BSc Developmental Biology with Industrial/Professional Experience

Year of entry: 2022

Course unit details:
Advances in Anatomical Sciences (L)

Unit code BIOL31651
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 3
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Offered by School of Biological Sciences
Available as a free choice unit? No


In this unit you will refresh your knowledge of Human Anatomy through interactive revision lectures and by using online resources.  You will then build on your existing knowledge and apply it to the clinical and research settings through a series of synoptic lectures. Clinicians lecturing on this unit will demonstrate the relevance of anatomy in modern clinical practice. Alongside this, you will be exposed to current research methodology in the field of Human Anatomy. Topics include; lung cancer diagnosis, management of aortic disease, evolution of the teeth and skull, peritoneal pathologies and anatomical changes in gut inflammation.


Unit title Unit code Requirement type Description
Anatomy RSM BIOL20912 Pre-Requisite Recommended
Human Anatomy & Histology BIOL21291 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
Anatomy of the Special Sense Organs BIOL21402 Pre-Requisite Recommended
Human Anatomy and Histology BIOL20711 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
BIOL31651 Pre-Requisite is BIOL21291

BIOL31651 Pre-Requisite is BIOL21291


The unit aims to build on the students existing knowledge of human anatomy.  It will allow them explore specific topics in greater detail from both clinical and research perspectives.

Learning outcomes

Students will be able to

• Use their anatomical knowledge to discuss current research and clinical developments in specific topics relating to the cardiovascular respiratory systems, skull and gastrointestinal system.

• Use relevant scientific literature to enhance their knowledge and further develop their critical thinking skills



• Anatomy of cardiovascular & respiratory systems review lecture

• Lung cancer diagnosis - examines modern imaging techniques used for diagnosing lung cancer.

• Cardiac Development - covers research into developmental errors of the heart

• Surgical anatomy of the aorta and contemporary management of aortic diseases - this clinical lecture will examine the how the structure of the aorta is reflected in the management of aortic disease. It will review the latest methods of treatment.

• Anatomy of the skull review lecture - this interactive lecture aims to refresh student knowledge in order to prepare for the clinical and research lectures.

• Directed self study of the skull using Complete Anatomy

• Morphing skulls: how human heads evolve - this lecture examines morphometric issues related to the skull

• Functional anatomy of cranial sutures - this session looks at structural changes in cranial sutures throughout life.

• Evolution and development of teeth

• Anatomy of the gastrointestinal system review lecture - interactive lecture to refresh student knowledge in order to prepare for the clinical and research lectures.

• Anatomy of the gastrointestinal system practical session.

• Ontogeny & disease of the Pancreas - examines the microscopic arrangements of the islets of Langerhans in disease

• Anatomical changes in gut inflammation - examines the microscopic changes that occur in conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome

• Peritoneal pathologies - examines the structure of the peritoneum and changes that occur during disease.

Employability skills

Group/team working
In the interactive lectures students will work in small groups to share their knowledge. Students with a scientific background (BSC students) are encouraged to share their scientific knowledge with those students with a more clinical background (intercalating medics). This process is reversed when the subject matter has more of a clinical basis.
Oral communication
In the interactive revision lectures students will be encouraged to discuss anatomical topics with the whole group.
Many of the lectures focus on current research in a particular anatomical field. The students will therefore gain a greater insight into the theory of research.
Written communication
Students will have the opportunity to answer a formative essay question. This will be marked by a member of staff in a peer marking session.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Other 10%
Written exam 90%

Written examination (90%) consisting of two equally weighted essay questions (each from a separate anatomical theme - thorax, skull or abdomen).

Online coursework assessment - Three (10%, equally weighted), eLearning assessments containing a series of multiple choice questions based on a scientific paper or case study

Feedback methods

The review lectures will be interactive and formative feedback will be given verbally during these sessions. Students will have the opportunity to complete a formative essay with feedback.  A feedback session will be held following the summative examination.

Recommended reading

  • Moore KL, Dalley AF & Agur AMR (2009) Clinically Oriented Anatomy (6th edition). Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins
  • Snell, R (2008) Clinical Anatomy (8th Edition). Lippincott, Williams & Williams

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 2
Lectures 15
Independent study hours
Independent study 80

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Ingrid Gouldsborough Unit coordinator

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