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25/50 students failing anatomy avc


Hi statistically is this normal for anatomy? my college breaks anatomy and physiology up separately fyi. I cant believe the rate of fails I'm just curious if this is common for college anatomy

A LOT of people have a hard time in A&P. If you are the type of learner that needs to see and do, it is hard to imagine and remember.

WanderingWilder, ASN

Specializes in Med-Surg.

My class started with 25 and we are down to 16. I think our instructor is pretty easy considering, we get 2 pages of notes for each exam except for the bone and muscle test.

I found that this is one of the first classes that many take and realize that they sometimes don't want to be in the medical field as badly as they thought.. :)

Yes, at my school the fail rate for anatomy is anywhere between 40 and 50 percent. I've heard this from quite a few other schools too. Anatomy is considered to be one of the "weed out" classes at many schools.

Not unheard of, typically people drop the course right up until the final drop date.

llg, PhD, RN

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 44 years experience.

Not uncommon for schools that have a liberal admissions policy. They accept a lot of students -- give them a chance -- and then use a couple of difficult courses to "weed out" those unwilling or unable to perform at a very high level.

Other schools do it differently and have high admission standards. Only the very top students get into the program and have a chance to take the courses. But those who do are all prepared for a high level of difficulty -- and the courses are not designed to "weed people out." In those programs, the big hurdle is getting in ... but once you're in, there is more support to help the students succeed.

Sounds like nursing school haha

TooManyCats, ASN, BSN

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 4 years experience.

I took a back to back A&P I and II course, 8 weeks each class. We started with 20+ students, with one only intending on taking the first half. So of 19 students that set out to finish the semester, we had 5 at the final exam. Granted, accelerated courses will do that, but anatomy is tough.

verene, MSN

Specializes in mental health / psychiatic nursing.

Not at my school, maybe 5 out of 30 dropped each quarter. That being said A&P is not a primary weed out course at my school, students are expected to have taken and have a high pass in either bio or chem coursework before even being allowed to register for A&P.


Specializes in PCT, RN. Has 3 years experience.

Last semester, my friend and I had A&PI and we were lucky to have an easy-going teacher and managed to pass with A's.

This semester, I decided to take my A&PII online and my friend took hers on campus.

I still maintain an A, but she was telling me horror stories of her new class; more than half of the students dropped and withdrew and the ones that remain are all in the D ranges and not one person has above a C. A couple of weeks ago they had a test, everyone bombed, and the teacher spent the next class period yelling at everyone lol.

I think that high fail and drop rates for Anatomy is pretty common. It's not an easy class and it can be exceptionally hard if you don't have a good instructor.

I went to a community college, and we had 3 instructors for A&P I. The class section I was in had something like 84 students at the beginning of the semester, 17 students took the final. It was crazy! This is what I took away from that experience: Our instructor was TOUGH. She didn't want you to spit out information willy-nilly, you had to know how to apply it. Students from the other classes were getting A's, and constantly urging those in our class to "switch to the easy instructor". The best thing I ever did was ignore those urgings. The people who took the "easier" A&P instructors really struggled in the nursing classes. Those of us who had the tough instructors actually remembered the concepts and such and did not struggle nearly as much as those in the "easy" classes. Interestingly, our school started keeping track of drop/grade patterns and found that the students who were in the classes with low drop rates coupled with predominately A's and B's in lower-level classes had high rates of failure in the nursing program.

I invited both of my A&P instructors to my pinning because I felt that they truly prepared me for the nursing classes. They were not liked by many students, but they were excellent instructors!!


windsurfer8, BSN

Specializes in Psych/Military Nursing. Has 14 years experience.

It doesn't matter if it is "common". What matters is you need to pass the class. Do not worry about others. It is a mentality and mind set. It doesn't matter if a single person besides you passes. That is not your concern. There is no percentage that "have" to pass a class. If only one person passes BE that person.

I went to a 4 year University. High school to BSN and all science pre reqs needed to be done at my school, they did not accept transfer credits on science pre reqs. If you passed the sci pre requs with a 3.0 and had above a 3.25 overall you were automatically in nursing school...no wait list or application at all.

142 of us started as Freshmen. 67 of us made it into nursing school, and most of those who did not failed out of anatomy. Only 59 graduated, the rest failed out of pharm or med surg

You would have to compare the drop rate of this instructor to other instructors. I am so glad my class had A&P combined. I dont understand why some schools separate the two.

Just do Your work and study you butt off. Yes I went there and those that didn't stay on top of their studying couldn't make it. I'm about to graduate from RN school and because I studied so hard in my prereq's I have done very well. If people can't make it through anatomy and physiology then they aren't going to make it through nursing school. BTW Phys is way harder than anatomy.