Virtual laboratory manual for microscopic anatomy

Anat Rec B New Anat. 2005 May;284(1):17-21. doi: 10.1002/ar.b.20058.


Using digital technology, we have assembled a virtual laboratory manual (VLM) that is a Web-based copy of our traditional laboratory manual. The VLM is used to enhance traditional laboratory instruction in histology. For each reference in the VLM to either a histological slide or an electron micrograph (EM), hyperlinks are included that download digital images derived from the students' glass slide sets or scanned EMs. The VLM serves as an atlas of digital images for concurrent study of similar sections by light microscopy during laboratory sessions. In addition, students can review the images from the VLM at remote locations. We have encouraged continued use of light microscopes in laboratories by basing the majority of practical examination identifications on analysis of marked histological slides that require students to use their own microscopes. The VLM provides the convenience of a Web-based resource with high-quality images, yet allows retention of the many excellent traditional aspects of our course. An example of a VLM laboratory on epithelium is available online (

MeSH terms

  • Computer-Assisted Instruction*
  • Education, Medical, Undergraduate*
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Histology / education*
  • Humans
  • Manuals as Topic*
  • Ohio