ANAT2341 Embryology 2013

From Embryology


The course coordinator is Dr Stephen Palmer, my office is located in Wallace Wurth East, second floor room 234.

ANAT2341 is a second semester course commencing in August 2013.

Welcome to Embryology in 2013 and thank you for choosing this exciting topic! In the past 20 years as a researcher I have seen enormous changes in our understanding of this subject and the methods we employ to further our knowledge in this field. This topic and its associated methodologies are now found at the core of scientific investigations and key to current medical research.

This page will introduce the current course and link to related online resources (bookmark this as your start page). This is a new online resource, content and links will be added during your current course. Feel free to explore the site and prepare yourself for the upcoming course by some background reading.

Course Links

These course links are currently to draft 2013 course materials.

Human Carnegie stage 1-23.jpg

The first 8 weeks of human embryological development.

Course details

Summary of the Course

This course will introduce embryological development as a major topic within medical sciences. Students completing this course will have a broad understanding of: human development, some animal models of development and current related research topics. Experts and researchers from within the field contribute to the current course.

Aims of the Course

  1. This course will enable students to explore and gain further understanding of embryology through the investigation of development in both humans and animal models with a direct emphasis of their application to emerging research and reproductive technologies.
  2. This course will enable students to broadly understand abnormalities in development and current applications to medical research.

Student learning outcomes

At the conclusion of this course the student will be able to:

  1. Describe the key events in early and systematic embryological development.
  2. Apply developmental theory to abnormalities of development and current medical research techniques.
  3. Complete tasks in scientific communication either online, written and by oral presentation.
  4. Work in small groups to research a specific topic and deliver a group project.

Graduate Attributes

The students will be encouraged to develop the following Graduate Attributes by undertaking the selected activities and knowledge content. These attributes will be assessed within the prescribed assessment tasks.

At the conclusion of this course the student will be able to:

  1. Investigate embryological development by scholarly enquiry of research literature.
  2. Apply developmental theory to anatomical development.
    1. understanding of their discipline in its interdisciplinary context.
  3. Undertake basic research by applying analytical and critical thinking.
    1. capable of independent and self-directed practice.
    2. able to apply their knowledge and skills to solving problems.
  4. Create group projects that demonstrate
    1. information gathering.
    2. effective oral and written communication.
    3. initiative and collaborative work.

Rationale for the inclusion of content and teaching approach

Medicine computer lab

This course includes content to enable students to develop communications skills and practices that will enhance their development as a medical researcher.

Teaching strategies

Each week 2 lectures will introduce topics of early embryological development and later focus upon systematic development. Laboratories are designed to complement the course lecture material, allow individual and small group work and also include topics related to specific researchers within the school. Laboratories also include time for tutorials in group project work and for to discuss and co-ordinate the group project.


There are three main forms of course assessment tasks shown below.

Assessment task
Learning outcomes assessed
Graduate attributes assessed
Due date
Individual Tasks Short answer and/or multiple choice 20 % Critical thinking and initiative, information literacy Scholarly enquiry of research literature Throughout the semester
Group Project 3000 word referenced review with figures and mid-semester oral presentation 30 % Information literacy and effective communication Initiative and collaborative work Mid-semester presentation and week 11 submission of review
Theory Examination 2 hours 50 % Engagement with the relevant disciplinary knowledge in its interdisciplinary context Apply developmental theory to anatomical development Within the S2 exam period 8th – 26th Nov

For more information see also UNSW Guidelines on Learning

Examiner The course organizer (Dr Stephen Palmer) will be the examiner. The course assessor is Prof Edna Hardeman.

Theory examination will be an internal exam within the session two exam period and will conform to University examination guidelines. Students absent through illness or misadventure should immediately contact UNSW Student Central. For more information see UNSW A-Z Guide Special Consideration.

Supplementary examinations will only be offered if the student is unable to attend the final examination for medical or misadventure reasons.

Assignment and Lab Project Dates Current planned submission and project assessment dates are shown in the printed course schedule and timetable.

Submission of Assessment Tasks Student individual tasks will be set and submitted on a regular basis during laboratories. Oral presentation of group projects will be during weeks 8 and 9. Group project reports are due on the Wednesday of week 11. Late submissions will be penalized by 5%/ day late.

Academic honesty and plagiarism

Plagiarism is using the words or ideas of others and presenting them as your own. Plagiarism is a type of intellectual theft. It can take many forms, from deliberate cheating to accidentally copying from a source without acknowledgement. With regard to the group project work please note the statement:

"Claiming credit for a proportion of work contributed to a group assessment item that is greater than that actually contributed;"

Note - All student online contributions are recorded by date, time, and the actual contributed content.

Academic Misconduct carries penalties. If a student is found guilty of academic misconduct, the penalties include warnings, remedial educative action, being failed in an assignment or excluded from the University for two years. The University has also adopted an educative approach to plagiarism and has developed a range of resources to support students. For more information see:


Either of the textbooks listed below are recommended for this course and page references to both are given in each lecture. Both textbooks available at campus bookshop. There are additional embryology textbooks that can also be used, consult course organizer. See also Embryology Textbooks

The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology (8th ed.)

The Developing Human, 9th edn.jpg Keith L. Moore, T.V.N. Persaud, Mark G. Torchia. (2011). The Developing Human: clinically oriented embryology (9th ed.). Philadelphia: Saunders. Description: xix, 540 p. p. : ill., ports. Publisher: Philadelphia, PA : Saunders/Elsevier, c2013. ISBN: 9781437720020 (pbk.) NLM Unique ID: 101561564

The following chapter links only work with a UNSW connection.

Larsen’s Human Embryology (4th ed.)

Larsen's human embryology 4th edn.jpg Schoenwolf, G.C., Bleyl, S.B., Brauer, P.R. and Francis-West, P.H. (2009). Larsen’s Human Embryology (4th ed.). New York; Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.

The following chapter links only work with a UNSW connection and can also be accessed through this UNSW Library connection.

Publisher Links: The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology | Larsen’s Human Embryology

Course evaluation and development

 Periodically student evaluative feedback on the course is gathered, using among other means, UNSW Course and Teaching Evaluation and Improvement (CATEI) Process. Student feedback is taken seriously, and continual course improvements are based in part on such feedback. For example, previous student feedback on lecture slides availability and online materials navigation has led to changes in both lecture presentations and development of a new online resource with better navigation and access.

Other information to be included

Student Risk Assessment