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ERIC Number: EJ1405669
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2024
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1935-9772
EISSN: EISSN-1935-9780
First Patient Project: Engaging Pathology through the Donor Dissection Experience and Its Role in Professionalism
Kyle A. Robertson; Jason M. Organ; Michael Yard; Jessica N. Byram
Anatomical Sciences Education, v17 n1 p199-212 2024
The peer-reviewed anatomical education literature thoroughly describes the benefits and drawbacks of donor dissection. Gross anatomy laboratory environments utilizing donor dissection are generally considered to be a premier environment where students foster non-traditional discipline-independent skills (NTDIS), including the acquisition of professionalism, empathy, resilience, emotional intelligence, and situational awareness. Therefore, this IRB-approved study explored the impact of a formal humanism and pathology thread, the first patient project (FPP), on the personal and professional development of pre-professional undergraduate students in a gross anatomy dissection-based course. Five reflections from each student were collected across four cohorts (n = 74 students, 370 reflections). A post-course questionnaire collected data on student perceptions of the project. The framework method was used to analyze reflection and free response data and descriptive statistics were performed on Likert-style items using Excel. Three themes were identified to encompass the impacts of the FPP on professional development and include: "Socialization" (through collective dissection experience and pathology), "Humanistic Qualities" (respect for the donor and their history, and introspection), and "Content and Skills" (technical and NTDIS, anatomical knowledge). The end of course FPP survey was completed by 29 students across three cohorts (65%) and their perspectives were generally favorable regarding the promotion of respect, empathy, and humanization of their donors. This study underscores the value of incorporating humanism, pathology, and reflection, facilitated through formal curriculum for pre-professional undergraduate students. It provides evidence of the positive impact on their personal and professional development, supporting the integration of NTDIS in curricula across various disciplines.
Wiley. Available from: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030. Tel: 800-835-6770; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A