Human Cellular Physiology (Ad): Research (PHSI3906)


This unit of study complements, and should be taken together with PHSI3905. PHSI3906 focuses deeply upon certain areas of cellular physiology that have particular relevance to human health and disease. In the problem-based learning (PBL) sessions groups of students work together with the support of a tutor to develop and communicate an understanding of mechanism underlying the physiology and patho-physiology of disorders such as prostate cancer and neuromuscular disorders. Each problem runs over three weeks with two small group meetings per week. Reading lists are structured to help address written biomedical problems. Lectures provide advice on how to interpret scientific data of the type found in the research papers. Advanced students will take an extended practical class program. The additional practical problem will emphasize experimental design and interpretation in cell culture studies. Collectively, the PBL, lectures and practical classes aim to begin to develop skills and outlook needed to deal with newly emerging biomedical science. Please see the Physiology website for details of mentored Advanced research topics.

Our courses that offer this unit of study

Further unit of study information


Two small group PBL and one 1-hour lecture per week; one 3-hour practical in some weeks.


One 1.5-hour exam (56%), PBL assessments by oral presentations and paper summaries (14%), advanced practical class assessment tasks (30%).


Alberts, B. Molecular Biology of the Cell. 5th edition. Garland Science.

Faculty/department permission required?


Unit of study rules


[An average mark of 75 in (PHSI2005 or PHSI2905) and (PHSI2006 or PHSI2906)] OR [an average mark of 75 in (BMED2401 and BMED2402 and an additional 6 credit points of BMED240X)]

Assumed knowledge

6 credit points of MBLG


PHSI3006 or PHSI3004 or PHSI3904 or PHSI3010 or PHSI3910  



Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.