Anatomy and Histology

UNDERGRADUATE MAJOR

Anatomy and histology is the study of the structure of living things. Your introduction to the area is through the study of cell structure (histology) and the basic tissue of mammalian biology and musculo-skeletal anatomy. In senior year we divide your studies into four disciplines. You will study topographical anatomy (bones, muscles, nerves, arteries,veins); neuroanatomy (anatomy and organisation of the nervous system); histology (microscopic anatomy of cells and tissues) and embryology (development of an embryo from fertilisation to fetus stage). Dissection plays a part.

For more information on the program structure and content, view the Science Undergraduate Handbook.

Major outline

FIRST YEAR
The study of anatomy and histology does not begin until second year. In first year, students are advised to study maths, biology and chemistry and one other subject of choice.

SECOND YEAR
Anatomy and histology begins with the study of cell structure and the basic tissues of the mammalian body. In semester two, the unit covers musculoskeletal anatomy and compares living humans and apes with fossil hominids.

Concepts in Neuroanatomy - a broad introduction into the mystery and wonder of the brain - is also offered.

THIRD YEAR
The units offered by anatomy and histology in third year include topographical anatomy, neuroscience and advanced neuroscience, microscopy and histochemistry, transmission and scanning electron microscopy, cells and development, forensic osteology.

EXAMPLE UNITS:
Forensic Osteology
Neuroscience: Motor Systems and Behaviour
Cranial and Cervical Anatomy (Advanced)
Cellular and Developmental Neuroscience
Microscopy and Histochemistry
Visceral Anatomy

Course accreditation

Graduates who hold a major in anatomy and histology are eligible for membership of the Australian Academy of Anatomical Studies.

Graduate opportunities

Science graduates who major in anatomy and histology are employed in universities, the CSIRO, hospitals and pathology laboratories, often specialising in electron microscopy or histochemistry. Recent graduates have also become teachers or are employed in the scientific equipment industry.

Further study for major

Rich opportunities for honours and postgraduate research are available in a variety of anatomy and histology related fields including the biology of the retina, the organisation of the visual pathways, the pathways underlying pain, the formation of brain circuitry, the fundamentals of embryonic development, the causes of developmental abnormalities and the molecular basis of muscle contraction.

The Discipline of Anatomy and Histology maintains a large catalogue of specimens for education and research. Research tools include a high-resolution transmission electron microscope and confocal microscope and excellent specimen preparation facilities. Other facilities include automated electrophoresis, high-pressure liquid chromatography, standard histology, immuno-cytochemistry, in-situ hybridisation and surgery. The discipline also houses major museums such as the JT Wilson Museum of Anatomy and the JL Shellshear Museum.

Related subject areas

Anatomy and Histology
Biochemistry
Biology
Chemistry
Cell Pathology
Immunobiology
Neuroscience
Physiology

Our courses that offer this major