Malone, Erica Renee (2016-07). Investigating the Role of an Interactive Simulation Model on the Ability to Visualize Concepts Related to Gross Anatomy. Master's Thesis. Thesis uri icon


  • Currently many different types of visual aids are available for teaching and studying gross anatomy: illustrations, cadavers, static physical models, plastinated models, and dissection videos are a few examples. These visual aids may be used to identify structures and, in some cases, to facilitate understanding of the spatial relationships amongst structures. However, knowing the identity and location of a structure is only a portion of the content that should be mastered in a gross anatomy course. A knowledge of the basic functions of structures is crucial to understanding anatomy and is often only explained verbally or in text. One major function that current teaching and learning tools leave to the imagination is that of skeletal muscle - the concept of movement. One possible solution to address this oversight is the creation of a kinetic, interactive model that demonstrates movement. In order to create the optimum teaching and learning tool, creation of this type of model should incorporate aspects of many different disciplines and should facilitate student learning by providing engaging and intuitive interaction. To demonstrate the effects on incorporating such a tool into anatomy education, a physical based interactive kinetic simulation model of the canine pelvic limb was constructed. Undergraduate students enrolled in the Biomedical Anatomy course at Texas A&M University were separated into two groups based on their lab section, one of which was allowed to use the model while the other was not. Positive student feedback as well as improved quiz scores show that the interactive simulation model had a positive effect on student comprehension in anatomy education.

publication date

  • August 2016