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Review: Introduction to the Nervous System

Here is what we have learned from this Introduction to the Nervous System:

  • The nervous system is the major controlling, regulatory, and communicating system in the body. It is the center of all mental activity including thought, learning, and memory.
  • The various activities of the nervous system can be grouped together as three general, overlapping functions: sensory, integrative, and motor.
  • Neurons are the nerve cells that transmit impulses. Supporting cells are neuroglia.
  • The three components of a neuron are a cell body or soma, one or more afferent processes called dendrites, and a single efferent process called an axon.
  • The central nervous system consists of the brain and spinal cord. Cranial nerves, spinal nerves, and ganglia make up the peripheral nervous system.
  • The afferent division of the peripheral nervous system carries impulses to the CNS; the efferent division carries impulses away from the CNS.
  • There are three layers of meninges around the brain and spinal cord. The outer layer is dura mater, the middle layer is arachnoid, and the innermost layer is pia mater.
  • The spinal cord functions as a conduction pathway and as a reflex center. Sensory impulses travel to the brain on ascending tracts in the cord. Motor impulses travel on descending tracts.

Quiz

Go to the quiz if you want to test yourself on the material you learned in this section. The quiz is a self-assessment tool and no records are kept. The feedback will let you know if you have answered the questions correctly. You can take the quiz as many times as you want.

Click here to take the quiz.