Stuck for ideas for what to do on Physiology Friday this year? Get some inspiration from our member case studies below!

Emma Lofthouse and Lisa JonesEmma Lofthouse and Lisa Jones, University of Southampton, UK

Here at the Institute of Developmental Sciences, we really enjoy public engagement so Lisa and I jumped at the chance to join in with Physiology Friday! All of our work is centred around the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease hypothesis which shows that the environment you’re exposed to in pregnancy can impact upon your long term health. To get the public involved, we tested their grip strength, reaction speeds and got them to play ‘The a-MAZE-ing placenta’, an interactive and educational game that demonstrates the complexities of pregnancy.


Mark Rae public engagement




Mark Rae, University College Cork, Ireland

I think Physiology Friday is a really valuable exercise for raising awareness of Physiology as a discipline within UCC, particularly for students who may never have even heard of, or considered pursuing Physiology as a degree course, before. It also provides our own Physiology 4th students with an opportunity to interact with people outside of the department and to show off their skills and knowledge as Physiologists-in-training to the public and the wider UCC community. I would like to thank The Physiological Society in particular for their moral and financial support of our Physiology Friday, without which it is unlikely that we would be able to run such an event.


Joe Quinn and Mary McGahon outreachJoe Quinn and Mary Mc Gahon, Queen’s University Belfast, UK

On Physiology Friday we approached secondary schools from areas that scored high on the Northern Ireland Multiple Deprivation Measure 2010, that don’t have significant representation at Queen’s University and where the promotion of Queens University is weak. Students were able to try out a number of activities from blood typing to looking at pigs organs and the thing I enjoyed most about the activity was how engaged these students were. Physiology Friday is fantastic as it allows us to tap into student populations and audiences that maybe aren’t aware of what Physiology is. The event was so successful we aim to do it again in 2018!



Michele Sweeney outreachMichele Sweeney, Newcastle University, UK

We held a public engagement event and took part in an A Level Biology Study Day, in the Great North Museum: Hancock.  We hosted a hands-on session centred on respiratory function.  Using our human torso model and model of diseased lungs, we explained the basic physiology of ventilation and the pathophysiology of some common lung diseases.  We made simple balloon lung models and used a pig model for some comparison between species.  Volunteers measured their peak expiratory flow rate using hand-held peak flow meters and comparing their values to predicted values.  We also showcased some of the physiology research taking place in Newcastle University including cardiovascular and gastrointestinal physiology, providing samples of seaweed bread aimed at reducing fat absorption.