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Age Range: 11-14 | 14-16
Duration: 30-59 mins
  • D&T
  • Physics

Which medical imaging technique?

Selecting a method of medical imaging most appropriate for a particular medical condition

In this activity, students will role play as a medical imaging team at a hospital who must analyse patient records and choose the best imaging method for each patient.

Together with the related activities Engineers can read your mind, and Electromagnetic waves, this resource allows students to investigate the wide range of sophisticated imaging technology available in modern hospitals, and to explore the latest ideas in search-and-rescue robotics.

This is one of a set of resources developed to aid the class teaching of the secondary national curriculum, particularly KS3. It has been designed to support the delivery of key topics within design and technology (DT) and science.

Activity: Selecting a method of medical imaging most appropriate for a particular medical condition

This activity gets students to work in small teams to select a method of medical imaging which is appropriate to a particular medical condition.

The lesson begins with students being provided with the medical records of eight patients. They will also review several different imaging techniques including: CAT, Gamma cameras, MRI, PET, Thermology, Ultrasound and X-rays.

Working in teams, students will examine the patient records and determine the most suitable imaging technique for each patient, recording their choices on our Recommendations worksheet.

Each team will present their findings to the class, explaining why they selected particular imaging techniques.

Download our activity overview for a lesson plan on medical imaging.

The engineering context

The use of different types of signals is hugely important in all areas of healthcare. Signal processing engineers are involved in everything from extracting information from the body’s own electrical and chemical signals to using wireless signals to allow search-and-rescue robot swarms to communicate with each other.

Suggested learning outcomes

In this lesson students will learn that different types of waves have different types of properties that can be exploited for medical purposes. They will also understand the workings of different types of imaging systems and know that their different properties mean that they are suited to different tasks, specifically in hospitals.

Download our activity sheet and other teaching resources

The activity sheet includes teachers’ notes, useful web links, and links (where appropriate) to the national curriculum in each of the four devolved nations; England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

All activity sheets and supporting resources are free to download, and all the documents are fully editable, so you can tailor them to your class’s and your schools’ needs.

You can download our classroom lesson plan below.

Please do share your highlights with us @IETeducation. 


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