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Student perspectives of imaging anatomy in undergraduate medical education



Radiological imaging is gaining relevance in the acquisition of competencies in clinical anatomy. The aim of this study was to evaluate the perceptions of medical students on teaching/learning of imaging anatomy as an integrated part of anatomical education. A questionnaire was designed to evaluate the perceptions of second-year students participating in a clinical anatomy course over three consecutive academic years. A principal component analysis was used to evaluate the dimensionality of the questionnaire. The variables were summarized using frequencies, mean, median, 25th percentile, 75th percentile, minimum, and maximum. The results demonstrated that students felt the teaching of imaging anatomy influenced learning in the clinical anatomy course (mean = 4.5, median = 5.0) and subsequent clinical courses (mean = 4.4, median = 4.0). Regarding the imaging techniques used in the demonstration of anatomical structures, computed tomography (median = 5.0) and magnetic resonance imaging (median = 5.0) were highly rated. Students suggested the use of additional support material (37.6%) and favored a more practical approach. In conclusion, the results of this work highlight the value of imaging anatomy in learning human anatomy. Students' comments pointed out a need to focus teaching/learning programs toward a more practical rather than theoretical approach as well as a need to provide a better fit between sectional anatomy and clinical cases using imaging anatomy. In order to provide an optimal learning environment to students, it also seems important to create improved media material as an additional resource tool. Anat Sci Educ. © 2013 American Association of Anatomists.