Course syllabus for

Basic biology, 7.5 credits

Grundläggande biologi, 7.5 hp
This course syllabus is valid from autumn 2014.
Please note that the course syllabus is available in the following versions:
Course code
Course name
Basic biology
7.5 credits
Form of Education
Higher Education, study regulation 2007
Main field of study 
Not applicable 
GX - First cycle 
Grading scale
Fail (U), pass (G) or pass with distinction (VG)
Department of Clinical Neuroscience
Participating institutions
  • Department of Neuroscience
Decided by
Programnämnden för Psykologprogrammet
Decision date
Revised by
Programme Committee 8
Last revision
Course syllabus valid from
Autumn 2014

Specific entry requirements

Ma B, Sh A with at least the Pass grade/3.


Part 1
On completion of this part, the student should be able to:
1. describe at a general level how studies of evolution and behaviour of animals can
contribute to the knowledge of human psychology
2. describe at a general level human evolutionary history
3. describe at a general level the mechanisms of biological evolution (mutation and selection) and its results (adaptation)
4. describe at a general level the concept of behaviour and be able to explain relationships between inheritance, environment and an individual´s behaviour
5. describe at a general level the following concepts: cultural evolution, evolutionary psychology, behavioural ecology, and be able to list different opinions about the importance of our evolutionary history

Part 2
On completion of this part, the student should be able to:
1. describe the structure and function of the nervous system
2. describe the structure and function of the neuron
3. describe the structure and function of certain organ systems


The course consists of two parts.

Evolution and ethology, 2.5 hp Part 1 includes evolution ethology and animal psychology and how this can contribute to knowledge about human psychology Neurobiology and physiology, 5 hp In objective 1, the structure of the nervous system (central and peripheral nervous system) and the functional division (the motoric nervous system and the autonomic nervous system) and important neuroanatomical structures are included.
In objective 2, the specific structure of the neuron, description of the action potential and neurotransmission are included.
In objective 3, the heart and circulation, the gastrointestinal tract, the liver, the kidneys and the urinary tract, the respiratory system, endocrinology and the immune system are included.

Teaching methods

Part 1
Teaching consists of lectures that are followed up by seminars where contents from lectures are discussed.

Part 2
The main part of the teaching takes place in the form of lectures where the students are encouraged to take active participation. Included is a workshop in neuroanatomy where the students participate in demonstration of human brain tissue and a laboratory session where the students will dissect a lamb´s heart and inspect a human corpse. To the lectures, the students will obtain study questions that they can work independently with. There is also scheduled time when the students can discuss these questions with each another and with teachers.


Part 1:

1) Written examination

At the examination one of the grades Pass with distinction (VG), Pass (G), or Fail (U) is given.

Part 2:

1) Two oral tests that are distributed during the course
2) Written examination

The oral tests are graded Passed/Failed. At the written examination one of the grades Pass with distinction, Pass, or Failed is given. For the grade Pass with distinction on part 2 Pass with distinction in the written examination and Pass in both oral tests are required. To pass part 2 Pass in the examination and Pass in the two oral tests are required.

For Pass with distinction of the whole course, Pass with distinction in both parts is required. For the grade Pass in the whole course at least Pass in both parts is required.

Student who do not pass the regular examination are entitled to retake the examination on five more occasions. If the student has carried out six failed examinations/tests no additional examinations will be given. As examination trails, the occasion when the student has participated in the same test are counted. Submission of blank exam is counted as an examination trial. Examination to which the student registered but not participated in, will not be counted as an examination trial.

Transitional provisions

The transition rules follow KI's local guidelines for examination.

Other directives

Course evaluation takes place according to KI's local guidelines. Results and other measures are returned to the students on the course web.

Literature and other teaching aids

Kolb, B.; Whishaw, I. Q. Fundamentals of human neuropsychology
Maders Understanding Human Anatomy & Phy.
Fysiologi Lännergren, Jan; Westerblad, Håkan; Ulfendahl, Mats; Lundeberg, Thomas
Sand, olav; et al Människokroppen : Fysiologi och anatomi
Purves, Dale. Principles of cognitive neuroscience