Queen's University
CRSS 454 Cardiovascular Sciences

Course Offering TBD

CRSS 454, Cardiovascular Sciences, will cover the study of the physiology, pharmacology, and anatomy of the cardiovascular system. Topics include integrative mechanisms and pharmacotherapy involved in short-term and long-term control of the circulation in health and disease.

Minimum 4th year (Level 4) standing and registration in a LISC Major or Specialization Plan, or Bachelor of Health Sciences program, and a GPA of 2.50, or permission from the instructor.

After completing CRSS 454, students will be able to:

  1. Develop a question, hypothesis, and study design based on an understanding of a gap in knowledge in the field to be able to present a solution that resolves at least an aspect of a gap in knowledge.
  2. Assess the breadth, depth, and context of the research in a scientific paper to collaborate in explaining how the material integrates into a conceptual framework of operation of the cardiovascular system.
  3. Based on their ability to synthesize and articulate the components of the conceptual framework that regulates the cardiovascular system, use a novel experimental dataset to provide an explanation, both in presentation and written form, the mechanistic basis of the time course of changes during transitions, at steady-state, as well as being able to anticipate the associated consequences.
  1. Communicator
  2. Advocate
  3. Leader
  4. Scholar
  5. Professional
  6. Collaborator

All assessments will be graded using marking rubrics.

Assessment 1 – Living Lab Research Project (20%)

Working in groups of 4 to 7, students will be required to conduct an approved, group designed and self-directed experiment, assessing outcomes such as heart rate and blood pressure and the relationship to experimental interventions and/or manipulations. The aim of this assignment is to define a specific research hypothesis and associated objectives, and to concisely, but clearly, explain their results as well as rationalize their choice of experiment in relation to gaps in knowledge. Students will present their findings by preparing a recorded presentation for viewing by the rest of the class (max. 15 minutes), the TAs and the instructor.

Assessment 2 – Group Presentation and Discussion (15%)

Working in small groups, students are expected to read an original paper and present its findings to the rest of the tutorial group, emphasizing how the data attained in each study fits into the conceptual framework being developed in the course. As part of this assessment, during a group’s presentation, another group is assigned to be the “discussants” of the tutorial, responsible for leading and managing the discussion following a presentation, including coordinating the flow and consolidation of questions.

Assessment 2.1 – Peer assessment of contribution to group work (5%)

Assessment 3 – Midterm Exam Group Presentation (20%)

Students will work in small groups to critically assess the results of a hypothetical short term experiment (2 to 5 days). Using knowledge gained in the course, students will have to discuss the time course of changes of various control systems and tissue responses that occur between the onset of a perturbation and the “steady-state” in response to a scenario based on changes in blood pressure data.  Students will present their findings detailing the mechanistic basis for the time course of changes and the associated consequences by preparing a recorded presentation  (max. 15 minutes) for viewing by the rest of the class the TAs and the instructor.

Assessment 4 – Final Exam (40%)

Once again, students will use information learned throughout the course to discuss the time course of changes of various control systems and tissue responses that occur between the onset of a perturbation and the “steady-state” in response to a longer duration and more detailed scenario. Students will be expected to demonstrate their comprehensive grasp of the course material in less than a 1500 word written response.

Synchronous discussions allowing for question and answer periods with both the Instructors and TAs will be available to the students throughout the course.

9–10 hours a week (108–120 hours per term).

Required Texts

  • CRSS 454 course notes via modules posted online

Optional Text

  • Guyton and Hall Textbook of Medical Physiology, 13th Edition

Dr. Michael Adams

Meet Dr. Michael Adams