Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2012 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
OfferedClayton First semester 2012 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Sarah Jansen & A/Prof Peter Temple-Smith


All aspects of human pregnancy from implantation to the puerperium. Unit taught by both basic and clinical scientists, thereby affording the student an appreciation of the close integration between the disciplines. The module will be taught in four sections: implantation and placentation, the foetus, the mother and politics of pregnancy.


On completion of this unit students will have:

  1. gained an overview and an understanding of the pathophysiology of human pregnancy in terms of both the mother and her foetus. Students will understand the processes regulating implantation and placental development and function, goetal growth and development, neonatal adaptation, maternal adaptation to pregnancy and puerperal changes and the regulation of parturition;
  2. become familiar with common aberrations in normal physiology and development including foetal abnormality and prenatal diagnosis, recurrent miscarriage, pregnancy hypertension, preterm labour, puerperal disorders and neonatal care;
  3. become aware of some of the key unanswered questions in perinatal research and gain an understanding of the research strategies capable of affording new developments;
  4. acquired an understanding of the theory and practice of the laboratory techniques of dispersed cell culture and immunohistochemistry.


Open-book written examination (1.5 hours): 50%
Literature review (3000 words): 25%
Written project report in the form of a scientific paper: 15%
one oral presentation of the practical project: 10%.

Chief examiner(s)

Associate Professor Peter Temple-Smith

Contact hours

This unit will be held over 3 weeks in first semester. Students are required to attend all lectures, tutorials and journal review sessions. In addition attendance is required from 9 am to 5 pm for a one week practical laboratory project.