Ontology-driven Education: Teaching Anatomy with Intelligent 3D Games on the Web
Nilsen, Trond Tamaio
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Human anatomy is a challenging and intimidating subject whose understanding is essential to good medical practice, taught primarily using a combination of lectures and the dissection of human cadavers. Lectures are cheap and scalable, but do a poor job of teaching spatial understanding, whereas dissection lets students experience the body’s interior first-hand, but is expensive, cannot be repeated, and is often imperfect. Educational games and online learning activities have the potential to supplement these teaching methods in a cheap and relatively effective way, but they are difficult for educators to customize for particular curricula and lack the tutoring support that human instructors provide. I present an approach to the creation of learning activities for anatomy called ontology-driven education, in which the Foundational Model of Anatomy, an ontological representation of knowledge about anatomy, is leveraged to generate educational content, model student knowledge, and support learning activities and games in a configurable web-based educational framework for anatomy.