Original Publication
Open Access

Upper Limb Anatomy Tutorial Using an Imaging Platform

Published: August 18, 2015 | 10.15766/mep_2374-8265.10167

Included in this publication:

  • Upper Limb Instructor's Guide.docx
  • Upper Limb Anatomy Tutorial Using an Imaging Platform.pptx

To view all publication components, extract (i.e., unzip) them from the downloaded .zip file.

Editor's Note: This publication predates our implementation of the Educational Summary Report in 2016 and thus displays a different format than newer publications.


Introduction: This resource contains a self-guided tutorial developed to instruct students in the relationship between the anatomy, radiology, and clinical concepts of the upper limb. The upper limb tutorial was developed as a collaboration between an anatomist, a radiologist, and medical students. This diverse development team facilitated the creation of a tutorial that is complete, relevant to medical practice, and presented optimally for student learning. This tutorial (part of a series of regional imaging tutorials) serves to enhance student integration of clinically relevant anatomy with imaging, a platform most often used clinically for diagnostic purposes. Methods: This tutorial is composed of radiologic images such as plain films, CTs, and MRIs. Each imaging study is discreetly labeled in an interactive PowerPoint format. In addition, imaging concepts and applicable clinical correlates are highlighted where appropriate. To facilitate quick learning, information is presented in a question/answer format. Learners can use this feature as a knowledge self-assessment or as a review of previously learned material. An instructor’s guide is also included. This document should be used first by the instructor to understand the tutorial’s function, development, and the way in which it has been studied for efficacy. Instructors should then review the tutorial and modify it to best suit their curriculum. Subsequently, the tutorial should be distributed to students for learning in conjunction with the formal medical school curriculum of the upper limb region. Results: This tutorial has been available during the formal first-year anatomy curriculum as well as during the fourth-year advanced anatomy elective. Students reported a high degree of satisfaction with the tutorial. Of the 24 students who responded to the post-study survey, 71% reported they would use the tutorial at least once per week, suggesting that students found the tutorial useful. Anecdotally, students who use the tutorial report it as very useful to studying anatomy, radiology, and clinical correlations of the upper limb. Finally, students exposed to the tutorial had a 10% improvement of mean assessment scores compared to those who did not (p = .05). The exposed students also experienced a 16% greater improvement on applied questions compared to those who did not (p = .05). Discussion: This tool was designed as an adjunct to formal undergraduate anatomy education. The clear layout and consistent labeling enable students to learn information of increasing complexity at their own rate, making it an ideal format for self-directed learning. Additionally, the depth of material included allows for review of anatomy for advanced students, including residents.

Educational Objectives

By the end of this session, learners will be able to:

  1. Facilitate student ability to identify and recall anatomic structures, regions, and relationships within the upper limb.
  2. Introduce radiology concepts early in medical education to facilitate application of anatomy in this clinical context.
  3. Provide a learning tool that can be used by learners at multiple levels of education, through an ability to focus on anatomic structures, clinical correlation, or both.

Author Information

  • Michelle Lazarus, PhD: Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine
  • Matthew Fanelli: Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine
  • Alison Stanley, MD: Lancaster General Health
  • Pamela Brian, MD: Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center

None to report.

None to report.


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  2. Miles KA. Diagnostic imaging in undergraduate medical education: an expanding role. Clin Radiol. 2005;60(7):742-745. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.crad.2005.02.011
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Lazarus M, Fanelli M, Stanley A, Brian P. Upper limb anatomy tutorial using an imaging platform. MedEdPORTAL. 2015;11:10167. https://doi.org/10.15766/mep_2374-8265.10167