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Thompson Rivers University
Thompson Rivers University

HLTH 2511: Introduction to Pharmacology

This course is designed to develop an understanding of the theoretical concepts surrounding pharmacology, such as the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of drugs, and the concepts surrounding pharmacotherapy. It gives specific information concerning cardiopulmonary, vascular, central and peripheral nervous system, and antimicrobial drug classifications, as well as common examples in each classification. With each classification of drugs covered, their mode of action, their clinical effects and side effects will be emphasized.

Learning outcomes

  • Describe and define the basic terms and concepts of pharmacology.
  • Describe the functions and structure of the autonomic nervous system (ANS), including the neurotransmitters and receptors, and the mode of action of the autonomic drugs.
  • Describe the neuromuscular junction and the agents used to block and restore normal skeletal muscle contraction.
  • Classify, identify the clinical purpose, describe the mode of action and describe the side effects of the drug classification of the following drug categories:
    • cardiovascular
    • renal
    • antithrombotic
    • central nervous system (CNS)
  • Outline the inflammatory and pain process and describe the agents used to treat these.
  • Describe the characteristics and implications of pancreatic hormones and antidiabetic drugs.
  • Describe the effects, uses, and indications for antimicrobials.
  • Describe the drugs used to treat disorders of the respiratory tract.

Course topics

  • Module A: Basic Principles of Pharmacology
  • Module B: Autonomic and Neuromuscular Pharmacology
  • Module C: Cardiovascular, Renal, and Hematologic Pharmacology
  • Module D: Drugs that Act in the CNS and PNS
  • Module E: Pharmacology for Inflammation and Pain
  • Module F: Endocrine Pharmacology
  • Module G: Chemotherapeutics
  • Module H: Pharmacology of the Respiratory System

Required text and materials

  1. Brenner, G. M.. Stevens, C. W., (2023) Brenner and Stevens' Pharmacology (6th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Saunders (Elsevier).
    Type: Textbook. ISBN: 9780323758987


Please be aware that should your course have a final exam, you are responsible for the fee to the online proctoring service, ProctorU, or to the in-person approved Testing Centre. Please contact with any questions about this.

To complete this course successfully, students must achieve a passing grade of at least 50% or higher on the overall course and 50% or higher on the mandatory Final Exam.

Students applying this course towards any TRU Health Care program are required to obtain a minimum of 60% overall to meet program requirements.

Assessment Weight
Midterm 1 25%
Midterm 2 25%
Mandatory Final Exam 50%



Open Learning Faculty Member Information

An Open Learning Faculty Member is available to assist students. Students will receive the necessary contact information at the start of the course.

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