Pathophysiology and Human Disease

I.     Course Prefix/Number: BIO 242

       Course Name: Pathophysiology and Human Disease

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

BIO 232

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course analyzes and compares human diseases by studying pathophysiology, histopathology, pathogenesis and diseases as they impact cellular metabolism. Course content integrates pathophysiology with more common clinical aspects of disease. Course is intended primarily for health career students.

IV.   Learning Objectives

After successfully completing this course, the student should be able to:

    1. Define and distinguish among the concepts of homeostasis, allostasis, stress and adaption and their relationships to the pathogenesis of diseases.
    2. Describe and differentiate cellular responses to injury and ischemia and explain how these responses can result in necrosis and apotosis.
    3. Summarize the fundamentals of gene regulation, genetic mutations and the influence of mutations on pathogenesis of diseases.
    4. Compare and contrast the etiologies, genetic expression, biologic behavior and clinical evaluation of neoplastic diseases.
    5. Describe and differentiate the fundamentals of inflammation, infection, immune responses and autoimmunity and how these processes influence and / or contribute to diseases.
    6. Define and distinguish the relationships of blood flow, O2 and CO2 transport and hemostasis to the pathophysiology and development of diseases.
    7. Analyze the regulation, functions and pathophysiologic processes that involve the cardiovascular and pulmonary systems and their impact on disease expression.
    8. Evaluate normal, altered functions and disorders of the urinary system including its endocrine function, regulation of body fluids, electrolytes and acid / base balance.
    9. Differentiate between the most common pathophysiologic and disease processes involving the gastrointestinal and biliary systems, the liver and pancreas.
    10. Summarize the pathogenesis of common diseases of the endocrine organs and the influence of these diseases on the functions of other organ systems.
    11. Describe and differentiate the pathophysiologic and clinical features of acute and chronic diseases of the musculoskeletal and neurological systems.
    12. Indentify and differentiate relevant and significant symptoms and signs of diverse pathophysiologic and disease processes.
    13. Recognize and formulate relevant questions in the identification and evaluation of pathophysiologic processes and problem recognition (e.g., cause and effect).
    14. Synthesize information, utilizing critical thinking and clinical reasoning skills, to accurately identify and evaluate individual disease processes.
    15. Assess the diverse manifestations of disease as presented in individual patients to derive hypotheses, interpretations and conclusions and to employ skills in clinical reasoning through discussions, assignments and CASE studies.
    16. Explain how selected medical therapies have a basis in both the treatment of pathophysiology and correction and control of homeostatic mechanisms.

Learning Outcomes

By the completion of your biology courses at Oakton, you will have gained the experience to.....

  1. Think critically – identify, define, analyze, interpret, and evaluate ideas, concepts, information, problems, solutions, and consequences. This includes the ability to compute and comprehend quantitative information and to engage in the scientific process.
  2. Communicate – communicate ideas, concepts, and information through written and oral means. Collaborate with people of diverse backgrounds and abilities.
  3. Demonstrate literacy – demonstrate the ability to read critically within content areas. Use technology to locate, evaluate, and communicate data, information, ideas, and concepts. Assess, critique, and select from a variety of information resources.
  4. Demonstrate responsibility – demonstrate an understanding of personal responsibility and ethical behavior in one’s own academic and civic life.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. Introduction
  2. Altered Cellular and Tissue Biology
    1. Inflammation
    2. Hypersensitivities
    3. Immunodeficiencies
  3. Alterations in Hematologic Function
  4. Tumor Spread and Treatment
  5. Alterations of Neurologic Function
  6. Alterations of Hormonal regulation
  7. Stress and Disease
  8. Alterations of Cardiovascular Function
  9. Alterations in Pulmonary Function
  10. Alterations of the Reproduction System
  11. Alteration of Renal and Urinary Tract Function
  12. Alterations of Digestive tract Function
  13. Alterations of Musculoskeletal Function

VII.  Methods of Instruction

Lectures will consist of 2 separate lecture sessions each week. Classroom format will include lecture, discussions, and problem solving exercises. Students will be expected to read and study the text and any additional assigned reading.

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

Students are responsible for all material given or assigned during the lecture.  Careful note taking during sessions and adhering closely to the assigned reading schedule is strongly recommended. It is essential to read and study the text in this course.  If you miss a class it is your responsibility to get lecture material from a colleague and to obtain any handouts from the instructor. Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

Copstead, C. & Lee, E. (2013). Pathophysiology (5th Edition). Saunders-Elsevier.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

May vary depending on instructor, but can include:

  • Objective lecture exams
  • Written assignments
  • Class attendance and participation

XI.   Other Course Information

Additional course information may vary but may include:

  • information concerning group and/or individual reviews scheduled during class time or outside of class time
  • information concerning biology tutors
  • suggestions for success in class (i.e. careful note-taking by students)
  • use of study sheets to aid in preparation for lecture or laboratory exams

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.