Human Physiology

Chairperson: David B. Thorp
Professors: C. Geithner, D. McCann
Associate Professors: B. Higginson, D. Thorp

The Department of Human Physiology offers courses that provide students with an opportunity for specialized work in and original investigation of human structure and function. The Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in Human Physiology provides an introduction to the physical and life sciences, followed by a concentrated study of human structure and function spanning the hierarchy of structure and function from molecules to the entire organism. Acute physiological responses and chronic adaptations to normal activity, exercise, disease and aging are emphasized. Laboratory experiences are used to introduce students to the methods of investigation, evaluation, and remediation of human structure and function. In concert with Gonzaga University’s Jesuit tradition and academic core, the program attempts to fulfill the University Mission in developing general knowledge and skills as well as specialized competence in a least one discipline: that of human physiology. The degree is unique within the University because it emphasizes the scientific basis and mechanisms of human function, adaptation, aging, health and disease, and performance. All majors must complete the University core (31 credits) the Human Physiology requirements (82 credits) and an additional 15 general elective credits for a total of 128 credits to graduate with the degree.

Courses recommended for Human Physiology majors pursuing career paths requiring graduate study: Because prerequisites for admission to different graduate programs vary, students are advised to obtain the specific prerequisites from programs and schools of interest as early in their academic career as possible.

Prerequisites: In all 100-level prerequisites for HPHY classes (specifically, BIOL 105; CHEM 101; MATH 112, 147, 148, or 157: PHYS 101; and HPHY 105), a minimum grade of C- is required. In all 200-level prerequisites for upper division HPHY classes (specifically, HPHY 205, 210, 241, and 242), a minimum grade of C is required.


B.S. Major in Human Physiology: 82 credits
Science Core: 31 credits
BIOL 105, BIOL 105L Information Flow in Biological Systems and Lab
4 credits
BIOL 170, BIOL 170L Introductory Microbiology and Lab 4 credits
CHEM 101, CHEM 101L General Chemistry and Lab 4 credits
CHEM 230, CHEM 230L Organic Chemistry and Lab 5 credits
MATH 112 or MATH 147 or MATH 148 or MATH 157 3 credits
PHYS 101 and PHYS 101L General Physics I and Lab 4 credits
PHYS 102 and PHYS 102L General Physics II and Lab 4 credits
PSYC 101 General Psychology 3 credits
Lower Division: 20 credits
HPHY 105 Introduction to Human Physiology 3 credits
HPHY 205 Experimental Research Design and Data Analysis 3 credits
HPHY 210 Scientific Writing 3 credits
HPHY 241 and HPHY 241L Human Anatomy and Physiology I and Lab 4 credits
HPHY 242 and HPHY 242L Human Anatomy and Physiology II and Lab 4 credits
HPHY 244 Nutrition and Metabolism 3 credits
Upper Division: 31 credits
HPHY 374 and HPHY 374L Human Kinesiology
4 credits
HPHY 376 and HPHY 376L Exercise Physiology 4 credits
HPHY 377 Environmental Physiology 2 credits
HPHY 377L Research in Physiology 2 credits
HPHY 401 and HPHY 401L Assessment of Health and Function 4 credits
HPHY 402 Clinical Exercise Physiology 3 credits
HPHY 475 and HPHY 475L Biomechanics 4 credits
HPHY 478 Physiology of Aging 3 credits
HPHY 499 Culminating Experience 1 credit
Electives (upper division HPHY courses) 4 credits