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Course Outlines

CARD 5301 Concepts in Electrophysiology

School School of Health Sciences
Program Cardiac Sciences - Electrophysiology Technology Option
Course Credits 3
Minimum Passing Grade 60%
Start Date January 04, 2021
End Date March 26, 2021
Total Hours 36
Total Weeks 12
Hours/Weeks 3
Delivery Type Other
Pre-requisites 60% in CARD 3330 and 60% in CARD 3360 and CARD 3252
CRN 48924

Acknowledgement of Territories

The British Columbia Institute of Technology acknowledges that our campuses are located on the unceded traditional territories of the Coast Salish Nations of Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-Waututh), and xwməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam).

Instructor Details

Name Emily Murtagh
E-mail Instructor to provide
Location Distance Instructor
Office Hours Instructor to provide

Course Description

This course is the first of three theoretical courses intended to introduce you to the field of Cardiac Electrophysiology. While this course is intended to stand alone as much as possible, it is expected that you should already have a good understanding of both electrocardiography (ECG), the components of a surface ECG (P, QRS, T), cardiac anatomy and physiology as well as pathophysiology and a relatively good understanding of various cardiac arrhythmias, such as heart block, atrial fibrillation, supraventricular tachycardia, and ventricular tachycardia. A cursory knowledge of cardiac pharmacology would also be an asset. This course will focus on the basics of the cardiac electrophysiology study. It is intended to give you the basic knowledge of what goes on in the EP lab. It is also intended to stimulate your appetite for a greater understanding of electrophysiology to prepare you for subsequent courses in EP. This course is designed to acquaint you with a basic understanding of the techniques used and electrograms obtained during an electrophysiology study. It includes the anatomy and physiology of the conduction system, 12 Lead ECG interpretation as it pertains to electrophysiology, electrophysiology of cardiac muscle, cardiac pharmacology, electrophysiology technology and the signals seen at a baseline EP study in sinus rhythm. We will also introduce you to the equipment we use in EP, the uniqueness of the conduction system, the intracardiac signals we see, the basic function of cardiac tissue and the affects that various medications have on cardiac tissue.

Course Learning Outcomes/Competencies

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Identify the anatomy and physiology of the conduction system of the heart and articulate how the autonomic nervous system affects it.
  • Explain the RABI approach to interpretation of 12 Lead ECGs, including axis and AV blocks. Further, correlate the basic EP intervals to the surface ECG.
  • Specify the cardiac action potentials including phases and refractory periods and the effect of the autonomic nervous system on them.
  • Describe the classifications of antiarrhythmic medications, their affects on action potentials and their use in various tachycardias.
  • Identify and differentiate the technology used in electrophysiology testing.
  • Articulate the catheters used in an EP study, their locations within the heart, the electrograms seen and the intervals measured.
  • Identify the diagnostic and therapeutic indications for electrophysiology testing
  • Identify the mechanism of arrhythmogenesis: automaticity, re-entry and triggered activity

Learning Resources


Cardiac Electrophysiology, A Visual Guide for Nurses, Techs and Fellows, by Paul D Purves et al, Cardiotext Publishing, ISBN 978-1-935395-49-2


1. Handbook of Electrophysiology by Francis D Murgatroyd et al, ReMedica Publishing, ISBN 1-901346-37-42.

2. Electrophysiology Testing by Richard N. Forgros, Fifth Edition, Blackwell Scientific Publications, ISBN 9780470674239

3. Cardiovascular Physiology Concepts by Klabunde, LIPP, ISBN 978-1-4511-1384-6

Evaluation Criteria

Criteria % Comments
5 Assignments 30 Passing grade = 60%
Midterm #1 ( Modules 1+2 ) 20
Midterm #2 ( Modules 1-5) 20
Final Exam ( Modules 1-6 ) 30

Course topics

Module 1 - Introduction to Cardiac Electrophysiology

Module 2 - The Conduction System, Anatomy and 12-Lead ECG: A Step Further

Module 3 - Cellular Electrophysiology and Arrhythmias

Module 4 - Cardiac Pharmacology

Module 5 - EP Technology

Module 6 - Introduction to EP Signals

BCIT Policy

Any student who needs special assistance in the event of a medical emergency or building evacuation (either because of a disability or for any other reason) should promptly inform their course instructor(s) and Accessibility Services of their personal circumstances.

Human Rights, Harassment and Discrimination:
The BCIT community is made up of individuals from every ability, background, experience and identity, each contributing uniquely to the richness and diversity of the BCIT community as a whole. In recognition of this, and the intrinsic value of our diversity, BCIT seeks to foster a climate of collaboration, understanding and mutual respect between all members of the community and ensure an inclusive accessible working and learning environment where everyone can succeed.

Respect, Diversity, and Inclusion is a supportive resource for both students and employees of BCIT, to foster a respectful learning and working environment. Any student who feels that they are experiencing discrimination or harassment (personal or human rights-related) can confidentially access this resource for advice and support. Please see Policy 7507 – Harassment and Discrimination and accompanying procedure.

Students should make themselves aware of additional Education, Administration, Safety and other BCIT policies listed at

Guidelines for School of Health Sciences

No school specific policies, please refer to main BCIT Policy.


I verify that the content of this course outline is current.
Emily Murtagh, Instructor
December 21, 2020

I verify that this course outline has been reviewed.
Cindy Mazerolle, Faculty
December 21, 2020

I verify that this course outline has been reviewed and complies with BCIT policy.
Treena Cardiff, Acting Associate Director
December 21, 2020

Note: Should changes be required to the content of this course outline, students will be given reasonable notice.