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Brighton & Sussex Medical School

Anatomy Laboratory

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Anatomy laboratory

Located in the Medical Teaching Building on the University of Sussex campus, the Anatomy Laboratory is an integral part of learning at BSMS. It is also utilised by the Universities of Brighton and Sussex’s health professional programmes, and hosts a considerable number of external events including surgical training courses.

The Anatomy Laboratory is licensed under The Human Tissue Act 2004, regulated by the Human Tissue Authority. The licence holder is the Registrar of the University of Sussex and the day-to-day responsibilities for the licence reside with the 'Designated Individual' (Dr Claire F. Smith, Head of Anatomy).




At BSMS, anatomy is taught using a wide range of teaching and learning methods.

Within years 1 and 2, undergraduate students dissect specified regions of the human body aided by structured guides. They gain a complete understanding of the relationship between structure and function within the body and how such knowledge forms the basis of clinical medicine. In year 2, students progress to studying more intricate details of the body, learning from expertly prepared, prosected specimens.

Living anatomy is a very important part of the course, with students learning the basis of clinical examination from the knowledge they gain of important surface landmarks. We link anatomy with modern imaging techniques, with students utilising portable ultrasound machines to understand how anatomical structures can be viewed clinically.

Throughout the teaching of anatomy, physicians, surgeons and radiologists participate in lectures, tutorials, clinical symposia and practical classes, enabling students to observe the strong underpinning of clinical medicine with the basic medical sciences.

In partnership with Nuffield Health Brighton, our anatomy demonstrators are qualified doctors currently training in surgery or radiology. They work with our students both within the dissecting room and in small group tutorials, bringing their clinical experiences to the course.

At BSMS, we believe that anatomy learning is not just limited to formal teaching sessions. We offer a range of technology enhanced learning opportunities, including access to 3D printed material, in-house produced Vodcasts, and access to leading commercial software.


Anatomy features in a number of postgraduate courses, including the MSc in Cardiology and MSc in Radiology. Many leading consultant surgeons, radiologists and anesthetists from the Trust Hospitals also utilise our facilities for surgical courses and research projects related to anatomical examination to confirm, or even refute, dogma in surgical practice.

Read more about our postgraduate courses >


Virtual tour

Explore our anatomy laboratory and take our virtual tour.

View here >


"The anatomy teaching is one of the best aspects of the course. Our lecturers are amazing and dissections help you to appreciate what you are learning in a way that no text-book can teach. Regular imaging practicals also give us a taster of anatomy's relevance."

- Mark Abel, postgraduate student

Become an anatomy demonstrator

Anatomy demonstrators are essential members of our teaching team and play an important role in our students’ development through guidance, support and delivery of high quality anatomical teaching.

We expect all demonstrators to be enthusiastic teachers, good communicators, have excellent interpersonal skills and possess the ability to effectively and cooperatively work within a team. The anatomy demonstrator role is an attractive 12-month fixed term post for those wishing to develop teaching, clinical and research skills. The post offers mentorship through MRCS examinations and the opportunity to study for a fully funded Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) in Medical Education.

Read more about Medical Education >

Post Title: Medical Anatomy Demonstrator
School/department: Nuffield Health, Montefiore Hospital, Brighton and Sussex Medical School, 
Hours: Full time
Contract: fixed term for 12 months 
Salary: £27,000 plus study budget and end of year bonus

Applications are invited for the posts of Medical Anatomy demonstrators. These fixed term posts are available with the fantastic collaboration between top private health providers and BSMS. 

The posts are aligned to either of the following Private Health Care Providers where the individuals will work as Resident Medical Officers (RMO): Nuffield Health Brighton Hospital, a 56 bed acute private hospital or The Montefiore Hospital in Hove, a 36 bed acute private hospital.

RMOs are required to also take part in a 1:5 rotation as Resident Medical Officer at their respective hospital, covering day or night shifts in accordance with the working time directive. RMOs will be allocated to the employer based on subject speciality. Successful candidates will liaise with all consultant users (most of whom work within Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust) and will have a fantastic opportunity to see a wide variety of surgical procedures and techniques. Post holders will also support the nursing team and be a pivotal link between consultant and patient in all specialties, including urology inc. gender reassignment surgery (Nuffield Hospital only), gynaecology, ENT, ophthalmology, general surgery and orthopaedics. As a key member of the team, they will be given a private en-suite room, access to the internet for study and communication purposes, free meals and free parking whilst on duty. Opportunities to learn and develop skills within the successful candidate’s chosen area of interest will be strongly encouraged out of hours or, as able, during shifts by arranging theatre sessions with the support of the consultant users. The successful candidate will also be awarded a professional study budget of £700 towards the Basic Surgical Skills course or other additional study requirements to improve their log book of surgical skills.

When not undertaking RMO duties you will work as an essential member of Brighton and Sussex Medical School teaching team. You will play an important role in our students’ development through guidance, support and delivery of high quality medical and anatomical teaching. We expect all RMOs to be enthusiastic teachers, good communicators, have excellent interpersonal skills and possess the ability to effectively and cooperatively work within a team. The post offers mentorship through MRCS or other examinations and the opportunity to study for a fully funded Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) in Medical Education.

All applicants must have full GMC registration and have a valid certificate in both ALS and EPLS before commencing the role.

The post runs to August and fits in with the NHS training system. 

Applications in the form of a covering letter expressing the candidates’ reasons for applying for the post, together with a supporting CV, should be sent to Dr Claire Smith, Head of Anatomy, Brighton and Sussex Medical School, University of Sussex Campus, Falmer BN1 9PX.

Further particulars are available from Matron at Nuffield Health Brighton Hospital on 01273 624488, Matron at The Montefiore Hospital on 01273 828117 or Dr Claire Smith, Head of Anatomy, Brighton and Sussex Medical School on 01273 877890.

We will apply to the Criminal Records Bureau for disclosure on the successful candidate.

Nuffield Health Careers > 
Montefiore Hospital >


Body donation

We are very grateful to those who are generous enough to donate their bodies for science and medical education. Brighton and Sussex Medical School arrange this through the London Anatomy Office.

Medical schools still need the generosity of individuals to gift their bodies to them. Despite all the advances in technology, donated human bodies are essential in the teaching of future generations of doctors and allied health care students. These students need to learn the intricacies of the human body and the skills, and attitudes that are associated with patient treatment. Medical students systematically work through donors to learn about the human body in health and disease. Qualified specialists such as surgeons frequently visit the anatomy department to help them prepare for complex surgical cases. They use donated human bodies to practice and develop new surgeries and treatments for conditions. 

The anatomy department is regulated by the Human Tissue Authority and regularly inspected. Respect is at the heart of everything we do. We understand that donating your body to science is a large step and we encourage you to discuss it with family and friends. To donate your body please contact the London Anatomy Office on the details below and they will be happy to advise and to send you all you need. 

You may wish to learn more about body donation and understand some examples of what medical schools can and can’t do with your body. You might also like to learn more about what happens to your body when the medical school have finished their teaching and research. There are several sources for you to look at. The Human Tissue Authority provides advice here >

The London Anatomy Office has FAQs here >

Professor Smith has written a book called the Silent Teacher the Gift of Body donation that is available from all good bookshops and online retailers.

Professor Smith also has a website dedicated to body donation that contains poems written by students to their ‘Silent Teachers’ this is available here >

If you are considering donating and have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

T: +44 (0)1273 877890