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A Nursing Student’s Guide: Online Anatomy Simulations and Tutorials

As the need for health care increases in the United States, nursing is becoming one of the more popular career options. For students who are pursuing a career in nursing or other positions in various health care fields, an education in anatomy and other health related subjects is mandatory. Health care often involves surgery and other medical operations. For this reason, nurses must possess a sound knowledge in anatomy so that they can assist surgeons and doctors during important procedures as well as have a general knowledge of how the human body operates. However, most students often struggle with anatomy and find that they require extra help. Fortunately, the Internet has much to offer in supplemental anatomy material. Look to the following resources that provide an online and interactive education in anatomy.

  • Human Anatomy Online: The website offers interactive tutorial and reference on laboratory dissections covering the head and neck, thorax, back, upper extremity, and more.
  • The Virtual Autopsy: Students can come here to practice their autopsy skills and knowledge without the blood!
  • The Visible Human Project: The US National Library of Medicine provides great resources on human anatomy with images, animations, and more.
  • Human Anatomy Dissection: John Lillie’s series of online lectures covering the human skull, the mediastinum and heart, lateral aspect of face, and others.
  • The Bassett Collection: Stanford University gives an overview of the renowned Bassett collection on human anatomy with a link to some of the images.
  • Medical Terminology: An interactive course to test your knowledge of medical terms.
  • Human Biodyssey: Gateway Community College offers a series of online tutorials and histology on skeletal system, nervous system, urinary system, and so on.
  • Models & Specimens: The University of New Mexico provides a series of images on various human anatomy topics.
  • Anatomy-Histology Tutorials: Come here to find online tutorials covering normal anatomy, neuroanatomy, histotechniques, special stains, and more.
  • HistoWeb: These interactive tutorials cover a range of topics like epithelia, glands, GI system, cartilage, urinary, and so on.
  • Zoomified Histology: The Loyola University offers a great collection of histology lessons with practical exercises.
  • Online Tutorials: The lecturers of Alverno College give a number of online tutorials on the nervous system, circulatory system, digestive system, skin, and others.
  • Anatomical Images: Here’s the index to a good collection of anatomical images.
  • Anatomy Atlases: Come here to find all sorts of information on anatomy.
  • Cell Biology: The perfect place to find animations, interactive tutorials, and movies on the subject.
  • The Cell Cycle & Mitosis: Learn about mitosis with this interactive tutorial.
  • Animating Biology: Carnegie Mellon presents a series of animations on cell membranes, transport, endocytosis, and DNA/RNA.
  • General Human Anatomy: Marion Diamond of Berkeley gives a series of lectures on the subject.
  • Acland’s Video Atlas of Human Anatomy: The six volume video collection covers the trunk, the neck, and head, the upper extremity, the lower extremity, the internal organs, and reproductive system.
  • eSkeletons: The University of Texas at Austin provides an interactive site on skeletons, possibly the best on the Internet.
  • Skeletal System: Come here to view images of the skeletal system and test yourself by naming the parts.
  • The Anatomy of Memory: Learn more about the human brain by following the dissection of a sheep brain.
  • Synapse Animation: Watch the animation to learn about “Classic” chemical neurotransmission.
  • Atlas of the Brain: Harvard University presents a comprehensive collection of neuroimaging on normal brain, cerebrovascular disease, neoplastic disease, degenerative disease, and more.
  • Surgery Videos: A place to watch surgery of coronary bypass, angiocardiography, and heart replacement.
  • Circulatory System: Learn about the fetal system and postnatal by viewing these animations with explanation.
  • Anatomy Lab: Many online tutorials and exercises covering a host of human anatomy topics.
  • Web Anatomy: The University of Minnesota offers a range of anatomy games and tests.