Physiology is the study of how the body works in health and disease. As such it is the foundational science underlying medical practice. Physiology involves an understanding of function at the molecular, genomic, cellular, organ and whole body level. Physiologists are dedicated to investigating fundamental mechanisms of body processes and translating this information into a useful framework to inform health-related decisions and improve clinical care.


Admission Information

  • Apply to the Life Sciences admission category on the St. George campus
  • Six Grade 12 U or M courses, including English and Calculus and Vectors are required
  • Senior high school credits in Biology and Chemistry are required for first-year courses
  • Senior high school Physics required for Biological Physics and recommended for Physiology
  • Students outside of Ontario should have the equivalent senior high school credits


Bachelor of Science Programs

  • Physiology (specialist, major and minor options)
  • Biological Physics (joint program with Physics)


First-Year Courses

The Department of Physiology does not offer any courses at the first-year level.


Advice for First Year

Students who are interested in studying physiology should take BIO 120H1 – Adaptation and Biodiversity and BIO 130H1 – Molecular and Cell Biology, CHM 135H1 – Chemistry: Physical Principles and CHM 136H1 – Introductory Organic Chemistry I, an introductory calculus course, and a physics course.



The development of air and space travel, and of the northern regions, an increased emphasis on exercise and fitness, and the advent of “artificial intelligence” based upon nervous system principles, all provide exciting problems and research opportunities for those trained in physiology. 

Students often continue their studies at the graduate level (MSc or PhD), a requirement for research and teaching at universities and colleges. 


Direct career options include:

Cardiovascular tech Medical laboratory technician
Geneticist assistant Personal trainer
Health care administrator Therapist assistant
Home care worker Physiologist
Lab assistant Research assistant
Practical nursing Science technical writer


Learn more about the Faculty of Arts & Science by reading our Viewbook


First Year