• The HPC Anatomy field trip - August 2016


On the Thursday 11th August, a group of 14 HPC students were invited to The University of Queensland St Lucia campus for an anatomy excursion. Many of the students were from our final Diploma course, however students from Certificate III and IV in Fitness courses were also encouraged to apply. It was a bit of an adventure, with half of the class travelling via train from Nerang station. After arriving, we exchanged thoughts on seeing cadavers, many us for the first time, over a bite of Guzman Y Gomez!

After lunch we relaxed under the trees in the Great Court (a courtyard listed in the Queensland Heritage Register), admiring the campus architecture while waiting for the remainder of the class. At 1 pm we entered the Gross Anatomy Facility, where we had a brief induction and explanation of what the next two hours would entail. We donned our disposable lab coats, safety glasses and nitrile gloves – each of us looking like medical laboratory scientists.

In the anatomy lab, there were approximately 10 stations in two rows, which we moved around as a group. The first station included very detailed, plastic 3D models. Another station focussed on actual human bones, including the male and female pelvis with specific reference made to the differences in pelvic inlet and pubic arch. The next stations were wet and dry specimens of different anatomical locations, so as each individual muscle could be identified. The class asked the anatomy lecturer many questions, especially regarding which muscle was which. It is a lot harder to determine which muscle you are looking at in a real live specimen! The final part of the experience was a full cadaver, which had been carefully dissected so as each of the internal organs could be removed one at a time and then placed back in situ in a puzzle like manner.

All-in-all, we had a fantastic time! It was fantastic to be surrounded by like-minded people, who were very respectful and although it would have been very confronting for first timers, everyone seemed to handle it really well! Students described the experience as “fascinating”, “awesome” and an “incredible experience”. Although, the smell was unexpected for some students, most agreed that it was something they “would like to do again!”

Author: Dr. Sammie Carmichael, HPC Admin


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