Introductory Human Physiology

This course provides an introduction to human physiology. The students learn to recognize and explain the basic concepts that govern each organ and organ system and their integration to maintain homeostasis, as well as some clinical aspects of failure of these systems. The organ systems covered include: nervous, muscle, cardiovascular, respiratory, endocrine, male and female reproductive, gastrointestinal, and urinary.

This human physiology course is targeted to individuals with an elementary background in biology. In a typical undergraduate setting, this course would fulfill requirements for students applying to professional health science programs such as medical school, nursing, physician assistant, pathologists’ assistant, physical therapy, and doctorate of physical therapy. In addition it is an ideal course in preparation for the medical college admissions test (MCAT).


  • The first Coursera on demand course to offer a Verified Certificate.
  • The subtitles of the lecture videos are translated into Portuguese, Spanish, Chinese, and other languages.
  • The first on demand standalone course to be translated into Chinese.
  • Instructors are studying and have published (in press) early findings of the relationship between student demographics and student performance in their MOOC.
  • Course materials are used as supplementary material for students enrolled in an on-campus Duke course.
  • Course materials will be used in learning modules for the new Master of Biomedical Sciences Program offered by the Duke School of Medicine in 2015.
  • Lecture notes are published as an ebook available at Amazon, iBook, Barnes & Noble and Lulu.


Jennifer Carbrey

Jennifer Carbrey

Emma Jakoi

Emma Jakoi


  • Cell Biology

Project Use:


Launch Date:

  • February 2013

View the project