The Anatomist Tweets
By way of introduction, my name is Kira. I am a 3rd year MD/PhD student at Emory, and this year, I will be a teaching assistant for the medical school's anatomy course. As part of the work, I am trying to develop methods of 1) improving student understanding of human anatomy and its relationship to function and 2) to develop intra- and inter-team communication. For those of you unfamiliar with anatomy courses, there are a few basic logistical details--students form groups (in Emory's case, there are 6 students per group, comprising three pairs) and each group dissects a cadaver together. The dissection is divided into individual dissections (e.g. back, buttock/thigh/knee, lower leg/foot, etc.) and a pair of students physically dissects then is responsible for presenting their work to the professors and teaching the dissection to other members of their group.
And even with all the logistics worked out, dissection is confusing. Structures look similar, every body is different, and almost no student enters the class with significant anatomy experience. In order to address issue 1, I'm going to use AnatomyTV, a 3D "invisible-man" style software to demonstrate the dissections in advance and place key structures in context.
To address issue 2, I'm trying something completely different. I'm going to get students to tweet their work. By creating a privacy controlled Twitter network of anatomy team accounts, the hope is that students can post questions (Does anyone have an intact ansa cervicalis???), findings (Woah, total knee replacement! No wonder there was that big scar...), and other comments (Ah, the brachial plexus--we meet at last.).
Do any of you have experience using Twitter in the classroom? Advice on getting social-media rolling? So far, all I've found for Twitter use in medical teaching is this Grey's Anatomy episode.