Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam

Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam

  1. Students who have prior and comprehensive knowledge in BIOL 2304/2101 Human Anatomy or BIOL 2404 (Anatomy and Physiology) can take the Allied Health Science (ALHS) departmental Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam as an alternate entry of meeting the Anatomy & Physiology prerequisite for the Pharmacology course.
  2. The Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam will cover topics as specified by the common course objectives of BIOL 2304/2101 and BIOL 2404. The exam will only cover those topics needed for students to understand the concepts that will be covered in pharmacology (see “Objectives” below).
  3. A passing score on the exam will be 70%.
  4. If a student passes the Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam with a 70% or higher grade, the student is now eligible to take the HPRS 2300 Pharmacology course, provided the math prerequisite has been met as well. Passing the Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam does not constitute college credit for the BIOL 2304/2101 or BIOL 2404 courses. The student will have to take the Biology course.
  5. If a student has a passing score on the Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam, they need to provide documented proof from the department on the first class meeting or orientation date. No exceptions. The student is still required to go through the normal registration process.
  6. Other than administering the exam, the ALHS department is not involved in the registration process, does not keep waiting lists, and does not guarantee that a student who passes the exam will be able to register for a section of Pharmacology.
  7. Students who score below 70% on the Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam may a) register for the BIOL 2404 course or biology assessment exam for entry into the BIOL 2304/2101 course or b) use the self-study option to improve knowledge for the exam contents.
  8. Students will only be allowed to take the Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam once per semester for a max of only two times in one year.

The Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam is offered on a walk-in basis at the Eastview Campus Assessment Center, the Riverside Campus Assessment Center, and the Highland Campus Assessment Center.

The Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam is offered by appointment at the Round Rock Assessment Center. To make an appointment, please email James Merrifield at [email protected]. Remember to provide your name and ACCeID, and one of the supervisors will contact you with further instructions.

  1. The time allocated for each assessment exam will be two hours. This includes the time necessary for students to sign in, fill out envelopes for mailing test scores, and take the exam.
  2. Students who are late will not be allowed to take the assessment exam.
  3. All students must present a valid photo ID for admission to the assessment exam. Valid photo ID may be a driver’s license, Student ID, passport, Department of Public Safety ID, Department of Defense ID, or resident alien card.
  4. Students must present proof of their ID number for admission to the assessment exam. Valid proof of an ID number may be an ACC student ID card, a Social Security card, or an official fee receipt marked “Paid” by an ACC Cashier showing the ACC student ID number.
  5. Students should bring two No. 2 pencils to the exam.
  6. No cell phones or pagers will be allowed in the room, even if turned off. If a cell phone or pager goes off during the testing period, the student will be required to leave the room, and the student’s test will be taken and graded as-is. The student will not be allowed to continue the exam.
  7. Students may not wear a hat with a brim during the exam.
  8. Students cannot bring anything else into the room, other than a sweater or jacket, tissues, and medications. Students need to make separate arrangements for backpacks or purses. The proctors will assign a section of the room for personal items, but anything left in this area will not be monitored, and ACC will not be responsible for any damage or loss of your personal property. Water bottles are no longer permitted in the testing lab.
  9. Students will not be allowed to leave the room during the testing period for any reason. If a student leaves the room while the exam is in progress, the student’s test will be taken and graded as-is. The student will not be allowed to continue the exam.
  10. At the end of the exam, students must return all exams and answer sheets before leaving the room.
  11. The test will be proctored by ACC employees. If a proctor suspects cheating, the proctor will collect the exams and answer sheets of all individuals involved. These answer sheets will be assigned a grade of 0. Any student suspected of cheating must make separate arrangements with the ALHS Department for retesting.
  12. Exam questions will be multiple-choice, true-false, and matching questions. Some questions will require simple recall of information. Other questions will require application of knowledge.
  13. The proctors will not be able to answer any questions during the exam period. Students will not be allowed to use dictionaries or any other  supplemental materials during the assessment exam, including calculators.
  14. Students with disabilities should contact the Student Accessibility Services & Assistive Technology (SAS) to arrange for testing.
  15. Behavior that significantly interferes with or disrupts assessment testing may result in removal from the assessment exam facility. At the assessment exam facility, the proctors will be responsible for determining whether students will be asked to leave for disruptive behavior. Any student removed from an assessment test for disruptive behavior must make separate arrangements with the ALHS Department for retesting.
  16. Exams usually take between 1 to 2 hours to complete. The centers will not let you start the test unless you have time to finish, so plan accordingly.
  17. At the assessment center, each student will be given an form to fill out. The test score will be e-mailed within 3-4 business days.
  1. Compare the structure and function of different types of biomolecules:
    • lipids: fats (neutral fats or triglycerides), cholesterol (steroids)
    • nucleic acids: nucleotides, DNA, RNA
  2. Define:
    • enzyme
    • substrates
    • molecules-polar vs. nonpolar
    • atoms
    • electrolytes
    • solvents
    • solutions
    • solutes
  3. Discuss enzymes function on the human body.
  4. Describe the structure and function of the parts of eukaryotic cells: plasma membrane, cytoplasm, nucleus, mitochondria, ribosomes, endoplasmic reticulum (smooth and rough), Golgi apparatus, lysosomes, cytoskeleton (actin fibers, microtubules, intermediate fibers), centrioles, cilia, flagella
  5. Define and describe cellular processes:
    • Homeostasis-role of feedback mechanisms in maintaining homeostasis
    • Transport mechanisms-diffusion, osmosis (including the concept of tonicity, the effects of isotonic, hypotonic and hypertonic solutions on cell volume), facilitated diffusion, active transport (solute pumps, endocytosis, exocytosis)
  6. Describe the phases and general events of the cell cycle: G1, S, G2, M (note the M phase includes mitosis and cytokinesis)
  7. Describe the levels of organization in multicellular organisms (chemical, cellular, tissue, organ, organ system, organism).
  8. Describe the overall functions of these systems: circulatory (blood and cardiovascular), digestive, nervous, endocrine, reproductive, integumentary, skeletal, respiratory, muscular, urinary, and immune (lymphatic).
  9. Define hierarchy of organization and relationship between levels: atoms, molecules, cells, tissues, organs, organ system, organism.
  10. Define and be able to use the terms of body orientation and position:
    • superior/inferior
    • anterior/posterior
    • medial/lateral
    • dorsal/ventral
    • proximal/distal
    • superficial/deep
    • candal
  11. Define common chemical symbols: O, C, H, N, Ca, K, Na, Cl
  12. Define pH, acidic, basic, neutral
  13. Define resting membrane potential and Na+ and K+ association.
  14. Explain the difference between sudoriferous glands: apocrine and eccrine
  15. Explain the function of  types of muscle tissue (skeletal, cardiac, smooth) upon stimulation.
  16. Define the neuromuscular junction and its association with skeletal muscles.
  17. Discuss actin, myosin, and sarcomere function with the anatomy of skeletal muscle fibers.
  18. Discuss the organization of the nervous system.
  19. Define function or a neuron, gap function, and synapse.
  20. Define neurotransmitter.
  21. Identify neurotransmitters.
  22. Discuss what neurotransmitter is released pre- and pat-synaptically from each nerve fiber in the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems.
  23. Discuss an action potential.
  24. Discuss a myocardial action potential.
  25. Define the function of each cranial nerve.
  26. Identify the number of cranial and spinal nerves.
  27. Explain the differences between sensory, motor, and mixed nerves.
  28. Discuss motor output: somatic vs. autonomic structures-structure, effector organs, afferent and efferent nerves.
  29. Discuss the divisions of ANS: Compare and contrast the structure and functions of the sympathetic nervous system
  30. Compare and contrast the structure and functions of the parasympathetic nervous system.
  31. Explain the effects of each division of the ANS on major organs (heart, blood vessels, stomach, eye, and urinary bladder).
  32. Define anatomy and function of the neuroglial cells, gray and white matter, and the meninges.
  33. Identify the location, basic structure, hormones produced and general function of the hormones secreted by each gland:
    • hypothalamus
    • pituitary gland
    • thyroid gland
    • parathyroid glands
    • adrenal gland (by general classes)
    • pancreatic islets
  34. Discuss the anatomical and functional relationship of the the hypothalamus and the anterior pituitary.
  35. Discuss the anatomical and functional relationship of hypothalamus and posterior pituitary.
  36. Define function of ADH and aldosterone in relationship with the nephron.
  37. Discuss the role of tropic hormones in controlling other endocrine glands.
  38. Discuss the flow of air through the respiratory system.
  39. Define erythrocytes, leukocytes and platelets (including granulocytes and agranulocytes).
  40. Discuss functions of erythrocytes, leukocytes, and platelets.
  41. Define the different types of immunity and give examples.
  42. Discuss the pathway of blood flow through the heart.
  43. Define the anatomy and function of the heart.
  44. Discuss the pacemaker of the heart and how this relates to the heart conduction system.
  45. Explain the myocardial action potential and how this relates to cardiac contraction.
  46. Explain the conduction system.
  47. Review the EKG, and each of its deflections.
  48. Review cardiac cycle and heart sounds of the heart.
  49. Define cardiac output, stroke volume and heart rate.
  50. Explain the relationship between cardiac output, stroke volume and heart rate.
  51. Explain Starling’s Law of the Heart.
  52. Discuss the histology of blood vessels.
  53. Describe the vasomotor control and differential distributions of blood flow.
  54. Discuss pulmonary circulation and how it relates to major arteries and veins.
  55. Discuss systemic circulation: major arteries and veins; circle of Willis, hepatic portal system (emphasis upon the function of the hepatic portal system)
  56. Define and identify these structures:
    • atria-right and left
    • ventricles-right and left
    • heart wall: epicardium, myocardium, endocardium
    • interventricular septum
    • apex
  57. Discuss the lymphatic vessels and concept of lymphatic drainage area.
  58. Define lymph nodes and other lymphoid organs: structure, function (tonsils, spleen, lymph node, thymus gland), and location.
  59. Discuss veins and arteries with oxygen and deoxygenated blood.
  60. Discuss function of coronary arteries.
  61. Discuss the relationship of pulmonary capillaries and alveoli.
  62. Describe the GI tract: structure and functions of organs and accessory organs.
  63. Review the digestive processes and where food absorption mainly occurs.
  64. Describe the function of digestive enzymes.
  65. Describe preload, afterload, cardial output, and stroke volume.
  66. Describe the parts of the nephron and the sequence of the structure.
  67. Review the overview of urine production: filtration, reabsorption, secretion.
  68. Discuss the negative feedback mechanism associated with hormones.
  69. Define purpose of renin-angiotensin mechanism and role of ACE.
  70. Discuss overview of hormonal regulation of male reproduction.
  71. Discuss overview of ovarian and uterine cycle including hormonal regulation.

This is a list of simple and inexpensive resources to help students study independently for the Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam. These books can be found at a local bookstore or on the Web.

Please be aware that each book contains material that is not covered on the Pre-Pharmacology Assessment Exam. The assessment exam for Anatomy and Physiology courses will only cover the material listed in the objectives for the exam.

  • Marieb, E. N., & Hoehn, K. (2019). Human anatomy & physiology. Hoboken, NJ: Pearson Education.
  • Saladin, K. S. (2015). Anatomy and physiology: The unity of form and function. New York: McGraw-Hill.
  • Saladin, K. S., & Saladin, K. S. (2012). Student study guide to accompany Anatomy & physiology: The unity of form and function / prepared by. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.

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