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Course Descriptions

Des Moines University’s master of science in anatomy program reflects the breadth of the science’s four major disciplines with depth in each and practical experiences in teaching and research.

Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.25 or above in the courses gross anatomy, cell and tissue biology, neuroanatomy and human development. Students must also maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above within the entire master of science curriculum and must successfully complete the comprehensive examination in anatomy.

Course NumberCourse Title and DescriptionCredit Hours
ANAT 1101AGross Anatomy
The gross anatomy course provides an in-depth study of the human body using cadaveric dissection.  Additional emphasis is placed on developmental anatomy and normal radiographic anatomy.  This course will include the anatomical relationships of the back, head, neck, thorax and abdomen.
4.0
ANAT 1101BGross Anatomy
The gross anatomy course provides an in-depth study of the human body using cadaveric dissection.  Additional emphasis is placed on developmental anatomy and normal radiographic anatomy.  This course will include the anatomical relationships of the pelvis, perineum, and the lower and upper limbs.
2.5
ANAT 1104Neuroanatomy
The structural and functional organization of the central nervous system is presented through lectures and laboratory/computer demonstrations on parts of the brain and spinal cord. The course covers the role of the brain and spinal cord in sensory perception and movement of the human body, including organs and behavioral responses. Wherever possible, case studies and appropriate syndromes are also presented.
2.0
BIOC 1102Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics
An introductory molecular description of biological structure and function. Normal metabolism and gene expression are given the major emphasis. Several common genetic diseases and metabolic disorders serve to contrast normal and perturbed human biochemistry, as well as demonstrate the clinical implications of human biochemistry.
4.5
HIST 1106Medical Cell and Tissue Biology
A comprehensive study of human cell biology, basic tissues and organ systems (e.g., cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, integumentary and lymphoid). Wherever possible, the study of histology is translated to clinical relevance. The course consists of regularly scheduled lectures, self-directed laboratory experiences, and collaborative learning exercises.
3.0
MPH O650Basic Statistics and Research
This is an introductory course that exposes the student to the use of statistical techniques for health care data analysis. Topics covered include research design, data acquisition, types of data, univariate and bivariate data summarization techniques, tabular and graphical data presentation, inferential techniques using different theoretical distributions and introduction to the use of multivariate statistical techniques. Students will learn to apply statistical techniques for decision making and/or research data analysis.
3.0
MSA 2A01Seminar in Anatomy I
Review, discussion and presentation of topics related to anatomy research and teaching. Prerequisites: ANAT 1101A, ANAT 1101B, ANAT 1104, HIST 1106, MSA 2A03
1.0
MSA 2A02Seminar in Anatomy II
Review, discussion and presentation of topics related to anatomy research and teaching. Prerequisites: ANAT 1101A, ANAT 1101B, ANAT 1104, HIST 1106, MSA 2A03
1.0
MSA 2A03Human Development
An introduction to the basic principles and concepts of human development from zygote to birth. Wherever possible, developmental processes will be translated to clinical relevance.
2.0
MSA 2A04Teaching in Anatomy
This course will allow dual-degree students to participate in laboratory and/or lecture instruction in one or more of the courses offered by the anatomy department. Prerequisites: ANAT 1101A, ANAT 1101B, ANAT 1104, HIST 1106, MSA 2A03
4.0
MSA 2A10Preparation for the Comprehensive Examination
This course prepares students for the final requirement of the anatomy graduate program, the comprehensive examination. Students will learn how to write comprehensive examination questions and grading rubrics to assess knowledge of the four core disciplines of gross anatomy, cell and tissue biology, neuroanatomy, and human development, and writing and critical thinking skills. Students will ultimately answer questions generated and evaluated by their peers as a way to expose and correct their weaknesses in knowledge of the core anatomic disciplines as well as written and critical thinking skills. At the end of the course, students will sit for mock comprehensive examinations to emulate the actual experience. Prerequisites: ANAT 1101A, ANAT 1101B, HIST 1106, MSA 2A03
2.0
MSA 2A14Teaching in Anatomy I
This course will allow primary degree students to participate in laboratory and/or lecture instruction in one or more of the courses offered by the anatomy department. Prerequisites: ANAT 1101A, ANAT 1101B, ANAT 1104, HIST 1106, MSA 2A03
2.0
MSA 2A18Advanced Dissections in Anatomy I
The course will allow students to dissect either the head and neck, back, thorax or abdomen of the human cadaver to further their knowledge of theses anatomical regions. Students, under supervision by the faculty, will prepare prosections of specific areas of the human cadaver, which will be presented to the first year DO/DPM class in the form of an oral presentation. Students will be assessed by the quality of their dissection and presentation. Prerequisite: ANAT 1101A, ANAT 1101B
1.0
MSA 2A24Teaching in Anatomy II
This course will allow primary degree students to participate in laboratory and/or lecture instruction in one or more of the courses offered by the anatomy department. Prerequisites: ANAT 1101A, ANAT 1101B, ANAT 1104, HIST 1106, MSA 2A03
2.0
MSA 2A28Advanced Dissections in Anatomy II
The course will allow students to dissect either the pelvis, perineum or upper and lower limbs of the human cadaver to further their knowledge of theses anatomical regions. Students, under supervision by the faculty, will prepare prosections of specific areas of the human cadaver, which will be presented to the first year DO/DPM class in the form of an oral presentation. Students will be assessed by the quality of their dissection and presentation. Prerequisite: ANAT 1101A, ANAT 1101B
1.0
PHYS 1116Medical Physiology
An introduction to basic principles of physiology from the cellular level (membrane potentials, receptor physiology, transport mechanisms) to organ systems (cardiovascular, nervous, respiratory, gastrointestinal, urinary-renal and endocrine). Emphasizes regulatory control interactions needed for a holistic understanding of homeostasis and pathophysiology of humans. The course uses lectures, laboratories and clinical scenarios to teach the control mechanisms. Physiology is an intermediate step in the progression of knowledge acquisition necessary for subsequent courses. Knowledge of anatomy and biochemistry is a prerequisite for understanding physiology and the application to pathophysiology.
6.5

Elective Courses

Course NumberCourse Title and DescriptionCredit Hours
INST 2003Cranial Nerves – A Case-Based Approach
This elective neuroanatomy course is designed to provide an understanding of the structure and function of the cranial nerves and the main neurological deficits resulting from cranial nerve lesions through clinical case discussions. It is assumed that the student taking this course will have a reasonable working knowledge of the structure and function of the cranial nerves. This is not a review course, but is intended to serve as a supplement to the DO-DPM Neuroanatomy course, DPT Neuroanatomy course and PA Neurologic System.
1.0
INST 2026Problem-Based Anatomy
The problem-based anatomy course is designed for students who desire a greater appreciation of the clinical relevance of anatomy and will be of educational utility to the student preparing for board examinations. The course will utilize lecture and discussion to guide students through selected clinical vignettes from the text, Problem-Based Anatomy. Each clinical vignette provides an educational framework in which the student can apply his or her anatomical knowledge to clinical situations. Another value-added attribute of the course is its integrated approach to the field of anatomy. Therefore, wherever appropriate the clinical vignettes will explore the various subdisciplines of anatomy. These include anatomic pathology, cell biology, embryology, gross anatomy, histology, neuroanatomy and radiologic anatomy. Prerequisite: Consent of Instructor
1.0
INST 2065Coronary Circulation
Understanding the burden of coronary arterial disease requires contextual knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the coronary circulation. Anatomically, this course will cover general concepts of blood vessel formation and remodeling, development of coronary vessels, the anatomy of the coronary vessels along with anomalies and collateral circulation. Physiologically, methods of measuring coronary blood flow and its regulation and distribution will be considered. Lastly, anatomic and physiologic adaptations related to aging, exercise and cardiac hypertrophy will be considered. Prerequisite: ANAT 1101A, ANAT 1101B, PHYS 1116
1.0
LAB 2115Basic Surgical and Medical Skills
Under the direction of surgical residents and surgical nurses, second-year medical students learn basic aseptic technique, clinical and operative skills. Skills emphasis includes suturing and knot tying, foley catheter and nasogastric tube insertion, peripheral vascular access, venous cut-down and catheterization, cricothyroidotomy, chest tube insertion, arterial puncture and central line placement. Student application of new psychomotor skills is provided through hands-on procedure and computer simulation labs.
1.0
MBS 1B04ACell Biology I
The course is designed to provide students with a foundational understanding of key concepts in the area of cell biology.  Prior to enrollment in the course, successful completion of an upper level biochemistry course is highly recommended.  This graduate level course is designed to explore the area of cell biology through presentations by content experts, the required text book, and primary literature.   The primary content areas covered will include: general laboratory techniques, genetics, molecular biology, transmembrane transport, and vesicular trafficking.  The course will serve as an important foundation in the biomedical sciences that will support students as they advance in their studies to their chosen area of specialty (Biochemistry, Microbiology, Physiology, and Pharmacology).
1.5
MBS 1B04BCell Biology II
The course is designed to provide students with a foundational understanding of key concepts in the area of cell biology.  Prior to enrollment in the course, successful completion of an upper level biochemistry course is highly recommended and successful completion of Cell Biology I.  This graduate level course is designed to explore the area of cell biology through presentations by content experts, the required text book, and primary literature.   The primary content areas covered will include: cell signaling, moving molecules, tissue structure, cell death, and cell division.  The course will serve as an important foundation in the biomedical sciences that will support students as they advance in their studies to their chosen area of specialty (Biochemistry, Microbiology, Physiology, and Pharmacology).
1.5
MICR 1103Microbiology and Immunology
Basic principles and clinical relevance of immune mechanisms and fundamentals of host-pathogen interactions are presented. In addition, the course offers an introduction to the various subdisciplines of microbiology, with emphasis on facts and principles pertinent to the broad requirements for understanding infectious diseases. Bacterial, mycotic, parasitic and viral pathogens are considered, with major emphasis on clinical presentation and pathogenic mechanisms. Laboratory integration focuses on the common diagnostic modalities pertinent to the various infectious agents.
6.0
MSA2A07Research
Research under the supervision of a graduate faculty member. Prerequisite: Consent of Instructor
1.0-2.0
MSA 2A11Tools for Teaching
This course will cover course design and revision, crafting a syllabus, application of adult learning principles to the design of presentations, effective use of learning psychology in the effective design and delivery of presentations, educational methods, execution of adult learning principles and assessing student learning outcomes.
1.0
MSA2A12Literature Review
This course will educate students in the conduct of a systematic literature review consistent with the competency standards recommended by the Association of College and Research Libraries. Specifically, students will learn to l) identify needed information; 2) acquire the information efficiently and effectively; 3) critically read and evaluate the information; 4) effectively organize and communicate (orally and in writing) the information; and 5) legally and ethically acquire and use the information.
3.0
PATH 1109General Pathology
Develops a basis for the biological interpretation of disease processes by integrating the changes in structure and function associated with diseases and the relationship of symptoms to lesions.
2.5