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Biology (BIOL) 310

Biology of Human Sexuality (Revision 2)

BIOL 310

Revision 2 is closed for registrations, replaced by current version

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Science

Prerequisite: BIOL 235 or BIOL 230, or any 3-credit, second-year human biology course.

Faculty: Faculty of Science & Technology

Biology Studies home page

BIOL 310 is not available for challenge.

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Defining human sexuality is not an easy task. Often misunderstood, human sexuality does not merely comprise the physical behaviour of sexual intercourse; the predominant behaviour likely to come to mind at the mention of “sex.” While important, sexual intercourse is only one component of a much larger and complex web called “human sexuality.” Given the complexity and range of human sexual behaviour, Biology 310 offers students multiple perspectives in order to understand sexuality.


Unit 1: What is Human Sexuality?

Unit 2: Anatomy and Physiology: The Male Body

Unit 3: Anatomy and Physiology: The Female Body

Unit 4: Sexual Response Cycle

Unit 5: Gender

Unit 6: Attraction and Love

Unit 7: Sexual Techniques and Behaviours

Unit 8: Sexual Dysfunction

Unit 9: Pregnancy and Childbirth

Unit 10: Contraception and Abortion

Unit 11: Sexuality in Childhood and Adolescents

Unit 12: Sexuality in Adulthood and in the Later Years

Unit 13: Sexuality and Disability 

Unit 14: Sexually Transmitted Infections


To receive credit for BIOL 310, you must also achieve a course composite grade of at least fifty percent “D” (50 per cent), and a minimum passing grade of fifty percent (50 per cent) on each assignment and the final examination. The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Assignment 1 Assignment 2 Midterm Exam Final Exam Total
15% 15% 20% 50% 100%

The mid-term and final examinations for this course must be taken online with an AU-approved exam invigilator at an approved invigilation centre. It is your responsibility to ensure your chosen invigilation centre can accommodate online exams. For a list of invigilators who can accommodate online exams, visit the Exam Invigilation Network.

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Spencer A. Rathus, Jeffrey S. Nevid, Lois Fichner-Rathus, Edward S. Herold, Alexander McKay (2013). Human Sexuality in a World of Diversity. (4th Canadian edition) Custom edition for Athabasca University. Pearson Education.

The textbook also includes access to online resources at

Other Materials

All AU course materials are available online.

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 2, April 09, 2013.

View previous syllabus


Last updated by SAS  07/07/2014 16:42:09