Advanced Surgical Anatomy Postgraduate Training Course

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The course has Australian Orthopaedic Association (AOA) Approval

The Advanced Surgical Anatomy Postgraduate Training Course is designed to provide supervised comprehensive cadaver dissection training and topographical studies in Anatomy to the standard required for the General Surgical Sciences Examination (Anatomy) of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.

The course will be delivered by the Discipline of Anatomy, (School of Biomedical Sciences and Pharmacy, University of Newcastle), in collaboration with the Hunter New England Local Health District Surgical Training Network.

The following learning modalities will be utilized:

  1. Distance learning (prescribed readings and formative multiple-choice questions (MCQs).
  2. A one-day induction to the course, anatomical dissection and commencement of lower limb dissection (weekend 1).
  3. Four intensive topic based workshop weekends (weekends 2 – 5; 16 hours per weekend). Each weekend will provide learning opportunities utilizing whole body dissection, prosected specimens, osteology and relevant medical imaging.
  4. Detailed instruction provided throughout the course. Instruction will be from both clinical anatomists and specialist surgeons.
  5. In-class topic based multiple-choice exams. These exams will be conducted on each of the four intensive topic based weekends (weekends 2-5).
  6. Final formal examinations. A sixth (6th) and final weekend will be dedicated for revision and final formal examinations (oral and a practical identification examinations).

The course has Australian Orthopaedic Association (AOA) Approval

The course will provide 20 units of elective study that may be credited towards the Master of Clinical Epidemiology conducted at the University of Newcastle.

Course Objectives

The postgraduate training course will provide students with:

  • A sound knowledge of regional anatomy appropriate for safe and competent surgical practice;
  • A sound knowledge of clinically important developmental and functional anatomy, and anatomical variations related to the areas studied;
  • An ability to identify structures and their anatomical relationships in prosected specimens and associated imaging;
  • An ability to communicate anatomical concepts clearly, precisely and concisely.

Course Assessments

  1. Topic-based multiple-choice examinations;
  2. Oral (viva voce) examination;
  3. Practical identification examination.

Assumed Knowledge / Course Prerequisite

This course is designed to provide advanced professional training for junior doctors. Completion of an undergraduate medical degree such as a MBBS or an equivalent qualification is a prerequisite for undertaking the Advanced Surgical Anatomy Postgraduate Training Course.

Weekend dates

Saturday - April 18th  (Introduction to course and to dissection)
Saturday and Sunday - May 23th and 24th (Lower Limb Module)
Saturday and Sunday  - June 20th and 21st (Upper limb module)
Saturday and Sunday - July 18th and 19th (Thorax, abdomen, pelvis module)
Saturday and Sunday  - August 15th and 16th (Head, anterior neck and CNS module)
Saturday and Sunday - September 12th and 13th (Revision and formal examinations)

Contact Hours

The postgraduate training course will consist of 80 contact hours and 200 hours of self directed learning.

Course Duration

The course will be run over six weekends commencing with an initial introductory day (Saturday only), followed by four topic based weekends and a final exam weekend (Saturday and Sunday delivery). The course will therefore be conducted once a month for a six-month period.

Please note the substantial time commitment that this course involves.

The course will be conducted in the Anatomy Laboratory in the Medical Sciences West Building (MSW - level 3), University of Newcastle, Callaghan Campus, University Drive, Callaghan, NSW 2308.

Course Meals

Morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea will be provided on each day of the course. For specific dietary requirements please contact Josephine Smith.

Application Closing date: Friday February 13th, 2015

Please Note: Places in the 2015 course will be limited to 24 candidates.


An application process is required. Consideration will be given to applicants intending to undertake the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons Surgical Sciences Examination in 2015 or 2016.

Notification of acceptance into the course and a copy of the detailed course outline will be sent to all successful applicants with a request for payment.

N.B. In Step 2 of the Online Application Form, please upload your current CV and complete the question ' What do you hope to gain from this course?'

Terms & Conditions

  1. An administration fee of $250 will be deducted from any refunds. No refunds will be made under any circumstances unless cancellation is received in writing more than five (5) working days prior to the course commencement.
  2. ASAPTC reserves the right to cancel a program and will endeavour to provide participants with as much notice as possible. Upon cancellation, any fees already paid by the participant will be fully refunded.
  3. Full payment must be made prior to commencement of the course.

About the Course Convenor

Josephine Smith has been teaching Anatomy in the School of Biomedical Sciences and Pharmacy, University of Newcastle, since 2006. Josephine has extensive experience in course coordination, lecturing, anatomy demonstration, student supervision (Year 5 Medicine Special Studies Option - anatomical dissection), and the provision of continuing education opportunities in Anatomy for professional groups (Hunter New England Health Surgical Training Programme, Speech Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, Physiotherapists and Podiatrists).

Contact for Further Information

Josephine Smith
MPhty, DipGrad Physiology, Dip Phty

Lecturer in Anatomy,
Discipline of Anatomy,
School of Biomedical Sciences & Pharmacy
Life Sciences Building, Room 2-37
University of Newcastle
Callaghan

Phone: 02 4921 6310
Email: Josephine.Smith@newcastle.edu.au