2021 Teaching Anatomy & Physiology Webinar Series

Teaching Anatomy and Physiology:

ADInstruments, HAPS and InsideScientific are excited to present this 4-part OPEN-ACCESS webinar series focused on current and updated teaching techniques in Anatomy and Physiology.

Science education has evolved in the face of recent challenges. While delivering content in remote learning environments is not necessarily ideal, and poses challenges to both educators and students, it has become necessary to keep everyone safe. But with this change also comes opportunity and benefits that only virtual learning can provide.

This series shares new and effective ways to teach students through remote learning and examinations. Experts discuss their experiences, tools and best practices to help educators adapt to virtual learning while maintaining high levels of participation, interactivity, understanding and excitement.

How to Future-Proof Your Teaching

THU, JAN 21, 2020

Tony Macknight, MD, PhD

The COVID pandemic requires adaptability in our teaching and provides a unique opportunity to rethink what we do. Whatever we do, this rethink should be built around the concept of active learning and be guided by what I call ‘The 4 E’s of Learning’. Learning should be Efficient, Effective, Everlasting, and Exciting. Whether you teach a conventional lecture/laboratory course with some tutorials, a blended learning course with a mix of on–line tasks, flipped classroom activities and laboratories, or a fully remote on–line course, the same principles can be applied. In particular, it is really important to future–proof your course so that you can move with as little disruption as possible, to the required type of delivery. Whatever your preferred format for delivering your course, there are elements in common.

Lectures: The new technologies are making the conventional 50 minute lecture obsolete. Can we devise a format that would be equally suitable for the conventional program, blended learning and fully on–line remote courses?

Tutorials: So often, students prepare poorly for tutorials. Again, can we devise a format that is equally effective for all types of program?

Laboratories: Physiology is a laboratory–base discipline and laboratory work designed to illustrate important concepts and enhance their understanding, is central to a tertiary level physiology program. How best to deliver this experience?

This webinar will expand on these themes and be illustrated by examples from the work that we have been doing at ADInstruments to support Physiology teaching.


Tony Macknight MD PhD

Tony Macknight, MD, PhD
Director of Education,
ADInstruments, Inc

Understanding the Peripheral Nervous System

THU, FEB 25, 2021

The peripheral nervous system, from the cranial nerves to the spinal nerves and all their autonomic branches, is a daunting network of wires that communicate input and output between all parts of the body and the central nervous system. This webinar will cover evolutionary and developmental patterns that clarify the structural organization of the peripheral nervous system. It is intended for professors and teachers who want to have a more thorough understanding of peripheral nervous anatomy so they can more effectively teach students about this network of nerves and help their students become more effective learners.
After the presentation you will be able to clearly answer the questions that many good students often ask:

  • Why do all spinal nerves have the same basic structure?
  • Why does spinal nerve structure differ from cranial nerve structure?
  • Why are there dorsal root ganglia and not ventral root ganglia?
  • Why are there autonomic ganglia and two efferent neurons in the autonomic pathways?
  • Why is the parasympathetic output craniosacral in origin and the sympathetic output thoracolumbar in origin?
  • Why are there white communicating rami at only some spinal nerve levels and gray communicating rami at all spinal nerve levels?
  • Which nerves retain a more primitive structure, cranial nerves or spinal nerves and why?


Mark Nielsen, MS

Mark Nielsen, MS
Professor, John Legler Endowed Lecturer of Human Anatomy
University of Utah

Using SARS-CoV-2 to Teach Physiology and Science

THU, MAR 18, 2021

The sudden appearance of the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and the global pandemic of COVID-19, the disease resulting from SARS-CoV-2 infection, provide us a unique opportunity to show students science in action as researchers and healthcare professionals around the world scramble to understand the virus and its effects on the human body. In this presentation we will explore some of the ways that we can incorporate today’s headlines into the curriculum by discussing the pathophysiology and pathology of SARS-CoV-2 infection and how it demonstrates the integration of body function across multiple organ systems. Teaching about the coronavirus pandemic also creates opportunities to have students critically analyze research studies and news reports, and to discuss ethical dilemmas such as the distribution of limited amounts of vaccine or the triage of critically ill patients when lifesaving equipment is limited. One important goal of teaching about the coronavirus pandemic is to have students learn to tolerate ambiguity, and to understand that today’s “facts” are simply our best models of what we know.


Dee Silverthorn, PhD

Dee Silverthorn, PhD
Distinguished Teaching Professor emerita of Physiology
The University of Texas at Austin

My Cousin, the Tree: Integrating the Anatomy & Physiology of Plant and Human Biology

THU, APR 15, 2021

Anatomy, physiology and general biology are traditionally taught in separate portions of a biology curriculum, and introductory A&P courses often lack an evolutionary biology emphasis. At Penn State, we have developed a Plant and Animal Biology course taken by first- and second-year undergraduate biology majors that integrates plant and animal biology around common themes, such as physical support, gas exchange, and energy acquisition, with an emphasis on anatomy & physiology. Students study how plants and animals evolved solutions to shared challenges such as the transition to land and maintaining homeostasis in a terrestrial environment. Many of these solutions are surprisingly similar despite co-evolving separately. Other mechanisms can be traced back to the last eukaryotic common ancestor that gave rise to plants and animals. Our goal is to help students organize their understanding of biology around larger themes common across the life sciences, and to see plants and animals (including humans), not as unrelated entities relegated to artificial boxes within a curriculum, but as evolutionary cousins in a diverse family of intimately related organisms.


John R. Waters, PhD

John R. Waters, PhD
Teaching Professor, Biology
The Pennsylvania State University