Welcome to HS 320: Communicable & Non-Communicable Diseases

We are excited to have you here and hope you enjoy your time as you expand and apply new knowledge.

Course Description

This is an introductory course exploring human disease. The course will be taught using the same model used in medical schools and physician assistant training. A heavy emphasis will be placed on the description, etiology, signs and symptoms, diagnostic procedures, treatment, prognosis, and prevention of major diseases of each body system. The class will prepare you to apply appropriate knowledge in a variety of healthcare fields or future medical training.

Note: Since this course explores diseases of the human body, some lessons will include content related to sexual performance and/or genitalia. Thank you for reviewing and discussing these topics respectfully and professionally. Any lesson which contains such content will have an “IMPORTANT” notice at the beginning of the Lesson Overview document so that if there are children near when you are studying, you will be able to take proper precautions.

Course Outcomes

By successfully completing this course you will be able to:

Learning Model Architecture


As you complete preparation activities, you will prime your mind to learn and to teach others. In this course, you will prepare to learn and teach by reading the Weekly Introduction, Announcements, Introductory Cases, and the Foundation material. These documents will create the correct paradigm for the that week. You will then be ready to study the assigned textbook section located on the Readings document.

Teach One Another

Teaching your classmates gives you, a prepared student, the opportunity to act for yourself and to develop a deeper understanding of the course materials. Along with teaching your classmates in formal arenas such as the Ask the Expert discussion board, you will also teach one another during regular group study sessions.

During the semester, you are required to post at least twice to the Ask the Expert board with each post being made during different weeks . Posting must be completed before the last day of classes, e.g. the Wednesday of the last week. At least one post must be a sincere question related to a condition from that week's lesson, an attempt to answer another student's question or a discussion of the case studies. At least one post must be a current event or topic of interest that relates to that lesson's topic(s); include a link or citation from a reputable source of medical information (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute of Health, American Heart Association, World Health Organization, etc.), not just a news article or WebMD. Peer-reviewed journal articles are best.


You will extend and help solidify your learning by pondering and proving new knowledge and by showing evidence that you understand and can differentiate between various diseases. One means of doing this is through real-world application in the case study activities during each week. You will also ponder and prove your learning through completion of tests throughout the semester.



Course Materials

Compare prices for your textbooks through the University Store Price Comparison site. They will show you all of the options from the University Store plus several online options to help you find the best price.

Diseases of the Human Body. Tamparo, C., and Lewis, M. Sixth edition. You may use either the physical book or the e-book for this course. The ISBN of the physical book is 978-0803644519 and the ISBN of the e-book is 978-0803644519.

Technology Requirements

You must have a webcam and microphone for this course. A webcam and microphone is helpful when participating in your instructor's office hours and working in your study group.

You may communicate by phone; however, it will be more cost-effective to use a webcam and a free video chat technology such as Zoom, Skype, Google Hangouts, or other video chat service of your choice.

Mozilla Firefox is the recommended Internet browser for any I-Learn course. Videos, readings, and course functionality will work best when you use Firefox.

It is assumed that you either have your own computer or you have regular, consistent access to a computer. You need to have the appropriate permissions on your computer to download lesson content, access websites, and update and/or download software as needed along with consistent, reliable access to an Internet connection.

How to Navigate this Course

Begin studying the material early in the week so you have enough time to complete your study of the Introduction, Announcements, Introductory Cases, Foundation, and Readings by midweek. The first two pages you should read during each week are the Introduction and the Announcements. Read these to quickly learn important information about the week. Next, focus on developing your critical evaluation skills as you consider each of the Introductory Cases. Take notes as you watch the disease videos on the Foundation document and as you complete the readings from your textbook. As questions arise, post them to the Ask the Expert Discussion Board so your instructor (an expert) can answer your questions. You may also offer an answer to a classmate’s question. This discussion board is available by selecting the Discussions tool in the course navigation toolbar so you can continue to ask and answer questions and communicate with your instructor and classmates regarding the diseases you are studying throughout the semester.

During the second half of each week, the material focuses on applying your new knowledge. Complete the Concluding Cases and Tests (every other lesson) by the end of the week. The Concluding Cases contain different case studies than the Introductory Cases activity. Meet with your study group (or partner) and work through each of the Concluding Cases. Remember, the Ask the Expert discussion board will be open all semester through the last day of classes so that you can continue to discuss your disease questions with your instructor and classmates.

Note: Each week opens prior to the week it is assigned. If you complete the current lesson early and would like to get started on next week’s lesson, you may do so.


Every other week contains an exam. It is imperative that you study the materials each week thoroughly: Take notes and review your notes. It is also highly recommended that you follow the suggestions on the document in order to do well on the tests. The overwhelming majority of your grade, about 90% of it, is determined by your test scores. Again, study the material each week thoroughly and follow the suggestions in the document to ensure you are prepared for each test.

The final exam is not comprehensive.

Study Groups

One of the key aspects of success in this course is to study the material with your classmates. During the Introduction Week, you will introduce yourself to your classmates and begin selecting your study group members. Your group will choose how and when to meet. It is suggested that you meet 2–3 times per week to discuss the case studies and help each other study the diseases.

Case Studies

Each week contains multiple case studies. The case studies will not only help you to extend your learning and apply your knowledge of the diseases, but will also help you develop the key skill of critically evaluating a health situation. It is important to learn to ask the right questions and determine which information is crucial in order to reach a correct diagnosis.

Before you study the diseases presented in a week, complete the Introductory Cases activity to help you focus on critical evaluation of each case study and prepare to learn about new diseases. After studying the Readings, you will complete additional case studies in the Concluding Cases activity. Discuss the case studies with your study group and review them on your own to ensure that you understand each disease. The correct answers or diagnoses to the case studies will not be provided in the course. You and your group will be able to determine the correct resolution for the case studies after learning about the diseases contained in each lesson. If you still have questions about a case study after learning about the diseases and discussing your questions with your group, ask your instructor for help by posting your question to the Ask the Expert discussion board contained in each lesson.


About 10% of your semester grade will be earned by completing the assignments in the Introduction Week and participating in the discussion board throughout the semester. About 90% of your semester grade will be earned from test scores.

The grading scale used for this course is as follows:

Percentage Range Letter Grade
100% – 93% A
92.99% – 90% A-
89.99% – 87% B+
86.99% – 83% B
82.99% – 80% B-
79.99% – 77% C+
76.99% – 73% C
72.99% – 70% C-
69.99% – 67% D+
66.99% – 63% D
62.99% – 60% D-
59.99% – 00% F

Late Work

You are preparing for a career as a health professional. Submitting work after the deadline has passed is not a professional practice; therefore, late work will not be accepted in this course.


HS 320 is a 3 credit course and BYU-Idaho recommends scheduling 3–4 hours per week for each credit. Therefore, the course was designed for an average student to spend 9–12 hours each week to successfully complete the course work. Please arrange your schedule and reserve ample time for your studies. It is also expected that you will complete your work in a timely manner and put forth your best effort.

You can expect that your instructor will respond to your email within 24 hours, excluding Sundays and holidays. You can also expect that your instructor will grade your submitted work within 7 calendar days of the assignment due date. If you ever have a question about your grade or would like additional feedback, simply contact your instructor for assistance.


Netiquette is Internet etiquette, or acceptable social behavior when using the Internet. Remember, there is a real person on the other side of your computer screen. You should always treat others courteously. Behavior such as calling someone a derogatory name, making threats, or being demanding is always inappropriate. Treat your classmates and your instructor in a respectful and professional manner just as you would if you were seeing them face to face. This counsel applies to any type of communication including discussion board posts, emails, participating in a video conference, or any other method of communication.

Netiquette guidelines also include the following:

By using common courtesy and showing respect to your classmates and instructors as you practice the netiquette behavior explained above, you will be a better disciple of the Savior and have a far better online learning experience as you help establish a safe learning environment for everyone.

Additional Information

Honor Code

Following the Honor Code is of great importance as you strive to be a disciple of Christ. Academic honesty and integrity is expected of all BYU-I students. To copy another’s work from the Internet, a book, or any other source and claim it as your own work is plagiarism. Read the official definitions of plagiarism and cheating from the Academic Honesty portion of the Honor Code. Each case of plagiarism or cheating will be dealt with by the instructor. When working on a group project, you have the responsibility to assure that others in the group do not plagiarize. Any academic dishonesty issue will be referred to the BYU-I Dean of Students, if necessary. Even though you are taking this course online, BYU-Idaho’s Dress and Grooming standards still apply. By adhering to the Honor Code you will create a learning environment “consistent with the ideals and principles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.” (Honor Code webpage)


Course specific tutoring options for online students taking HS 320 are available through the Academic Support Centers (look for the “For all other tutoring” section). Visit their webpage for more information.

ADA Statement

In compliance with applicable disability law, qualified students with a disability may be entitled to “reasonable accommodation.” It is the student’s responsibility to disclose to the instructor any special need he or she may have by the end of the first week of the semester. Transcripts of videos used in the course can be found in the Video Transcripts document in the Course folder.

University Policies

Read the document which includes Student Honor, Students with Disabilities, Sexual Harassment, and Complaints and Grievances.


This syllabus and the course schedule may be changed at any time prior to or during the semester as the need arises based upon circumstances. Any changes will be available to view on the course documents.