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Q. 45. Explain the origin and describe the courses of the great surface

currents of the Atlantic Ocean. The "courses” of the various currents were usually correctly described, but their "origin" was not well understood. Convection was often referred to, but usually there was no mention of the action of prevailing winds. Q. 46. What are the chief materials brought up from the deepest portions

of the ocean by dredging operations? Although the word deepest is emphasised in the question by means of italics, a large proportion of the candidates ignored it, and described all deep-water deposits, including globigerina ooze. The manganese nodules &c., were referred to by a considerable number, but almost complete ignorance was shown of the existence of scattered boulders, volcanic materials, zeolite crystals, and meteorite débris. Q. 47. What are Isobars ? What observations are required in order to

draw them? What deductions can be drawn from their study ? This question was generally well answered. Some candidates neglected any reference to the need of correction in the barometric readings for altitude and temperature. The weakest portions of the answers, however, were the attempts to explain how a study of the Isobars enables meteorologists to deduce conclusions conce

cerning wind force and direction, and, in some cases, of the character of the weather in the immediate future. Q. 48. State what you know concerning the nature of, and the forms

assumed by, the deposits which accumulate round geysers. In some schools there seems to have been no teaching on this subject, and even the siliceous nature of geyser deposits was unknown. In other schools a fair general knowledge of the nature of the deposit was exhibited, but very little was known of the cones, basins, or terraces formed around geyser vents. Comparatively few candidates selected this question. Q. 49. Describe the motion of Venus round the sun as observed from

the earth. What is known about the period of rotation of this

planet ? The answers to this question were almost always very incomplete. The portion about which most knowledge was shown was the apparent movement of Venus in the heavens. With regard to the “rotation period, those candidates who did not confound rotation with revolution evidently gave mere guesses on the subject. Q. 50. What is the physical cause of the precession of the equinoxes ?

Describe an experiment to illustrate precession. Very diverse results were seen in the case of different schools. In some the phenomena and causes of precession had evidently been well explained and illustrated by means of spinning tops or gyroscopes.

But in other cases the poverty of the answers indicated that there had been very little exact teaching given. Q. 51. Describe fully the system adopted for classifying stars according

to their brightness. In only one or two cases were good and full answers given to this question, and we must conclude that in most schools there has been no teaching, worth the name, on the subject. As a rule, there was no reference whatever to exact numerical estimates adopted by astronomers, or to the photometric methods which render such systems of classification possible. Q. 52. Describe the chief different forins assumed by nebulæ. What is

known about their general distribution in the heavens ? While a general fair knowledge of the character of nebulæ, especially the spiral, annular, and irregular forms, was shown, and the fact of their abundance in the region of the Milky Way was usually stated, there was much less exact knowledge of the subject shown than could be wished. The statement of the varieties of type was far from exhaustive-all reference to planetary nebulæ being usually omitted--and of the distinction in the character and distribution of the gaseous and non-gaseous nebulæ nothing seems to be known. Very few candidates, however, selected this question.



XIV. Human Physiology

XV. General Biology
XVI. Zoology
XVII. Botany
XXV. Hygiene

Professor L. C. Miall, F.R.S., Chairman.
Professor J. B. Farmer, D.Sc., M.A., F.R.S.,

Professor F. Gotch, M.A., F.R.S.
Col. J. L. Notter, M.A., M.D.

Report on the Examinations in Human Physiology.


The work in the first and second stages of the Evening Examination for 1906 shows a distinct improvement over that of previous years. This is evidenced by the intelligent character of the answers of a considerable number of the candidates, by the increased extent to which candidates realise the bearing of the examination questions, and above all by the small number of those totally inadequate answers which have in previous years been but too common. This improvement may, it is hoped, be considered as showing a corresponding improvement in the efficiency of the teaching and is an indication that teachers have realised the value of supplementing their work by such simple demonstrations as are set forth in the printed syllabus. A further satisfactory feature of the written work of candidates in these stages is the general improvement in writing and in spelling, the defects to which attention was drawn in the report for 1905 being much less conspicuous. As the total number of candidates in the first and second stages was slightly larger than in 1905, it seems improbable that the favourable result is due to the dropping out of the lowest class candidates, and it thus affords grounds for believing that the teaching has become more efficient. If this belief is substantiated it is a very satisfactory feature of the whole work.

Stage 1.

Results : 1st Class, 337 ; 2nd Class, 482 ; Failed, 225 ; Total, 1044. The number of candidates who attained the standard necessary for firstclass amounted to 32 per cent. as compared with 29 per cent. in 1905, but only 22 per cent. of the candidates failed, whereas 27 per cent. failed in 1905. There are still many instances of incapacity to answer questions which involve the description of some simple structure or physiological process, and examples of this in reference to Questions 1, 3, 4, 6, and 7 will Le found in the appended remarks. Q. 1. What gives the blood its red colour ? Explain the importance of

the colouring material. Does the colour ever change, and, if so,

under what circumstances ? This question was answered by nearly all candidates. The colour of a dilute solution of defibrinated blood should be demonstrated, as also its change by taking away the oxygen through any so-called reducing agent, ammonium sulphide, etc. The change of colour is not brought about by CO, but by loss of some oxygen.

Q. 2. Draw a diagram representing the general distribution of the vessels

through which the blood circulates. Describe the general

structure of the finest branches of this circulatory system. The drawings which illustrated many answers to this question were not satisfactory. A familiar mistake in many instances was the character of the wall of the capillary vessels, which are formed by a single layer of flat cells in no way resembling mucous membrane cells. Q. 3. What chemical elements are present in albumin, gelatine, starch,

fat and sugar ? Give an example of the occurrence of each of these in familiar articles of food. What happens if you heat

albumin and sugar respectively so as to char them ? The question was well answered except as regards the final part. It was evident that some groups of candidates had observed what happens if albumin and sugar are heated so as to burn them, whilst others had never been shown this simple way of distinguishing between a nitrogenous compound and a carbohydrate. Q. 4. What is the average rate of breathing per minute. Give the general

composition of the atmosphere and of the expired air respectively.

How would you show the peculiar characters of the latter ? This question was taken by nearly all candidates and was generally well answered. The composition of the atmosphere and expired air was often given to two places of decimals, which is absurd, and as regards expired air of no value. Such gross mistakes as the inclusion of hydrogen among the atinospheric gases were occasionally made, but were rarer than in previous years. Q. 5. Describe the general structure, position, and chief functions of (a)

the parotid glands, (b) the pancreas, (c) the liver. The answers do not call for any special comment, being generally satisfactory. Q. 6. What groups of bones are present in the palm of the hand and the

digits ? Explain how it is possible for the hand to turn round,

and for the thumb to meet each of the finger tips. The groups of bones were generally given correctly, but the explanation of the movements allowed by the articulations was inadequate in almost all

It was not realised that the first carpo-metacarpal articulation is a saddle joint allowing movements round two axes. Q. 7. What is the temperature of the body as determined (a) by the

Fahrenheit thermometer, (6) by the Centigrade thermometer.
How does it come about that this temperature remains steady

whether we are living in summer heat or in winter cold ? There is still an uncertainty as to the two thermometric scales. Since in the case of the body temperature the first scale is used (clinical thermometers) whilst in physiology the second (Centigrade) scale is always referred to, the comparison between the two must be actually demonstrated by teachers. Q. 8. Describe the position, general structure and functions of the

diaphragm, illustrating your answer by appropriate drawings. The weak point in most of these answers was the nature of the diagrammatic drawings. Weak candidates still describe the diaphragm as a muscular structure which by contracting moves the ribs and thus causes inspiration. However, the majority of answers were much more intelligent than in previous years. Q. 9. What nervous structures are concerned in reflex actions ? Give

two examples of such actions. This question was satisfactorily answered by very few of the candidate Simple reflexes which occur in the body should be actually demonstrated; there are a number of respiratory ones, coughing, sneezing, etc., also several in the eye, pupillary contraction to light, blinking, etc.


Q. 10. Make a drawing to show the general position of the various

structures contained in the eyeball. What is the blind spot,

and why is it blind ? The drawing was in most cases correctly given as regards the chief details. In connection with the reason why the blind spot is blind there seemed to be evidence of want of intelligent thought.


Results : 1st Class, 169; 2nd Class, 559; Failed, 151.; Total, 879. The work was a considerable improvement on that of previous years, the percentage of those obtaining the standard of first class was higher, being 19 per cent. as compared with 13 per cent. in 1905, whilst only 17 per cent. of the candidates failed to reach the pass standard ; in 1905 there were 32 per cent. of failures. The inaccuracies to which attention was drawn in the report for 1905 were much less conspicuous, and although there was still evidence of inequality in different batches of papers,

the poor batches were not so inadequate as in previous years. The answers were distinctly more intelligent as a whole, and this appears to indicate that the teaching has improved as regards efficiency. Q. 21. Classify from the point of view of their action the various sub

stances in the digestive secretions which alter the constituents of the food, and indicate the organs which are concerned in

their production ? The point of view indicated by the term “classify” was not taken by the great majority of those who attempted this question. No classification into sugar - forming, fat - splitting and proteolytic enzymes was made, although many facts were correctly given. Q. 22. What is understood by the expression " arterial blood pressure" ?

In what respects does the blood pressure differ in the various parts of the vascular system? Explain what liappens to the

arterial blood pressure when the spinal cord is divided. There is still considerable confusion between the pressure distribution in a system and the varieties of flow of liquid in such a system. By means of a water supply and some elastic tubing the main features of pressure and flow can be demonstrated. Q. 23. Describe the minute structure of an intestinal villus: What are

the nature and course of the channels by which the absorbed constituents of the digested food reach the general systemic

circulation ? This question was answered very well by some candidates, and fairly by most of those who attempted it. The weakest feature was the description of the villus. Q. 24. Describe the situation and structure of the lungs. What is

artificial respiration, and how would you employ it the case of

an apparently drowned person ? Fairly well answered by most candidates, and, ils regards the second part, quite intelligently by the great majority. Q. 25. By what organs are substances excreted from the body? Briefly

explain any alteration in the different excretions resulting from

(a) muscular exertion, (6) absence of food, (c) warm surroundings. The alterations in the different excretions under the various conditions indicated in the latter part of this question were not satisfactorily explained. The question demanded intelligent appreciation of the general principles of metabolism.

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Q. 26. Of what substances is a bone composed ? Describe with the aid

of appropriate drawings the general and microscopic structure

of a long bone, such as the femur. The answers were on the whole satisfactory, and the drawings were in most cases appropriate and good, The least satisfactory feature of the majority of answers was that concerned with the composition of bone. Q. 27. Enumerate the cranial nerves, stating in general terms the

functions of each. State briefly the part of the central nervous

system to which each is attached. Those who attempted this question answered it fairly well, and in some instances excellently. Q. 28. Give a short description of the situation, general structure and

functions of (a) the crystalline lens, () the olfactory mucous

membrane, (c) the circumvallate papillæ. As a whole this question was poorly done, although there were a few very good answers. The functions of the crystalline lens were in many cases wrongly described, and there is still the tendency among, weaker candidates to use the two expressions, “refraction and “reflection” indiscriminately.



Results : 1st Class, 10; 2nd Class, 21 ; Failed, 27 ; Total, 58. There were 58 candidates in this Stage, as compared with 42 in 1905. The work of the best candidates showed distinct improvement, and the percentage of failures was slightly smaller than in the previous year. The Stage demands from candidates practical acquaintance with microscopic work (see Question 41), and some knowledge of the simpler operations used in physiological chemistry (see Question 42), The new syllabus for next year will increase these requirements, and, by limiting the candidates to those who have already taken Stage 2, will prevent this Stage being attempted by those who are quite unqualified to enter upon it. Q. 41. Identify and describe with appropriate drawings the structural

features of each of the two specimens A and B provided for

microscopic examination. The specimens were first a section through the cardiac end of the stomach, which, being doubly stained, showed more distinctly the two types of gland cells, and secondly, a section through the spinal cord, so stained as to show very beautifully the nerve cells with their contained granules. The stomach section was poorly described, and in the great majority of cases was not identified. The cord section, although identified, was adequately described by only a few of the candidates. Q. 42. By what method can dextrose be detected in a solution ? In

what respects does dextrose differ from lactose and maltose ? Where is dextrose found in the body, and what is its physio

logical importance ! This question was not well answered by any candidate. It would thus appear that the simple methods used in physiological chemistry for the examination of carbohydrates had not been practised by candidates. Attention is drawn to the terms of the new syllabus for 1906, as regards this. Q. 43. Describe the peculiarities of the circulation in the mammalian

fætus, illustrating your answer by diagrams. Oply attempted by a few candidates, whose answers were either quite good or very poor. The subject is one of very considerable importance, but is apt to be omitted by teachers, and, although given in most text books of even an elementary kind, is apt to be passed over by students as unnecessary.

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