Office of Undergraduate Instruction

01:146:356 Systems Physiology

This course is intended for Life Science majors or those with a strong background in the Biological Sciences.

This course may be used to fulfill the elective requirements of the Biological Sciences major


Spring, Fall, Summer




General Biology 119:115-116 or 119:101-102 AND General Chemistry with lab 160:161-162 or 163-164, and 160:171.
Open to Juniors and Seniors only. College of Pharmacy students may take this course in their Sophomore year. ALL other students must be Juniors or Seniors (no exceptions).

Course Description

Physiology according to American Physiological Society is the study of life, and how genes, cells, tissues, and organisms function. Physiologists are occupied with research on key physiological concepts of body systems function. The investigation of living systems at many levels includes molecular processes, cell function, and behavior of isolated tissues, organ systems and the whole organism. The physiologists work is not limited to cell and tissue culture and animal experiments but includes research in human subjects.

Physiological studies of normal function provide the basis to understanding abnormal function that occurs in pathological states. Physiologists are always trying to understand the functional body responses to a variety of internal and external environmental challenges.

In this context the systems physiology course is designed to provide students with an understanding of the function and regulation of organ systems and integration of all systems in the human body. In addition, the importance of mechanisms of communication and control/ regulation to integrate all organ systems to maintain the homeostasis will be emphasized.

Course content will include principles of homeostasis, cell physiology, body composition, neural & hormonal control mechanisms, skeletal muscle physiology, cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive and metabolism, renal and endocrine systems. The integrative body responses to exercise and to the effects of physical training will be presented along with their value as diagnostic tools in medicine.

Course URL

On Sakai Rutgers portal and it will be available on the first day of classes.

Learning Goals

The goal of this course is to develop the student's knowledge and understanding of the organ systems and human body physiology. Students should be able to identify the operational physiological mechanisms of the majority of the body systems and their specific function. It is also expected that the students understand the unique role of each organ and organ systems in maintaining homeostasis. They should also be able to distinguish between important physiologic concepts such as the steady state, dynamic equilibrium and homeostasis. It is expected that they understand the synchrony of many systems interacting simultaneously ( e.g. neural control of cardio-respiratory response to maintain the heart rate and blood pressure)

The students should be able to compare, contrast and integrate knowledge of the major organ- function and their complexity of the major body-systems.

Exams, Assignments, and Grading Policy

There will be two hourly mid-term exams, plus a comprehensive final exam that will be administered during finals week. The points earned for exams #1 and #2 will each be worth approximately 30% of a student's grade (60% combined), with the final exam worth 40% of the course grade.

Course Materials

A selection of good books to study physiology for this course:


Sherwood, Lauralee. Human Physiology: From Cells to Systems, 9th edition, Brooks/Cole, Cengage Learning, 2016. ISBN-13: 9781285866932, ISBN-10:1285866932.

Silverthorn, Dee Unglaub. Human Physiology: An Integrated Approach with Mastering A&P with eText, 7th edition, Pearson/Benjamin Cummins, 2016, ISBN-13: 9780321970336, ISBN-10: 0321970330.

Students are expected to have a copy of one of these books and to refer to it as a resource for clarification and reinforcement of material relevant to the learning objectives in this course. All listed books will be held on reserve in Rutgers Library. Some of these books should be available at the Rutgers University Bookstores

Course Closed?

If this course is closed and if you have completed all of the prerequisites, please use the following link to add your name to the appropriate wait list: Wait List Sign Up for Fall 2017 Courses.  Please note, this list applies only if you have completed all prerequisite courses. Systems Physiology is a popular course and attains strong enrollments; consequently no possibility for issuing special permissions.  If you have any questions, please contact the Division of Life Science - Office of Undergraduate Instruction at 848-445-2075 or visit our office at Nelson Labs B112, Busch Campus.


Dr. Roseli Golfetti
Nelson Labs B124
Busch Campus
Phone: 848- 445-8242
email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Contact Us

Nelson Biological Laboratories

Nelson Biological Laboratories
604 Allison Rd
Piscataway, NJ 08854

p. (848) 445-2075
f.  (732) 445-5870