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Safe Alternatives For Hands On Learning Of X Ray Imaging Principles

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Ethical & Industrial Issues in BME

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.997.1 - 8.997.8



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Paper Authors

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Rebecca Zambon

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Rachael Shevin

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Cynthia Paschal

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Stacy Klein-Gardner

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2209

Safe Alternatives For Hands On Learning Of X-Ray Imaging Principles

Rachael Shevin1, Rebecca J. Zambon1, Stacy S. Klein 1,2, Cynthia B. Paschal1,3 1 Department of Biomedical Engineering, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN 37235-1631 / 2 University School of Nashville, Nashville, TN 37212 / 3 Department of Radiology & Radiological Sciences, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN 37232-2675


Hands-on learning of x-ray imaging principles using actual x-ray equipment is unrealistic due to high equipment costs, limited availability of such devices, and, most of all, safety concerns. Computer simulators can substitute for hands-on learning but are not necessarily as effective, especially for kinesthetic learners, and typically limit the amount of collaborative work possible. The objective of this work is to teach principles of x-ray imaging using a creative, safe and inexpensive alternative to “real” hands-on-learning. Visible light is used in specially designed exercises to teach the principles of attenuation, magnification, penumbra, and detector resolution. An exercise to teach the principle of attenuation is described in detail in this paper.


Hands-on, collaborative learning is a useful style for many learners and has the potential to increase the participation of women and minorities in science and engineering. Research has shown that young women learn science well in classrooms that use hands- on investigations 1, 2 as described in this paper. Girls learn well when coursework is collaborative1, 3, 4 and utilizes girls’ verbal skills4. Girls learn science better when the curriculum clearly links mathematics, science, and technology to the real world4, 5, 6, and integrates these topics as well7. X-ray imaging is a topic that definitely integrates mathematics, science, and technology and has obvious impact in the real world. Most children have some experience with x-ray imaging, either through dental or skeletal x- rays taken of themselves or of others they know.

Young African American children have been shown to have a relational style of learning8 that closely aligns with the sensing-perceiving temperament personality description9 of Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Zambon, R., & Shevin, R., & Paschal, C., & Klein-Gardner, S. (2003, June), Safe Alternatives For Hands On Learning Of X Ray Imaging Principles Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--11573

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