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Teacher-Recommended Collection: Nervous system resources for a pre-nursing anatomy & physiology course

View Resources Scroll down to view the resources in this collection. APS
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Description Collection Description
This collection focuses on resources that can be used in addition to traditional lectures during teaching of anatomy and physiology of the nervous system.

Describe how this collection was used.
I use the activities in this collection in-between lecturing. I usually lecture for 25-30 minutes then stop for either a video or a quick clicker question (we do not have clickers, but it is just to check comprehension). The videos and animations that come with the textbook (I use Marieb's) are pretty good, but some of the videos from Resource #1 would be fitting here (HHMI videos, especially the one about synapses and APs). After covering neurotransmitters, I show then Party Mouse to connect directly the effects of drugs with what they learned before. The cranial nerves and neuroexamination resources help after covering cranial nerves and reflexes. The videos could be the base of an active assignment (maybe one group could cover one nerve and demonstrate assessment?). This would be an in-class activity. Both cases including spinal cord damage can be used after covering spinal nerves and spinal cord traumas. It gives them the chance to see a practical application of what they just learned. I use the Mini cases as a group presentation project. This is a good one after finishing CNS and PNS= I divide students in groups, and give them one case to each. I try to take away the one with the TIA as it is usually too easy. Let them discuss at the end of class, then they have another chance to discuss in class (and with me), and then they present their results to the whole class. After each class then one can wrap up showing the different causes for motor disorders and the regions/pathways affected. I use the ANS questions after the ANS lecture, to clarify some of the concepts.

Describe who used this collection (classroom, laboratory, education level, etc).
These activities are mainly in-class activities, either in interrupted lecturing or as dry lab activities. The level of these resources is appropriate for undergrad/allied health/pre-nursing students.

Describe how this collection works.
This collection illustrates and clarifies concepts, as well as allow students apply concepts and connect them to real life situations.

Please enter suggestions for colleagues.
Case studies can be tweaked depending on the level of the class, number of students, and available time. This includes changing or omitting certain questions and adding others, or changing the submission. As most case studies and their answers can be found online, i do not show the title of the case study and give students hard copies.

Type of Resource Annotated Collection
Format Multiple Formats
Ana Maria Barral, National University
Grade/Age Levels Undergraduate lower division (Grades 13-14)
Undergraduate upper division (Grades 15-16)
Professional (degree program)
Learning Time 2-3 hours
Language English
Type of Review Reviewed by Partner Organization

Resources in Collection
Click on any teaching resource's title for detailed information.
Web Site Links
Mini Cases in Movement Disorders
Original description: This collection of six short cases focuses on brain areas and neurotransmitters involved in the control of movement. Students are divided into working groups and given one or more of the case descriptions. Each scenario depicts a breakdown in the motor system that can be traced (at least in part) to some brain area or areas. Useful for a variety of courses, including physiological psychology and neurobiology, these cases are intended to give students an opportunity to apply knowledge gained from readings and lectures to real-life situations inspired by patient cases described in the literature.
Mouse Party
I use this resource after explaining the different neurotransmitters and their functions. By using different drugs as examples, and through an interactive and fun interface, this resource engages students and also clarifies in a graphic manner some of the mechanisms of action.
Tutorial: Autonomic Nervous System
I have used this powerpoint presentation with ANS questions as a quick check after ANS lecture.


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This collection is useful for many different groups, although I wasn't able to use all of them for any one course - Party Mouse and some of the case studies (ie. A Case of Spinal Cord Injury, Brain vs. Spinal Cord) I found to be perfect for my intro A&P students, while the cranial nerve case studies were very useful as lecture supplements for my upper year human anatomy course. You do have to register for a free account to access some items, but it's quick and easy (and worth it!).

—Nicolette Richardson, York University

I love this collection because there are lots of case studies!  I think they would be more appropriate for my second-year pathophysiology students who have completed a first year anatomy and physiology course.

I loved the Party Mouse Animation/Game.  It uses the effects of drugs such as cocaine, marajuana and alcohol to explain the action of a number of neurotransmitters in the brain.  

I like the explanation as to how the activities in the collection were incorporated into the course, and whether or not they were used in the classroom, during group work, or given as a take home assignment.

There are a couple of problems I had with this collection.  One would have to register for an AAMC account to access the last item (tutorial on the autonomic NS).  Also, the title of the collection is misleading.  I didn’t think it would apply to my second-year nursing pathophysiology students, but it does!  I’m glad I checked.

—Julie Dais, Okanagan College