cod. 12893

Academic year 2023/24
1° year of course - First semester
Professor responsible for the course unit
integrated course unit
8 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Course unit structured in the following modules:

Learning objectives

The Zoology course is part of the Integrated Course on Histology, Embryology and Zoology. The module aims at enabling the student to: 1: know and understand basic theoretical elements of biology, evolution and taxonomy and principles of eco-ethology; 2: knowledge and understanding applied in recognition of morphological and functional characteristics of invertebrate and vertebrate taxa of veterinary interest; 3: making judgements on scientific valence on modern evolution theories; 4: communication skills to illustrate the most striking features of animal taxa; 5: learning skills through the use of the textbook and discussion with the teacher.

Histology and General Veterinary Embryology
The module “Histology and General Veterinary Embryology “makes part of the course “Histology, Embryology and Zoology”. The module has the aim to teach the student to know and understand the notions of cytology, embryology and histology, with the purpose to gain solid basic knowledge necessary for the continuation of the educational process towards the profession of veterinary medicine.
Precisely the students need to be able to:
1. Know and understand the principles of cytology, embryology, and general histology. Be able to understand and use the appropriate scientific vocabulary. Be able to critically elaborate the acquired knowledge. (knowledge and understanding)
2. Be able to use the acquired knowledge to recognize with the optical microscope different tissues and understand the different levels of structural organization (subcellular / cellular/ tissutal); to understand the dynamics of development, starting from the gametogenesis to the formation of the three germ layers; to analyze different factors that influence the variation of the fetal circulation at birth; to understand the dynamics of the formation of the fetal membranes and placenta of veterinary species (applying knowledge and understanding)
3. The students at the end of the lessons need to demonstrate the comprehension of the different topics introduced during the lectures and plenaries, and the ability to correlate the different structural levels. In particular, they need to be able to integrate and handle the acquired knowledge in multidisciplinary areas (making judgments)
4. The students need to demonstrate the ability to communicate clearly the knowledge acquired using adequate language (communication skills)
5. The student needs to demonstrate the ability to correlate, integrate and handle the gained knowledge in multidisciplinary areas. Additionally, they need to demonstrate to have developed abilities that make them autonomous in the handling of their knowledge (learning skills)


Specific knowledge required by the admission test and when necessary, recovery of the educational debt in Biology. (O.F.A.)
Any debt (OFA) will be settled with a 2 hr class followed by an oral examination concerning the arguments explained.

Course unit content

The module of "Zoology" provides basic knowledge to the understand the complexity and diversity of the animal world and leads students through the evolutionary processes that characterize it. The first part concerns basic animal biology topics such as: origin and evolution of life on Earth, Evolution theory, microevolution, structures e functions in animals. The second part of the course is directed to the study of the systematic and evolution of the most important animal taxa from a veterinary point of view. In the third part of the course elements of ethology and animal’s domestication are presented.
The module of "Histology and General Veterinary Embriology" is divided into three parts. The first part of the course dedicated to the cytology, treats of the structure of eukaryotic cell. The second part gives notions of general embryology from gametogenesis to germ layers formation and regarding the species of veterinary interest, covers fetal membranes, placentation, fetal circulation and changes at birth will be treated.
In the third part, that is devoted to histology and includes theoretical and practical lectures the teacher provides knowledge on structural and functional characteristics of the various tissues and on the techniques and equipment necessary for the preparation of histological slides and their analysis.

Full programme

For the program refer to the individual courses and on the course website (Elly).
For consultation please refer to each cohort.


- CASIRAGHI et al. Zoologia. UTET Università 2018.
- VALSECCHI P. Attenti ai Cani. Edizioni il Mulino.
- VALSECCHI P. Non dire Gatto. Edizioni il Mulino.

Histology and General Veterinary Embryology:
Reference Text:
PELAGALLI G.V., e coll.: Embriologia, Morfogenesi e Anomalie dello Sviluppo, Idelson - Gnocchi, Napoli, 2009.
Other texts:
BARBIERI M., CARINCI P.: Embriologia, Ambrosiana, Milano.
BARONE R.: Anatomia Comparata dei Mammiferi Domestici, Vol 4, Edagricole, Bologna.
DE FELICI M., e coll.: Embriologia Umana - Morfogenesi – Processi molecolari - Aspetti Clinici, Piccin, Padova, 2009.
LATSHAW W. K.: Lo sviluppo degli Animali Domestici – Embriologia ad Orientamento Clinico, Ambrosiana, Milano.
NODEN DREW M., DE LAHUNTA A.: Embriologia degli Animali Domestici – Sviluppo normale e Malformazioni congenite, Edi-ermes, Milano.

-Cytology and Histology:
Reference Text:
ADAMO S., et al.: Istologia di Monesi, VII edizione, Piccin, Padova, 2018.
Other texts:
MESCHER A.L., et al.: JUNQUERIA Istologia - Testo Atlante, Piccin, Padova.
DELLMAN H.D., EURELL J.A.: Istologia e Anatomia Microscopica Veterinaria, Ed. Grasso, Bologna, 2005.
LIEBICH H.G.: Istologia e anatomia microscopica dei Mammiferi Domestici e degli Uccelli. Edizioni Piccin 2012.

Reference Text:
ROSS M. H., PAWLINA W., BARNASH T. A.: Atlante di Istologia e Anatomia
Microscopica, Ambrosiana, Milano, 2010.
Other atlases:
BACHA W.J., BACHA L.M.: Atlante a colori di Istologia Veterinaria, Edizioni Piccin, Padova, 2023.
FAMILIARI G., et al.: Anatomia microscopica - Atlante di microscopia ottica ed elettronica fondato da Pietro Motta, Piccin 2016.
YOUNG B., LOVE J.S., STEVENS A., HEATH J. W.: Wheater – Istologia e anatomia microscopica, Elsevier Masson, Milano.

Teaching methods

The topics are treated in order to highlight their correlations with aspects related to the profession of veterinary medicine.

The lectures take place illustrating general concepts that are detailed with examples of animal taxa of veterinary interest. The lectures are held using PowerPoint presentations that are made available to students on the ELLY site. Practical exercises include: video analysis of animal behavior and a visit to the Museum of Natural History in Milan.

Histology and General Veterinary Embryology:
The course includes theoretical and practical held in the in the halls of department. Considering the status of the health emergency the lectures could be done either in the classroom (“in presenza”) or in synchronous-streaming (“in telepresenza”) on the Teams platform.
The lectures are carried out through the use of histological slides/images, films, software of Microscopic Anatomy. The theoretical-practical activities follow the topics of the lectures in a way that the students firstly get to know the basic notions; the students are guided by working sheets given previously to them via the website of the course (password needed for the access).

In case of health emergency, the teaching could include lessons in mixed modality (frontal lessons for students in presence and simultaneously in live streaming on the electronic platform of the university).

Assessment methods and criteria

Written examination consisting of 14 multiple choice questions and 2 open questions to verify the capacity of the student to tackle problems of zoology using the methodological principles and knowledge acquired during the course.

Histology and General Veterinary Embryology:
The assessment of the achievement of the objectives set by the teaching involves a first test / question where the student must describe and recognize the tissues present in a histological preparation indicating their peculiar characteristics. This part of the examination may be carried out, at the discretion of the Exam Commission, on the basis of technical and health problems that may occur during the course, either under an optical microscope or through a video image.The exam continues with 3 questions, one for each part of the course (Cytology, Histology and General Embryology), randomly identified by the computer.The exam aims to evaluate whether the student has achieved the goal of knowledge and understanding of the content and the ability to apply the knowledge gained.The exam grade is associated with the overall assessment of the responses given by the student, weighted according to the load time of each part of the course; however, having regard to the mode of selection of questions, nowhere are permitted answers seriously insufficient (less than 4 of 10).

The final mark corresponds to the weighted average of the evaluations made during the single modules. The weight assigned is based on the number of hours designated for each module.

In case of health emergency, the exams will be conducted remotely, as follows:
remote oral questions, through the Teams platform (guide http://selma.unipr.it/).
Students with disabilities, SLD and BSE must first contact "Centro Accoglienza e Inclusione" (cai@unipr.it).

Other information

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