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Unit of study_

ANAT3010: Anatomical Imaging: From Micro to Macro

Semester 1, 2020 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

This unit provides an opportunity for you to gain theoretical and practical understanding of fundamental and state of the art anatomical imaging techniques. Module 1 examines the theory, principles and practice of microscopy, in which you will gain a deeper understanding of the techniques used to describe the detailed organisation of biological tissues. Module 2 investigates X-ray imaging, CT scanning, MRIs, ultrasound and PET scans. Emphasis is placed in the first two modules on developing your ability to analyse images, compare and describe the advantages and disadvantages of each technique and to hypothesise how these techniques can be used to solve research and clinical questions. Module 3 explores the specific uses of these imaging technologies in the fields of neuroscience, cardiology, forensic osteology, pathology and surgery. You will apply the understanding gained in modules 1 and 2 to specific research and clinical studies. This integrated approach to learning will give you a broader perspective and understanding of the importance and impact of anatomical imaging. The unit provides a basis for further studies in fields such as neuroscience, or forensic science or in postgraduate medicine, allied health or in areas of research requiring knowledge of imaging techniques.

Unit details and rules

Unit code ANAT3010
Academic unit
Credit points 6
EMHU3001 or EMHU3002
12cp from [ANAT2008 or (ANAT2010 or ANAT2910) or (PHSI2005 or PHSI2905) or (PHSI2006 or PHSI2906) or (PHSI2007 or PHSI2907 or MEDS2001) or (PHSI2008 or PHSI2908) or MEDS2002 or MEDS2003 or MEDS2004 or MEDS2005 or (PSYC2010 or PSYC2910) or (PSYC2011 or PSYC2911) or PSYC2012 or PSYC2013 or PSYC2014 or PSYC2015 or (BIOL2021 or BIOL2921) or (BIOL2022 or BIOL2922) or (BIOL2024 or BIOL2924) or (BIOL2030 or BIOL2930) or (BIOL2031 or BIOL2931) or (BMED2401 and BMED2402)
Assumed knowledge

(BIOL1006 or BIOL1906 or BIOL1996) or (BIOL1007 or BIOL1907 or BIOL1997) or (BIOL1008 or BIOL1908 or BIOL1998 or MEDS1X01) or (BIOL1003 or BIOL1903 or BIOL1993)

Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Suzanne Ollerenshaw,
Lecturer(s) Sarah Croker,
Suzanne Ollerenshaw,
Luke Henderson,
Kevin Keay,
Claire Goldsbury,
Sean Lal,
Denise Donlon,
Tutor(s) Elizabeth Hegedus,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Assignment Online Tutorial Exercises
Online Tutorial Exercises
18% - x4 SAQs, labelled images, calculations
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO4 LO7 LO8 LO9
Final exam Online Final exam
MCQs, SAQs and extended response
40% Formal exam period 2 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2
Assignment Research essay
Applied anatomical essay
24% Week 13 2000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO9
Tutorial quiz Weekly topic online quiz
6 MCQs on lectures of the week
18% Weekly 6 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO5

Assessment summary

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy. As a general guide, a High distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a Distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Grade Descriptors Explanation / Interpretation
High distinction (85-100) Work of exceptional standard Mastery of topics showing extensive integration and ability to transfer knowledge to novel contexts; treatment of tasks shows an advanced synthesis of ideas; demonstration of initiative, complex understanding and analysis; work is very well presented; all criteria addressed and learning outcomes achieved to an outstanding level

Distinction (75-84)

Work of superior standard
Excellent achievement, consistent evidence of deep understanding and application of knowledge in medical science; treatment of tasks shows advanced understanding of topics; demonstration of initiative, complex understanding and analysis; work is well-presented; all criteria addressed and learning outcomes achieved to a superior level

Credit( 65-74)

Competent work demonstrating potential for higher study Confident in explaining medical science processes, with evidence of solid understanding and achievement; occasional lapses indicative of unresolved issues; treatment of tasks shows a good understanding of topic; work is well-presented with a minimum of errors; all criteria addressed and learning outcomes achieved to a high level

Pass (50-64)

Work of acceptable standard

Satisfactory level of engagement with and understanding of topic; some inconsistencies in understanding and knowledge of medical science; work is adequately presented, with some errors or omissions, most criteria addressed and learning outcomes achieved to an adequate level

Fail (<50)

Work not of acceptable standard Unsatisfactory achievement and engagement with the medical science discipline; inadequate understanding or fundamental misunderstanding of topics; most criteria and learning outcomes not clearly or adequately addressed or achieved; lack of effort/involvement in the unit


For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

This unit has an exception to the standard University policy or supplementary information has been provided by the unit coordinator. This information is displayed below:

All assignments must be submitted by the due date and quizzes and exams attended when they are scheduled. Students are expected to manage their time and to prioritise tasks to meet deadlines. Assessment items submitted after the due date without an approved extension using a special consideration or special arrangement form or request will incur penalties. Failure to meet assessment deadlines will incur mark deductions of 5% of the maximum awardable mark available for every day past the due date (for electronic submissions, days late includes Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays). These deductions will continue for 10 calendar days, until the solutions for the assignment are released, or marked assignments are returned to other students. At that point the mark awarded will be zero. For example, on an assignment given a mark of 70/100, the penalty would be 5 marks if submitted up to 24 hours late, resulting in a final mark of 65/100. If the assignment is submitted 6 days late, the penalty would be 30 marks and the final mark would be 40/100. If the assignment is more than 10 days late, submitted after the solutions for the assignment are released, or marked assignments are returned to other students, the final mark will be 0/100.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 1. Histochemistry; 2. Immunocytochemistry Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO5
Staining Practical Practical (3 hr) LO2 LO7 LO8
Week 02 Light Microscopy Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO5
Microscopy & Image Analysis Practical Practical (3 hr) LO2 LO8
Week 03 Confocal Microscopy Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO5
Confocal Microscopy Workshop (3 hr) LO2 LO8
Week 04 Transmission Electron Microscopy Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO5
TEM imaging & artefacts Workshop (3 hr) LO2 LO8
Week 05 Scanning Electron Microscopy Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO5
SEM imaging & analysis tutorial Tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO8
Week 06 X-Rays Lecture (2 hr) LO2 LO3
Interpreting X-rays: How to relate them to anatomy Practical (3 hr) LO5 LO8
Week 07 Magnetic Resonance Imaging Lecture (2 hr) LO2 LO3
How to interpret MRI Tutorial (3 hr) LO5 LO8
Week 08 Ultrasound Lecture (2 hr) LO2 LO3
Ultrasound procedural skills and interpretation of images Practical (3 hr) LO5 LO8
Week 09 Positron Emission Tomography & Computed Tomography Lecture (2 hr) LO2 LO3
PET & CT imaging & interpretation tutorial Tutorial (3 hr) LO5 LO8
Week 10 1. Neuroscience: applied imaging; 2. Pathology: applied imaging Lecture (2 hr) LO2 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO9
Week 11 1. Forensic Osteology: applied imaging; 2. Cardiology: clinical applications Lecture (2 hr) LO2 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO9
Week 12 PhD student presentations Lecture and tutorial (2 hr) LO4
Researcher Presentations Lecture and tutorial (2 hr) LO4 LO5
Week 13 Tutorial on Weeks 1-9 Tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO4 LO8 LO9
Tutorial on Weeks 10, 11 & 12 Tutorial (3 hr) LO4 LO5 LO8 LO9

Attendance and class requirements

Attendance: Attendance at all practical and tutorial sessions is compulsory and rolls will be marked. W1 and W8 Practical classes require Lab Coat and covered shoes. These are the only classes that require this as the other practical classes are dry labs.

NOTE in view of COVID-19 impact: Attendance will be recorded from students' arrival date on campus or from March 31st, whichever is the earliest. From February 24 (week 1), students enrolled in this unit should engage with and study all online content, as directed in the Canvas site, including the submission of any required formative tasks and completion of any asynchronous activities.

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. describe, illustrate and discuss with reference to both theory and practice the strengths and limitations of a broad range of microscopic techniques and their associated tissue preparation requirements
  • LO2. apply theoretical and practical knowledge to using qualitative and quantitative analyses, in microscopy
  • LO3. describe, illustrate and discuss with reference to both theory and practice the strengths and limitations of X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, ultrasound scanning and PET and describe the uses of each technique in structural and functional imaging
  • LO4. work autonomously and independently, and in small groups, to critically analyze published scientific research exploring anatomical imaging techniques used as diagnostic tools and show in written presentations for specialist, generalist and lay audiences how various problems may be stated, understood or solved
  • LO5. understand and appreciate the scientific methods and the range of anatomical imaging techniques available to conduct scientific enquiry, assess which anatomical imaging techniques would be the most appropriate to solve provided case studies and evaluate the usefulness of each imaging technique when answering different scientific questions, assessing the advantages and disadvantages of each technique
  • LO6. appreciate and appraise the place of anatomical imaging investigations in neuroscience, cardiology, osteology, pathology, and surgery and their impact in the community and society, their medical, educational, social and global importance, their potential, their uses and possible abuses
  • LO7. understand, articulate and value the unique privilege of learning about the structure and function of the human body through the gift of body donation and anatomical modelling and to show an understanding of the framework in which people may donate their remains and the moral, ethical and legal responsibilities that this entails
  • LO8. take responsibility for learning, including time management, and work independently as well as within a group
  • LO9. search for and integrate information derived from a number of sources (scientific journals, books, libraries, internet, databases) to appraise currently available information and resolve problems.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

The prac classes will be run with smaller student groups to enhance hand-on learning. To do this we will be timetabling repeat sessions of the practicals.

Work, health and safety

You must complete the ‘Our expectations, your obligations’ quiz to ensure you are aware of the safety requirements and standards of behaviour expected from you whilst you are in the Anatomy Laboratories.

Further information and the quiz will be available on Canvas.


The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.