OHIO COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF)- West Virginia Northern Community College has brought on new technology to enhance learning and future growth.
A high quality, touch screen, virtual dissection table allows for students to examine real anatomy. West Virginia Northern is only the second school in the entire state to have this cutting-edge piece of equipment and among only 125 in the nation.
The Anatomage table is loaded with 4 different bodies donated to science, frozen without embalming fluid, which preserves true color and size of the tissues. This makes it easier for students to identify, rather than looking at a textbook or a cadaver, which is discolored, and well, smells like formaldehyde!
Bonnie Peterman, the Division Chair of Allied Health programs, told 7News the students can”dissect down, layer by layer through the bodies to get all the way down to the muscles, you can go to the bones, you can go to the organs, all the way down to the brain and spinal cord and then just like that you can put it all back again and start over, you can make cuts, like surgical cuts to where with a cadaver, once you’ve cut into the body, you can’t put it back to the way it was in the beginning.”
All health science programs and anatomy and physiology classes result in about 100 students using the table. Updates to the table are sent directly to it, and students get a chance at one-on- one and group work.
Rebecca Marple, a second-year radiology tech student, said ”it’s really beneficial to able to look through all of the parts of the body to see what’s inside and what the bones really look like it’s definitely helpful to be interactive and hands-on, it’s a lot different than just reading.”
This gives a more in-depth knowledge of the human structure, in addition to plants and animals, with several slides available at the touch of your fingertips.
Peterman added “it gives them a step above students at other institutions because they have this realization of what the body is like and then it’s better preparing them for their career so once they graduate they’re able to get that job immediately and be again a little more prepared than what other students may be.”
The college plans on getting more tables for both the Weirton and New Martinsville campuses.