Factors Affecting Blood Pressure
and Heart Rate
Pamela Kay Runyan
Chester Nimitz Academy;
San Antonio, TX
Dr. Vernon S. Bishop and Dr. Jeremiah Herlihy
The University of Texas Health Center at San Antonio
Factors Affecting Blood Pressure and Heart Rate
To analyze the factors that may affect heart rate and blood pressure.
Students will be able to:
identify the difference between blood pressure and heart rate.
• explain the role of blood pressure and heart rate.
• understand the function of the baroreceptor on blood pressure and heart rate.
• sphygmomanometer and stethoscope
• clock or stopwatch
• student handout
Students should already be familiar with procedures for taking blood pressure and heart
rate, and should have a basic understanding of the cardiovascular system.
Students will be divided into groups of four. In these groups the students will need to
choose two people to measure heart rate and two people to measure blood pressure. The
heart rate people will then need to take their resting heart rate and record it. The blood
pressure people will need to take their resting heart rate and record it. Then as a group the
students will choose two factors that they believe will cause a change in heart rate and
blood pressure. They will test these factors and collect the data using time as an
independent variable. Graphs will then be made and analyzed. The groups will then
present and compare results.
Students should be reminded of laboratory safety rules when deciding what factors they
will be using to affect the heart rate and blood pressure.
Questions to Ask:
1. What kind of effects did you see in blood pressure and heart rate?
2. What are different factors that could affect blood pressure and heart rate? (e.g.
running, reading a scary book, and/or taking blood pressure and heart rate lying
3. Would ther