New models improve diversity of medical teaching materials
New anatomy models with darker coloured skin tones have been installed by the University of Plymouth to improve the diversity of its medical teaching materials.
Thought to be the first work of its kind in the country, the initiative was led by Dr Siobhan Moyes, the University’s Lead in Anatomy, who wanted to make improvements post-lockdown in 2020. Working with model provider, Adam,Rouilly, she initiated a programme to improve awareness of the availability and anatomical diversity of the models to ensure an inclusive and empowering student experience.
She said: 
“Post lockdown and after the international campaign for Black Lives Matter, noticing the lack of diversity in our anatomy resources was a real shock for me. Ultimately our students are going to treat people from all backgrounds and ethnicities, so why were our teaching materials primarily Euro-centric? I was also upset to think that our diverse population of students might not feel represented by the models they saw in our teaching.
“When I struggled to find high-quality diverse anatomy models on the market, I approached our provider, Adam,Rouilly, to discuss improvements to the visibility and availability of models with different skin tones. They have been so receptive and collaborative through the whole process, it’s been a real team effort.”
This collaboration has resulted in the international promotion of the availability of anatomical models with darker coloured skin tones. 
While Peninsula Medical School was the first to explore including these models, other anatomy departments have also placed orders, showing the desire to increase diversity in anatomy teaching. 
Find out more about the facilities and anatomy teaching in Peninsula Medical School
<p>New diverse anatomy models&nbsp;</p>
The University’s Peninsula Dental School, Peninsula Medical School and School of Biomedical Sciences have together achieved their Athena Swan Silver award, committed to equality across their operations. Part of the award submission saw staff commit to an equality pledge – a short, measurable statement that showed how each individual would build equality into their working life, and Dr Moyes made hers about improving diversity in anatomy. 
She said: 
“The pledge related to both the resources we use and the curriculum we teach, and I’m delighted we’ve secured £20,000 of funding to buy a range of torsos and other anatomical models with darker coloured skin. There’s certainly the potential to diversify further, and we’ve dedicated resource to ensure that this happens. 
"We’re also ensuring our teaching doesn’t inadvertently associate certain pathologies with certain genders, so speaking in non-binary terms when gender is irrelevant.”
<p><a href="">Dr Chloe Milsom</a>,&nbsp;Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences (Education), Peninsula Medical School</p>
Dr Chloe Milsom, Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences and Lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in the University’s Peninsula Medical School, said: 
“We are so proud of Siobhan’s proactive approach to improving the diversity of materials in anatomy teaching. Equality often starts with stepping back and realising that change needs to happen, so for her to do this is a truly valued step.
“It’s so important to embrace and embed equality, diversity and inclusion in higher education, healthcare and beyond – and it’s something we’re really proud of here at Plymouth.” 
Jenny Whitebread, Adam,Rouilly Director, added: 
“As medical education evolves we continually look for ways of improving our product offerings to enhance student learning outcomes. Collaborating with Siobhan has enabled us to embrace this need for greater awareness in equality, diversity and inclusivity in anatomy teaching.” 

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