Homeostasis – An Analogy

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By successfully completing this assignment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and assessment criteria:

  • Competency 1: Describe the organization of the human body at increasingly complex levels.
    • Describe the stimulus, receptors, integrator, and effector and the tissue types involved in the body’s response.
  • Competency 2: Explain homeostasis as it relates to human biology.
    • Describe the homeostatic mechanism controlling body temperature, including physiologic responses.
    • Identify whether the homeostatic mechanism is a negative or positive feedback mechanism.
  • Competency 7: Communicate effectively in a variety of formats.
    • Describe a biological concept using scientific terminology.
    • Write coherently to support a central idea in appropriate format with correct grammar, usage, and mechanics, including correct APA format and citations.

Think about your home heating and cooling system. You most likely have a thermostat somewhere in the main part of your home or apartment. Inside the thermostat is a thermometer that measures the temperature of the air. If you have your house thermometer set at 78 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer, anytime the temperature in the room goes above 78 degrees, the thermostat registers the change and sends the electrical signal to your air conditioning system, which turns on and provides cool air to your home. As the inside air temperature decreases toward 78 degrees, the thermostat sends another signal to turn the cooling system off.

In much the same way, the body has homeostatic mechanisms for regulating its internal environment.

In this assignment, imagine you head outside to catch the bus on a Fall day. The weather is sunny so you do not bring a jacket. Suddenly clouds move in and the temperature quickly drops. You feel very cold. Based on this scenario, answer the following:

  • Describe in your own words the homeostatic mechanism that regulates body temperature.
  • Explain how your body will react to maintain body temperature.
  • Describe the stimulus, receptors, integrator, and effector and the tissue types involved in the body’s response.
  • Be sure to identify and describe at least two physiologic responses that will occur to help maintain a normal body temperature.
  • Identify whether the homeostatic mechanism is a negative or positive feedback mechanism.

Your paper should be between 250 and 500 words, unless otherwise specified by your instructor. Read the Homeostasis – An Analogy Scoring Guide prior to submitting the assignment to make sure you have met all of the expectations of this assignment.

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