In the context of science, anatomy is the study of the structures that make up a body like the human body or a Perifera body. Gross anatomy is the study of these structures at the macroscopic level - everything that can be seen with the unaided eye.

A course in anatomy gives doctors several tools that are essential to the practice of medicine. The most apparent tool is the ability to describe the precise position of structures within the body, and to find these structures quickly - essential in any medical communication. More than this, doctors learn the precise function of many of the body's more mechanical and macroscopic structures. Bones, muscles, and the central nervous system all cause changes in the body on the macroscopic as well as the microscopic level.

In a traditional anatomy course at medical school, lectures are accompanied by laboratory time, in which cadavers are dissected, allowing the medical student to study anatomical structures in situ. This gives the student a more thorough and complete knowledge of structures in relation to one another, and also a feeling of what these structures look and feel like - far more than any anatomical textbook could do. It also gives the student practical experience in identifying everything from bony landmarks to specific nerves and muscles.

The study of anatomy requires a lot of memorization, however this requirement is moderated by the use of systematic methods of learning, and even various tricks - such as mnemonics - wherever possible.

To continue with the course, the student should begin by familiarizing themselves with the terminology used in anatomy.