Recent Advances in Endocrinology (16:340:612)

2 credits

Course Instructor: Team-taught by EAB faculty

Prerequisites and Other Registration Restrictions: Upper-level physiology or endocrinology course. Qualified senior undergraduates (minimum 90 credits and GPA of 3.0+) may register for the course with special permission of the instructor.

Objectives: (i) To present a review of metabolic endocrinology, focusing specifically on three selected hot topics; and (ii) to provide opportunities for critical-thinking and problem-solving exercises.

Description: The Fall 2014 offering of this course will focus on three important areas in endocrinology where major progress has recently taken place: thyroid hormones, vitamin D, and hormones produced by the GI system with emphasis on epigenetic mechanisms involved in production and action of these hormones. Students will learn basic and advanced concepts in endocrinology and metabolism, what can or cannot be considered a hormone, and how hormones link behavior to molecular processes. After finishing this course students will know how to apply this knowledge to humans and other animals. Students will also have the opportunity to develop problem-solving and critical-thinking skills. The major objective of the course is to provide students with an opportunity to gain long-lasting knowledge in a stress-free environment.

Format: Each week, during the first half of class, lectures will be given on a chosen topic. During the second half of class an interactive student discussion of a paper assigned the previous week will take place.

Grading: Three short (1-2 pages) take-home essay assignments will be given during the semester (~ 1 per month). The final exam will have a multiple-choice format and will be followed by a post-exam discussion. A midterm test will not be graded but reviewed in class to provide students with assessment of their progress. Final score will be letter-graded and based on the following:

  • Class participation (33%)
  • Essays (33%)
  • Final exam (34%)

Course Materials: Course materials will be provided in class. Students can also use outside sources to prepare for class.

Additional Information: Contact Dr. Wendie Cohick, Foran 108, PH: 848-932-6319, email