Online Graduate Certificate in Anatomy & Physiology

Dec 09, 2019

Online graduate certificate programs in anatomy and physiology are designed for prospective health professionals and instructors. Described here are common entrance requirements and course descriptions for these programs.

Students who need to prepare for admission to nursing, physician assisting, or medical school as well as science instructors who are looking to advance their knowledge of body systems, structures, and functions could find an online graduate certificate program in anatomy and physiology a valuable asset. These programs consist of around 15-24 credits.

Common Courses in Anatomy & Physiology Graduate Certificate Programs

Students may find that graduate anatomy and physiology certificate programs cover all body systems in one or two courses rather than covering different body systems separately. Regardless of the structure of a program, common courses and topics that can be found at many colleges and universities are profiled below.

Anatomy and Physiology

Such courses may teach that the body is an interdependent system of organ structures and functions. The connections and relationships between body systems can be the focus of most instruction in this type of course. Students can also get an introduction to diagnostic imaging.


A histology course focuses on the microscopic details of human anatomy. The study of organ tissues and cells may be accompanied by different types of diagnostic images. Students might study normal versus pathologic tissue samples and even encounter some clinical exercises in histology. The connection between cells' functions and structures is also a concept that students study.

Anatomy and Physiology Lab

The study and dissection of preserved human remains should be an expected part of this course. Diagnostic images and anatomical models might also be used. Students are typically required to identify and describe various internal body parts using these resources.

Control Systems or Neurobiology

In this course, students might study the nervous and endocrine systems, often known as the control systems. However, some schools include a course focusing only on neurobiology. Students could study the structure and function of parts of the brain, ways humans learn, and the connections between the endocrine system and the brain. Although diseases of the control systems may be studied in a pathophysiology course, students might see a focus on diseases of the nervous and endocrine systems in this course as well.


Either as part of a larger physiology module or as a separate course, the assessment, identification, symptoms, and causes of diseases will likely be studied in a pathophysiology course. Students might also study topics such as disease progression and genetic research related to pathophysiology. Common treatment plans for different diseases could also be studied.

Admission Requirements

Admittance to a graduate certificate program in anatomy and physiology usually requires a bachelor's degree in addition to the completion of specific science courses, either as part of a bachelor's program or as graduate studies before admittance. A minimum GPA or GRE/MCAT score along with transcripts are usually required. Students might also need to acquire and submit letters of reference for admission to the program.

Online graduate certificate programs in anatomy and physiology include instruction in such topics as histology and pathophysiology. These programs can provide students with the anatomical and physiological knowledge required for admission to graduate programs in fields like medicine and nursing.

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