Anatomy and Physiology: 5N0749

An elective module of the Healthcare Support Certificate and a mandatory module of Nursing Studies Certificate. This module describes the structure and function of all of the systems of the body and their associated disease conditions,

Learning Outcomes

  • Differentiate between Anatomy and Physiology
  • Describe the structure and function of a typical animal cell and its organelles
  • Classify tissues into the four main groups; epithelial, connective, muscle and nervous tissue, identifying the different tissues within each classification
  • Differentiate between benign and malignant tumours
  • Outline the composition of bone, including the functions of the skeleton, the main bones of the appendicular and axial skeleton and the structure of a typical long bone
  • Identify the major categories and functions of joints, differentiating between the four types of synovial joints
  • Identify the main muscles of the body, differentiating between the three types of muscle and the interconnections between the skeletal and muscular systems in body movement
  • Outline the structure and function of blood and its role in maintaining immunity both active and passive
  • Describe the function of the heart including, the structure of arteries, veins and capillaries, the cardiac cycle and the flow of blood through the main blood vessels and blood pressure
  • Identify the component parts of the lymphatic system, its functions and its relationship with the blood system
  • Identify the parts of the digestive system, including its associated organs and their function, the parts of the stomach and the functions of each of the four layers of the alimentary canal
  • Outline the composition of protein, fats and carbohydrate and the process of absorption and the assimilation and metabolism of the breakdown products of digestion
  • Describe the structure and identify the parts of the respiratory system
  • Describe the role of muscles, blood and the nervous system in the breathing process
  • Explain the process of gas exchange in the alveoli
  • Describe the male and female reproductive systems including; the function of each reproductive organ and the role of hormones in the reproductive process
  • Explain the terms insemination, fertilisation and implantation and the development of the embryo in the first trimester
  • Explain the function of the main parts of the brain and how a nerve impulse travels along the nervous system
  • Differentiate between the Central, Peripheral and Autonomic Nervous Systems, explaining, how reflex action works
  • Differentiate between endocrine and exocrine glands
  • Explain the role of hormones in metabolic processes, including the effects of over secretion and or under secretion of insulin, thyroxine and growth hormone and the difference between a nervous system and a hormonal system
  • Explain the urinary system, outlining the gross and microscopic (nephron) structure and function of the kidney
  • Outline the structure of the skin, including its key parts, main functions and the relationship between the skin, the circulatory system and the nervous system
  • Reflect on the role of the human body and the interrelationship between the systems of the body


  • Examination Theory 40%
  • Assignment 60%


Successful completion of this component award enables the learner to transfer to programmes leading to other certificates where this component is an elective requirement.