Faculty of Science

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2013 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

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FacultyFaculty of Science
Organisational UnitGippsland School of Applied Sciences and Engineering
OfferedGippsland First semester 2013 (Day)
Gippsland First semester 2013 (Off-campus)
Coordinator(s)Dr Phillip Brook-Carter


In this unit students will explore the anatomy and physiology of the human reproductive system. The changes in structure and function of tissues and organs during embryonic and foetal development will be considered. Relevant pathological states will highlight key aspects of dysfunction. Principles of human inheritance will be studied, with an emphasis on inherited disorders and gene therapy. Finally, students will consider the factors that influence the distribution and maintenance of genes within human populations.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Explain the processes required for reproduction of individual cells and differentiate between meiotic and mitotic cell division;

  1. Explain the physiology of the male and female reproductive systems, relating it to the general anatomy of these systems, and explain how the endocrine system controls reproductive function in the male and the female;

  1. Describe the processes of gametogenesis, fertilization, implantation and embryogenesis;

  1. Describe how organs are formed from the primary germ layers;

  1. Describe the major stages of prenatal development - pre-embryonic, embryonic and foetal and the major events within these stages;

  1. Discuss the development of foetal circulatory and respiratory systems and describe the changes that take place in the natal and post-natal period;

  1. Explain the genetic basis of heritable disorders (sex-linked, autosomal dominant, autosomal recessive, spontaneous mutation) and the role of genetic markers in screening for genetic disease;

  1. Discuss the roles of gene flow, selection and genetic drift in establishing population characteristics.


One major assignment (3000 words): 20%
Case study: 10%
Examination (3 hours): 70%

Chief examiner(s)

Contact hours

36 hours of lectures and 24 hours of practical/tutorial classes per semester