Back when I was studying medicine and physiology, I remember the frustration of having to read and re-read the same paragraphs in my textbooks. I certainly wasn’t doing it for fun. I was doing it because I needed to cram before a test the next day and because my roommate was distracting me by talking on the phone in the next room. My scores ended up suffering -my parents were far from thrilled, and I felt pretty awful about it. The answers I needed were always just out of reach. I wasn’t sure if I was going to make it with my studies, so I had to look for an easier way to learn and remember human anatomy.
I read the university newspaper a week later and saw a letter that a fellow student had written in about audio mnemonics. I hadn’t heard of mnemonics before, so I did a quick Google search when I got back to my dorm. I had no idea there were memory aids out there for learning anatomy. That’s what a mnemonic is -a memorization aid. I decided to give them a go and listened to the audio mnemonics on my iPod before bed. It was the first night of study that didn’t leave me feeling lost, because I remembered the information the next day, and didn’t need to refer to any notes (or write any!).
I went to my next lecture, and the professor asked me to name the significant retroperitoneal organs. For once, I wasn’t horrified. One of the mnemonics I’d learned was “AC/DC Rocker Kids Party Down” (one of my favorites – I love AC/DC!), which helped me remember the answer.
Mnemonics like that are the easiest way I have found to learn human anatomy. You can listen to them anywhere without distraction, on your iPod, iPhone, MP3 player, or computer, and the idea behind them is to cut out the middle man (notes/textbooks), so you can talk anatomy right off the top of your head. More than worth a look if you are struggling like I was, or even if you want to brush up on your knowledge.