lecture exams. These are available at the Cabrillo College Bookstore.
      Exams will be based on lectures and the material described in the Study Guide. The Study Guide is designed to help you direct your reading. The amount of emphasis placed on each topic in exams will be reflected by the amount of emphasis placed on a topic in lecture. 
      Lecture exams will be averaged based on the percentage scored, not on raw points. Each exam will be curved individually, based on the high score in the class.
      If you miss an exam due to extenuating circumstances (such as car wrecks, hospitalization, death in the family), you must contact me within 24 hours to arrange a make-up. If you do not contact me, you will receive a zero. Vacation plans are NOT extenuating circumstances!

Final Grades

Your final grade will be based 70% on lecture exams and 30% on lab. Grading criteria for the Laboratory portion of the class will be explained in the lab syllabus.

Final grades will be based on the following percent scale:


Course Total Percent




80 - 89


70 - 79


60 - 69


Below 60

Use the following formula to calculate your total percent:
(Average Lecture Percentage X 0.70) + (Average Lab Percentage X 0.30)

There is no extra credit. I don't give any, do not ask. Cheating and plagiarism will result in immediate dismissal from the course with the grade F.




The text chapters listed in the schedule correspond with that day's lecture.  The material should at least be skimmed before coming to lecture, such as reading the paragraph headings and looking at pictures and diagrams.  Detailed reading should be directed by the Study Guide. Only the material covered in the Study Guide will be included on exams.


If you have an older edition of the textbook, copies of the most current edition are on reserve at the Cabrillo Library. If you are unable to purchase the textbook immediately because you are waiting for financial aid, please come see me.


A Note from the Instructor

Function and Process

What is the difference between function and process? Learning to make this distinction is an important skill for you to acquire as you study physiology.

"We define physiology as the normal functioning of the body, but physiologists are careful to distinguish between function and mechanism. The function of a physiological system or event is the "why" of the system or event: why does a certain response help an animal survive in a particular situation? In other words, what is the adaptive significance of this event for this animal?

Thinking about a physioloigcal event in terms of its adaptive signifiance is the teleological approach to science. For example, the teleological answer to the question of why red blood cells transport oxygen is "because cells need oxygen and red blood cells bring it to them." This answer explains the reason blood cells transport oxygen but says nothing about how the cells transport oxygen.

In contrast, most physiologists study physiological processes, or mechanisms - the "how" of a system. The mechanistic approach to physiology examines process. The mechanistic answer to the question "Why do red blood cells transport oxygen?" is "Oxygen binds to hemoglobin molecules contained in the red blood cells ." This very concrete answer explains exactly how oxygen transport occurs but says nothing about the significance of oxygen transport to the animal.

Students often confuse these two approaches to thinking about physiology.... Staying aware of the two approaches will help prevent confusion. "

(modified from Human Physiology: An Integrated Approach, pg. 4 - 5. D. U. Silverthorn 7th ed

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