Online Physiology Course and Class Descriptions

Individuals wishing to enroll in online physiology courses have a number of options available through colleges and universities. Online courses in physiology are typically offered as part of certificate and degree programs in several healthcare and science fields.

Online Physiology Courses

The course descriptions below provide a sample of some commonly offered online courses in physiology.

  • Human Physiology: Helping students understand the various functions of biological systems within the human body, this course introduces concepts relating to tissue, cells and organ systems. Anatomy is heavily emphasized, and individual class sessions often concentrate on specific parts of the body. Beginning human physiology teaches the mechanisms sustaining human life; students also learn about the effects of disease and viruses on human health. All work for this course is available online and can be completed at a pace suitable to students' needs.
  • Medical Physiology: Building upon the lessons found in a general human physiology course, medical physiology focuses on typical and atypical interactions within the body and how these impact human health. Students completing this online course may work on all assignments on their own schedule, but strict final deadlines are enforced. A virtual laboratory enhances medical physiology classes by allowing students to see simulated functions of the human body. Medical terminology may be introduced in this class.
  • Pathophysiology: Related to medicine and disease, pathophysiology studies the body's immune system and reactions to various diseases, allergens and infections. Advanced pathophysiology courses discuss toxic agents, cellular injuries and genetic disorders. Assignments often cover the ailments and issues impacting the renal, digestive and cardiovascular systems. Enrollment in a pathophysiology course generally requires students to have completed prerequisite classes in anatomy, physiology and chemistry.
  • Exercise Physiology: Concentrating on the effects of exercise on the human body, these online physiology courses analyze the aspects of human performance. Curriculum covers a range of health issues related to exercise and athletics, such as joint movement, oxygen transportation and muscle contraction. Students taking online exercise physiology courses also study the effects of strenuous effort on various organ systems, such as the heart and lungs.
  • Nursing Physiology: This course applies concepts of anatomy and physiology to the world of professional nursing. Students will focus on analyzing the systems of the human body in sickness and health, with special attention to interdependent organ systems.
  • Respiration Physiology: An online course in respiration physiology focuses on the pulmonary system and human diseases. The ways that molecular biology, genetics, and other fields intersect with cardiovascular physiology are taught in order to help students betterunderstand disease in the body.
  • Animal Physiology: Moving away from specifically human physiology subjects, this online course teaches students about the physiology of animals. Students can learn about how animals' bodies perform, including allocation of resources, cell locomotion, and the interaction between cell networks.

Program Information

Physiology is a branch of medicine studying the interactions and functions of biological systems within living organisms. Introductory courses in physiology, which are generally offered as part of undergraduate programs, instruct students on such fundamentals as health terminology and the purpose of biological systems. Basic online physiology courses focus on health and medical issues impacting the entire body.

Advanced physiology coursework may be found in graduate-level degree and certificate programs and typically concentrates on specific organ systems and parts of the human body. Online physiology courses at this level address each system's specific function, health issues, pathologies, diagnostics and disease prevention. Physiology classes can often be completed through online interfaces, which manage assignments and course material. A few online physiology courses may require students to take examinations at local testing sites under the supervision of an approved proctor.

Physiology courses are available through online learning at a number of colleges and universities and in many different subjects. The focus of courses may vary from animal physiology to exercise physiology, and these courses may be taken alone or as part of an undergraduate or graduate program.

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