8th in the UK

Bristol is ranked 8th in the UK for Anatomy and Physiology (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2023).

Practical experience

Applied Anatomy students get plenty of hands-on dissection experience of human and animal specimens.

Thriving community

The University of Bristol Anatomy Society lets students share their passion for anatomy through community outreach projects, social events and trips.

Applied Anatomy courses for 2025

Single Honours

Applied Anatomy at Bristol

Anatomy is the study of structure from cell to tissue to whole organism. Applied anatomy examines relationships between structure and function. This practical, hands-on course will give you a clear, three-dimensional, internal model of the anatomy of the human and animal body.

The UK's only School of Anatomy here at Bristol provides anatomy training for medical, dental and veterinary science undergraduates together in one facility. The expertise of teaching staff and wealth of varied resources across these subject specialities offer a learning experience unique to Bristol.

The school is home to a custom built Imaging Suite, providing students with the opportunity to study normal and abnormal tissue via a variety of diagnostic imaging modalities, the underlying principles of techniques and further applications.

Bristol offers so much, especially when it comes to dissection experience. Not many students get to learn anatomy by dissection - we were really lucky to be able to learn in this unique way at the School of Anatomy.

Tilly, BSc Applied Anatomy

Career prospects

Students looking at X-ray scans.

With its emphasis on applied learning and professional development, Applied Anatomy appeals to employers and provides you with a springboard for a variety of careers.

Our graduates enter a range of professions including research, education and graduate entry schemes or, with further study, professional programmes such as medicine, veterinary medicine or dentistry.

In the public sector, life sciences graduates are in demand in research institutes, government departments and the National Health Service. There is also increasing demand for life scientists to contribute to the public understanding of science as journalists and information and liaison officers.

Course structure

A teacher points at an anatomical illustration.

A deep understanding and appreciation of body structure can only be achieved by a hands-on approach including dissection. Practical-based teaching, involving dissection and study of human and animal specimens, is a large component of the course.

The first year of the course introduces the principles of comparative anatomy and relates the structure to the function of major mammalian body systems.

The second year covers detailed medical and veterinary anatomy with clinical relevance and application throughout. The dissection unit is an integral part of the course that allows you to specialise in medical or veterinary anatomy.

In the third year, a seminar-based course lets you get actively involved in expert-led discussion of the latest anatomical research. A highlight of this year is an original research project, which can be a clinically related anatomical investigation, a laboratory-based scientific study, or anatomically themed educational research.

Expert support

Students working in a laboratory class.

The Vesalius Clinical Training Unit (VCTU), which is at the forefront of postgraduate applied and clinical anatomy training and research, is part of the school.

Clinical experts and allied health professionals from the unit enrich our students' learning experience and collaborate with final-year research projects.

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