Friday, August 26, 2011

Tips for choosing an anatomy lab group

One of the most important decisions you will make in your first year of med school is who you pick for your anatomy lab group. I recommend including the following people:

1) Yourself: You must be a part of your own lab group. While this might be the person you’d most like to avoid, this one is pretty much a given. Sorry.

2) A funny person: While I’d recommend a person who is funny as in hilarious, any kind of funny is all right, such as funny looking or funny talking. Even funny as in strange can be okay, as long as they provide you with some kind of entertainment to break up the interminable hours of anatomy lab.

3) A hot person: Much like the Sirens in the Odyssey, a hot person will lure the professors and TAs to your table and get you out of lab much faster. Also, when you inevitably get drunk and bang your anatomy partner, at least you’ll have banged someone hot.

4) A smart person: You need someone to actually do the dissection, right? Anyone with glasses will probably do.

People you want to avoid having in your lab group:

--Anyone who uses the phrase “I’m not here to make friends.”
--Anyone who smells worse than your cadaver.
--Anyone who refuses to give the cadaver a hilarious nickname.
--Future dermatologists


  1. Oh wow, that is such good advice it's not even funny.

  2. We get assigned to groups by height so the tables don't have to get moved up and down that much :-( Man, I hope there are some hot, funny, smart people who are also around 5'3" in this class.

  3. on the flip side - beware the flinger. my partner loved dissecting but was constantly flinging little bits of cadever everywhere. no fun to find in your hair 3 hours later.

  4. HI -- That is so revolting I don't even know what to say.

  5. I would definitely file this under the list of "things I wish I had known" during first year. One piece of advice that I followed was to not work in Anatomy with your best friends, because you're going to get sick of each other (... and you just met ... you still don't know whether these "friends" are serial killers or not ... ).

    I definitely appreciated the opportunity to make friendships with some new folks, and I would recommend that tidbit to first years again.


  6. At least you got to choose... In vet school, at least where I went to school, the class was split in half by alphabet so the lab was not as crowded and we were assigned partners based on alphabet. My immediate partner was a skinny blond who thought she was the smartest person in the class but was far from that rank. Our part-time partners were another skinny blond and a nice guy. The second skinny blond had a horrible attitude and actually approached the senior professor and tried to cuss him out for a missed question; it was embarrassing to be associated with her at all. The only decent one of the group was the guy who was very easy going and worked hard; he at least found my sarcastic, dry comments amusing. I was the only one with a sense of humor or the ability to set some boundaries in life. On the plus side, it helped when we got to pick surgery group partners in knowing who to avoid and if I ever work on a cruise ship, I should be proficient at any hands on work since the table rocked so much...

  7. We were assigned our anatomy lab group. The wanna be future dermatologist was absolutely the worst lab partner.

  8. It's not the smart person. It's the grind that wants to spend lunch hour dissecting out the fat and connective tissue so that your cadaver is "netter perfect" when you get back. They must be motivated and extremely patient.
    The other person you left out is the "skip to the part where it says 'cut'" to keep your group on track. This person should have some rudimentary reading comprehension such that you don't accidentally transect the structures you'll be tested on.