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NES2307 : Animal Function (Physiology and Development)

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Mark Booth
  • Lecturer: Dr Timothy Boswell, Dr Catriona Anderson
  • Owning School: Natural and Environmental Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System


The aim of the course is to promote knowledge and understanding of the normal physiological
functions, and processes that take place in animals during development and throughout life. The
module will also illustrate how different groups of animals have physiological features that support
their adaptation to different ecological niches. The module will take a comparative approach and
will cover different vertebrate and invertebrate groups. Practical classes associated with the
lectures will build experimental skills used in physiology.

Outline Of Syllabus

Lectures will introduce and explain animal physiology and development using a comparative approach. Topics such as the following will be covered:
- Neurobiology
- Muscle
- Respiration
- Circulation
- Ion and water balance
- Excretion
- Digestion
- Animal reproduction and development

2 x three-hour laboratory practical sessions will include experiments on insect tissues, on, for example:
- Muscles
- Sensory neurons
- Embryogenesis in insects

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion12:002:00formative quiz
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion241:0024:00Revision for summative essay
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion34:0012:00Revision for summative computer quiz
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture241:0024:00Lectures
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical33:009:00Practical classes
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading112:0012:00Guided reading given in lectures
Guided Independent StudySkills practice32:006:00Practical follow up homework
Guided Independent StudySkills practice33:009:00Preparation for practical classes
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery31:003:00Regular Q&A sessions (Online)
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study175:0075:00Study of lectures, ReCap, /University Online Resources etc.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study241:0024:00Lecture Follow Up
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Factual information, and the experimental evidence behind it, are delivered by means of lectures. Some of the fundamental concepts are reinforced by the practical exercises and associated private study exercises. The overview sessions provide the students with the opportunity for gaining further support with the material in the lectures and for preparation for the exam.

The practical classes provide the students with the skills that professional biologists employ, including:
- handling biological material,
- using apparatus to make measurements,
- numerical analysis of data.
- microscopic study

Private study is necessary for students to absorb information presented in lectures, to deepen their knowledge and understanding through reading supporting references, and to complete work on the practical materials.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Digital Examination9991A5024h take home online MCQ exam.
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1A50summative open book essay (1000 Words)
Formative Assessments

Formative Assessment is an assessment which develops your skills in being assessed, allows for you to receive feedback, and prepares you for being assessed. However, it does not count to your final mark.

Description Semester When Set Comment
Computer assessment1MPractice Quiz.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The computer assessment will test the breadth of understanding from the lecture course and the practicals. An
essay question will assess the ability of the students to apply and synthesise knowledge gained from the course
and to show depth of understanding of a particular area of knowledge. The formative quiz will provide the students with the opportunity to practice their knowledge and recall of the course material and introduce them to the format of the summative quiz.

Reading Lists