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Keywords:

  • anatomy education;
  • Second Life™;
  • virtual technology;
  • avatar;
  • online learning;
  • computer-assisted learning;
  • gross anatomy;
  • virtual anatomy laboratory;
  • innovations

Abstract

This article describes the emerging role of educational multiuser virtual environments, specifically Second Life™, in anatomical sciences education. Virtual worlds promote inquiry-based learning and conceptual understanding, potentially making them applicable for teaching and learning gross anatomy. A short introduction to Second Life as an anatomical educational tool is provided, along with description of existing anatomy applications and future directions for this innovative teaching modality. Anat Sci Educ. © 2011 American Association of Anatomists.