5 Secrets to Building Your Medical Terminology Curriculum Blog Feature
Bri Stauffer

By: Bri Stauffer on March 4th, 2015

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5 Secrets to Building Your Medical Terminology Curriculum

Health Science | Medical Terminology

Working with health science instructors on a daily basis has given us a little bit of insight when it comes to what topics are important to those of you in healthcare education. One question we’ve heard a number of times is “Where can I find medical terminology activities?"

Well have we got a surprise for you! Here you will find ideas and activities from many different health science resources to help you build your dream medical terminology activity toolbox.

However, it takes more than just medical terminology lesson plans to build a curriculum.

Before reaching your goal, there are a couple of steps to take.

The five secrets to building your medical terminology curriculum are:

  1. Have great medical terminology lesson plans
  2. Use medical terminology activities
  3. Look at your instructional materials
  4. Use online review games
  5. Add hands-on classroom activities

1. Have Great Medical Terminology Lesson Plans


Before we get into the good stuff, it's important to remember that every medical terminology activity should tie into a lesson. So make sure you have some great medical terminology lesson plans to start.

If you need some, try looking here: Medical Terminology Lesson Plans that will Blow your Mind. This post by Sarah will help you make sure your medical terminology curriculum is up to par, or even above and beyond.

Once you have a great base, it’s time to start adding activities that will take your medical terminology lessons to the next level!

2. Use Medical Terminology Activities


The University of Minnesota has a hidden gem on their website:  Anatomy and Physiology study aids and an even further hidden area of Medical Terminology Activities. The activities here are segmented into different lists in which your students must correctly identify the meaning of prefixes, roots, and suffixes.

Each list has an automatic grader which will give your students feedback on what medical terms they should spend more time learning. This is a great site to share with your students if they want to study with more than just flashcards.

If your students like how medical terminology flashcards work, but don’t want to carry around a stack of index cards, this flashcard activity from StudyStack could be a good alternative… especially for students who have smartphones or other mobile devices.

It is a self-moderated activity, where the student tells whether they were correct or incorrect. Once the student works through all of the medical terms, they can choose to either restart with the entire list of medical terms or focus on the ones they didn’t answer correctly.

3. Look at Your Medical Terminology Materials


Have you double-checked your existing health science textbooks and resources? It’s possible that there is a gem hiding in there somewhere to better teach medical terminology to your students.Health Science Textbooks and Curriculum

Or you may even have a specifically dedicated medical terminology textbook with some extra goodies you missed last time you used it.

If you use HealthCenter21, there are some medical terminology activities you can find in the resources of the Medical Terminology module.

Our curriculum team included a word search, crossword puzzle, and definition sheet (answer keys provided for you) to give your students a different way to study the terms. 

4. Use Online Medical Terminology Review Games


Not only does StudyStack have the flashcard activity mentioned above, there are a number of other medical terminology activities your students can use to remember medical terms.

These include Medical Terminology Fill in the Blank, a matching game, a riff on the classic snake game, and some other game-like activities.

Because these games are online, your students can use them to study medical terms practically anywhere. StudyStack has an option to create an account so your students can track high scores. Though your students can play these games without an account, introducing a bit of competition could give them an added incentive to try them.

5. Add Hands-On Classroom Activities


Medical Terminology Puzzle Pieces:

Students start by writing the medical term on one half of a piece of paper, and the meaning on the other half. Then they cut the sheet into 2 "puzzle" pieces. You can assign each student to do a handful of words so everyone is involved in prepping for the activity.

Once all pieces are done, mix them up and either lay them out in a large area or you can tape them to the wall/board. The goal is to have students successfully match the term to the meaning.

Medical Terminology Memory Match:

Give your students either a blank paper, or one with a grid where they fill in terms and meanings. Then have them cut the sheets into individual sheets, which will be the "memory cards". Mix up the cards and then play like a standard memory match game. The students must flip to try and match the term to the meaning.

Start Using Your Medical Terminology Toolbox


Pick and choose any of the activities or games listed here and start adding them to your existing lessons. 

If you want to take your lessons a step further, download our free guide on medical terminology lesson plans!

Get your guide now!

Medical Terminology Lesson Plans


About Bri Stauffer

Bri collaborates with others at AES to create content that answers your questions about teaching classes, preparing students for certifications, and making the most of the AES digital curriculum.

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