What is it?
Study of living organisms. Physiologists are experts in determining
mechanism of diseases at a molecular level. For example, the hormone
calcitonin, an important hormone for bone metabolism, was discovered by
Dr. Harold Copp, a renowned physiologist. Physiologists work in private
or academic research centers or laboratories.
Undergraduate programs are usually four years long. The first two years
are general science courses. Students apply to the program at the end of
the second year. Most programs are Honors programs very similar to other
Honors Programs such as Pharmacology. MSc and PhD degrees are also
and Canadian Universities.
Physiology is a useful pre-med degree as many of the courses taught in
Medical School especially the Physiology module are covered in the
Physiology Undergraduate Program. Physiology also provides a good
learning experience for those interested in basic science experience in
research for those.
Many with an undergraduate degree in Physiology plan to apply to Medical
School. Roughly around 50% are accepted the first time around.
Physiology is more demanding than other science degrees. Many of the
Physiology programs offered by North American Universities are Honors
degrees and require more advanced science courses (Chemistry, Physics,
Math) as prerequisites.
Career and Academic
Career opportunities are limited at the level of undergraduate
physiology training. Graduate degrees such as a PhD may create
opportunities in academia and possibly the industry. The
American Physiological Society is
a great resource that provides information on careers in Physiology.