BMS129 Physiological Sciences 1 (8)

This subject provides a foundation study of the human body using an integrated systems approach. The primary focus of this subject will be on the physiological processes underlying the function of each body system. After an introduction to anatomical terminology and cell biology, the emphasis of the subject is on the physiology of the nervous, endocrine, skeletal and muscular systems.

Subject Outlines
Current CSU students can view Subject Outlines for recent sessions. Please note that Subject Outlines and assessment tasks are updated each session.


* Offering has a residential school. Please view following information for further details.

Session 1 (30)
On Campus
Orange Campus
Wagga Wagga Campus
Online *
Wagga Wagga Campus
Term 2 (15)
Online *
Orange Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: BMS129. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Biomedical Sciences

Incompatible Subjects

BMS123, BMS127, BMS128, BMS191, BMS192

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to communicate anatomical and physiological concepts using discipline specific terminology and illustrations;
  • be able to identify and explain the principal structures, features, functions, and location of the nervous, endocrine, cutaneous, skeletal, and muscular sytems; and
  • be able to apply anatomical and physiological concepts to explain how they support the normal functioning of the body.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Introductory concepts: terminology; homeostasis; key biological molecules
  • Cell structure and function, membrane dynamics and cellular communication
  • Basic histology: tissue types, locations and functions
  • Nervous system: organisation and functional divisions; neuron structure, neuron physiology; synapses; neuromuscular function; functional anatomy of CNS with an emphasis of neural integration; receptors and processing of afferent information, special senses; autonomic nervous system and neural control systems
  • Endocrine system: mechanisms of hormone action, control of hormone secretion; major endocrine glands and the regulation and effects of their hormones
  • Skeletal system: bone tissue; physiology of bone growth and development; principal structures of the axial and appendicular skeleton; articulations
  • Muscular system: gross anatomy, muscle tissue, physiology of skeletal and smooth contraction

Residential School

This subject contains a 4 day Compulsory Residential School.

Conduct all practical class activities, tutorials and mid-session exam. In particular, students will:

  • Carry out microscopic examinations and develop their understanding of histology
  • Carry out some dissections
  • Examine 3 dimensional models of anatomy
  • Carry out osmosis practicals
  • Complete hands on activities to support their understanding of reflexes, sensory adaptation and muscle action

Special Resources

Travel to and accommodation is required for distance education students attending the compulsory residential school at a CSU campus.

Students will need to cover the cost of travel to campus and accommodation on campus. 

All students are required to have a lab coat, safety glasses and covered footwear for lab based practicals.


Current Students

For any enquiries about subject selection or course structure please contact Student Central or or phone on 1800 275 278.

Prospective Students

For further information about Charles Sturt University, or this course offering, please contact info.csu on 1800 275 278 (free call within Australia) or enquire online.

The information contained in the 2018 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: August 2018. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.