Overview of Trunk

This module aims to give you a solid grounding in the gross anatomical structure and function of the trunk (thorax, abdomen and pelvis). The module also aims to develop your teaching skills in a number of different environments.

A fundamental understanding of anatomical terminology should already have been mastered if this is not your first module. The systems covered are those relevant to the trunk: musculoskeletal, respiratory, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, endocrine, and nervous.

The general aims of this module are to:

  • deepen understanding of topographical, systematic, and developmental anatomy of the trunk
  • understand relevant clinical, functional and radiological anatomy of the trunk
  • develop skills in dissection and preparation of prosections
  • improve and consolidate skills in teaching, learning and communication with students
  • become competent in preparing teaching and learning materials and assessment processes
  • develop key study skills

Topics covered in this module include: ‚Äč

  • Vertebral column
  • Thoracic wall; mechanics of respiration
  • Airway, lungs, pleura
  • Heart, pericardium and great vessels
  • Mediastinum
  • Abdominal walls and contents
  • Abdominal vasculature and innervation
  • Pelvic and perineal walls and contents
  • Pelvic and perineal vasculature and innervation
  • Imaging

In addition, upon completion of this module you should be able to:

  1. Deliver and evaluate informative and engaging learning sessions and presentations on anatomy;
  2. Apply teaching skills to construct interactive tutorials and practical sessions;
  3. Develop and critically analyse course materials and learning aids;
  4. Design learning strategies including defining learning outcomes, core vs. non-core elements, etc.;
  5. Develop and appraise formative and summative assessment strategies.


The module will be assessed as follows:

Distance learning component

The module will be assessed by coursework at the trainee’s institution and by the reflective portfolio, submitted monthly to the ATP assessor. Coursework will include teaching and assessment assignments (e.g. devising examinations and criteria for marking essays), dissection assignments, and written reports from the trainee’s mentor indicating satisfactory completion of the distance learning element of the module. Satisfactory completion is also required of the reflective learning portfolio in order to attend the residential school. An electronic copy of the portfolio, including dissection photographs, is brought to the residential summer school for evaluation.

Residential summer school

The residential school will include continuous assessment through contribution to the workshops and formative knowledge testing, an assessed teaching session to evaluate the learnt teaching skills, and practical ‘spot’ tests with written and oral examination of knowledge and understanding of trunk anatomy.

Outcome of module

The module will be graded as fail, pass or distinction, leading to a Module Certificate (single module) or Programme Certificate (if all four modules are completed). The grade of the Programme Certificate will be calculated in proportion to the module weighting [see General Handbook].

 File: Overview of Trunk – ATP TW Amended 22.06.15