Influences on anatomical knowledge: The complete arguments

Esther M. Bergman*, Inge W. H. Verheijen, Albert J. J. A. Scherpbier, Cees P. M. Van der Vleuten, Anique B. H. De Bruin

*Corresponding author for this work

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Eight factors are claimed to have a negative influence on anatomical knowledge of medical students: (1) teaching by nonmedically qualified teachers, (2) the absence of a core anatomy curriculum, (3) decreased use of dissection as a teaching tool, (4) lack of teaching anatomy in context, (5) integrated curricula (problem-based learning or systems-based curricula), (6) inadequate assessment of anatomical knowledge, (7) decreased anatomy teaching time, and (8) neglect of vertical integration of anatomy teaching. A recent review revealed a lack of evidence underpinning any of the claims owing to the poor quality of papers, and recommendations were made for education and research on teaching in context and the implementation of vertical integration and of assessment strategies. In this article, we will describe the alleged factors fully, revealing additional recommendations for improving anatomy education by promoting recognition for teaching in institutions, by enhancing the professional recognition of anatomists through the implementation of a national postgraduate training program, and by encouraging anatomists to participate in educational research. Clin. Anat. 27:296-303, 2014.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)296-303
JournalClinical Anatomy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2014


  • medical education
  • basic sciences
  • anatomy teaching
  • anatomy education
  • anatomical knowledge

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