The Future of Anatomy Education

The Anatomical Science Education PhD program admitted its first two graduate students, Nancy Adams and Ashley Walker, in the fall of 2021.  During their first semester, Nancy and Ashley were able to explore in-depth the complex systems of the human body using real cadavers in the gross anatomy laboratory.  The augmented reality laboratory let them experience the exciting future of where advanced visual technology and teaching intersect.  Under the mentoring of program director Dr. Kyle Rarey and other faculty within the College of Medicine and College of Education, we are excited to be part of shaping the bright future of our two first graduate students.


Upon arrival in Gainesville, I realized that this opportunity was a game-changer! I had been teaching Human A & P at community colleges which focused more on physiology and utilized typical plastic models, individual organs, and 2D imaging. Seeing the actual structures in the medical anatomy lab is teaching me the intricate relationships among the different body systems and clarifying even more the functional inter-relatedness of the body organization.

The ASE program is also about educational research. I am seeing first-hand the cutting edge of educational technology development and research in the College of Education, such as Artificial Intelligence, Eye-tracking, Virtual Reality, and Gamification.
I hope that I don’t die before I get to teach anatomy again!


Continuing my learning and growing in the anatomical sciences was my goal when applying for the program. I have always enjoyed learning about the human body, so why not share my love of anatomy with others in the form of teaching. After teaching at community college for a little while, I understood that there was still more for me to learn. So here I am in the ASE program at UF!

The ASE program has been better than I could have ever imagined. Delving into the intricacies of the human body and exploring the vast array of educational research has been quite an adventure. Also, being able to learn and shadow some of the best professors in the field is unparalleled. It has been a blessing to not only learn from scholars in the College of Medicine but also from those in the College of Education. I am excited for what the future holds!