Cerebellum: Parts and functions of the cerebellum

len Alfred Ajibola - Thu, 06th February, 2020 @ 2:28 PM

Topics in Biology

Characteristics of saltwater habitat Aquatic habitat explained with its types Types of habitat: Terrestrial habitat explained with examples What is habitat? Difference between plant cell and animal cell Nucleus explained with its structures Nucleus explained with its types and functions Organelles of the cell explained with their characteristics Eukaryotic cell explained with its characteristics Prokaryotic cell explained with its structure Characteristics of prokaryotic cell Concept of cell Cell theory in biology Importance and limitations of ecological pyramid Protists explained with their characteristics Contents of the scrotum: Epididymis, vas deferens, spermatic cord and cremaster muscle Tropical savanna explained with its characteristics Concept of ecological pyramid Hindbrain: Medulla Oblongata and its features Food web explained with examples

Academic Questions in Biology

Please click here to see all Questions and Answers

Male Reproductive System - Len Academy

From the above diagram, which of the organ below isn't a requirement for the male reproductive system?

  • A. Bladder

  • B. Ureter

  • C. Glans Penis

  • D. Testis

  • E. Bulbourethral Gland

  • F. Epididymis

A walnut shaped male accessory sex organ located between the bladder and penis is the _____.

  • A. Ductus Ejaculatorii

  • B. Bulbourethral Gland

  • C. Prostate Gland

  • D. Ductus Deferens

  • E. Seminal Vesicles

  • F. Epididymis

In a food chain, the primary consumers are classified under trophic level  _____.

  • A. Zero

  • B. One

  • C. Two

  • D. Three

  • E. Four

  • F. Five

Cold blooded animals are referred to as _____.

  • A. Homeotherms

  • B. Endotherms

  • C. Poilokitherms

  • D. Ectotherms

  • E. Thermotherms

  • F. None of the above

All reptiles are vertebrates.

  • A. True

  • B. False

_____ cells are responsible for the formation of osteoblasts.

  • A. Osteocytes
  • B. Chondrocytes
  • C. Chondroblasts
  • D. Osteoclasts
  • E. Osteoprogenitor cells
  • F. Osteoblastic

_____ is a bone that constitute the axial skeleton.

  • A. Clavicle
  • B. Scapula
  • C. Patella
  • D. Radius
  • E. Sternum
  • F. Femur

Which of the following is false concerning cartilages and bones?

  • A. Cartilage does not have a direct blood supply while bones have direct blood supply
  • B. The process of ossification replaces a cartilage to bone
  • C. The protein that makes up cartilage is called chondrin while that that makes up bone is called ossein
  • D. Cartilage grows from both ends while bones grow from one of its epiphysis
  • E. They both have living cells within them
  • F. Haversian system is absent in cartilage but present in bones


The cerebellum is a part of the brain that plays a vital role in the body's voluntary and physical movements. It is located at the posterior part of the brain, just below the occipital and temporal lobes of the cerebrum. It is also located posteriorly just at the same level as the pons. This is shown in the image below:

Cerebellum - Len Academy

Please read on the cerebrum here.

The cerebellum (sometimes referred to as the little brain) accounts for approximately 10% of the brain's size and it consists of almost half of the brain cells or neurones.

The cerebellum is divided in its midline into two cerebellar hemispheres by a structure called vermis. This is shown in the image below:

Cerebellar Hemispheres - Len Academy

Please read on the introduction to the human brain here.

The surface of the cerebellum is referred to as the cerebellar cortex and it is composed of gray matter.

The cerebral medulla is located underneath the cerebellar cortex and it is made up of white matter. Embedded within the white matter are the 4 cerebellar nuclei. These are:

  1. Dentate nuclei

  2. Emboliform nuclei

  3. Globose nuclei

  4. Fastigi nuclei

You can read on the midbrain and its functions here.

The cerebellum is lobed and this gives its surfaces a distinctive appearance. It can therefore be divided into three lobes. These are:

  1. Flocculonodular lobe

  2. Anterior lobe

  3. Posterior lobe

The flocculonodular and anterior lobes can been seen above the primary fissure while the posterior lobe lies below the primary fissure. This is shown in the image below:

Lobes of the Cerebellum - Len Academy

Often times, the signals coming into the cerebrum are immediately processed and directed out as output via an appropriate nerve. This rapid process is termed feedforward processing.

Feedforward processing implies that the internal transmission of nervous impulses within the cerebellum is minimal.

You can read on the uniqueness of man here.

Functionally, the cerebellum receives sensory information from the spinal cord and other parts of the brain (e.g midbrain). It also regulates the motor movements of the body, thereby bringing about proper coordination, balance, posture and speech. For this reason, the cerebellum is often considered as a motor structure since cerebellar damages can lead to impairments in motor function like movement and posture.

Please read on posture and postural defects here.

Interestingly, the examination of damages to the cerebellum has proven to be the most important clues to its function.

When the cerebellum becomes damaged in humans or animals, they tend to show problems associated with motor functions. To this end, precision movements are lost in such animals or humans. Also they begin to show an uncoordinated, random, or poorly timed muscular activities and movements.

Please read on the functions of the human skeleton here.

Functions of the Cerebellum

  1. It coordinates voluntary movement of the body and muscular activity.

  2. It coordinates posture and balance in humans. A typical example of an impairment on this function is seen during the intake of alcohol. The person involved loses balance because alcohol impairs the coordination of posture and balance by the cerebellum.
    Please read on the homeostasis here.

  3. The cerebellum is crucial in learning new skills (that is; motor learning) through a trial and error process. Such skills will include learning to ride a bicycle or throwing a ball into a basketball net.
    You can read on the game of basketball here.

  4. It controls speech and bodily coordination.

  5. The cerebellum plays an active role in cognitive functions like memory and learning.
    You can attempt Len Academy questions on various subjects here.

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Amazing facts in Biology

Russia is home to the largest area of forest in our world with a land mass of 815 million hectares

Giant Squid - Len Academy

Giant squid lives deep in the ocean and they have the largest eyes in the world

The movements of the fingers are controlled by muscles of the palms and forehands

Platypus - Len Academy

Platypus (sometimes referred to as the duck-billed platypus) is an egg-laying, semiaquatic mammal found in eastern Australia. It has no stomach and as such, its food goes from the mouth through the esophagus and directly to their intestines.

Pufferfish - Len Academy

Pufferfish contain a toxin called tetrodotoxin. This makes them foul tasting and poisonous to predators. Tetrodotoxin is about 1,200 times more poisonous than cyanide, and there is enough toxin in one pufferfish to kill 30 adult humans. Unfortunately, there isn't any known antidote to this poison.

Interestingly, a delicacy in Japan (called fugu) is made from pufferfish. This meal is very expensive, and must be prepared by trained and licensed chefs. An improper preparation of fugu may lead to the customer's death. Sadly, such deaths are recorded annually

Wombat - Len Academy ​​​​​​

Wombats are the only animal with a cube-shaped poo. They can stack up these cube-shaped poo, marking their territory with it

Robert Waldow - Len Academy

Robert Wadlow (1918–1940) remains the tallest man ever recorded in the Guinness World Records. He was an American who stood at 8 feet, 11 inches.

An abnormally enlarged pituitary gland had resulted into Robert Wadlow's giant size.

Cockroach is the fastest land animal on six legs

Laughing ape - Len Academy

Like humans, all apes laugh when tickled

Ostrich eye and brain - Len Academy

An ostrich's eye is bigger than its brain

Notable points in Biology

Layers of an Artery - Len Academy

An artery is composed of three layers:

  • The outermost layer is termed tunica adventitia (or tunica external). It consist mainly of collagen fibres and connective tissues that anchors the arteries to other nearby tissues.

  • The middle layer is named tunica media. It is made up of smooth muscles and elastic fibres that supports the artery in conveying blood at high pressures.

  • The inner layer is called tunica intima (or tunica internal). It is lined by a smooth tissue called endothelium, and is made up of a fine network of connective tissues.

Please read on the layers of an artery here

All living organisms possess various features in order to survive in their environment. This is the concept of adaptation. As an instance, a fish is able to live in water because it has gills and fins.

Also, a camel is able to survive in the desert because it has large feet to aid walking on sand without sinking. It also has long eyelashes to help protect it from the blowing sand and wind.

Plants are also able to live in different habitats because they have the required adaptive features towards that habitat. For instance:

  • Plants that live in/on water are termed hydrophytes.

  • Plants that live on land with moderate amount of water are termed mesophytes.

  • Plants that live on deserts or arid lands are termed xerophytes.

The point is:

All organisms have various features on them that enables them adapt in their habitat

For a thing to be considered living, it must possess all the basic characteristics of life. These include:

  1. Movement

  2. Respiration

  3. Nutrition

  4. Irritability or Sensitivity

  5. Growth

  6. Excretion

  7. Reproduction

  8. Death

  9. Adaptation

  10. Competition

Please read the explanations on all the basic characteristics of life here

During strenuous exercises like sprinting or running, your body may actually work in the shortage of oxygen. During this time, your body owes oxygen (called oxygen debt) and it must be replenished or repayed after the exercise is stopped. This is why you breathe excess of oxygen after you stopped the exercise.

This is the concept of anaerobic respiration

Food Chain - Len Academy

A food chain is a diagram that shows the relationship between plants and animals within a habitat on the basis of how they rely on each other for food.

Note: Habitat is a place where an organism live. It is of three types:

  • Terrestrial (Land)
  • Aquatic (Water)
  • Arboreal (Treetops)

You can read on food chain here