The Medical Terminology – A Word Association Approach course will teach you to understand medical terminology as it pertains to each body system. Using graphics and study tips you will not only learn definitions and root terms, but also their application in the medical world. Learning blocks are used to condense information and to help isolate what you need to know verses what is nice to know, and you will be provided with fun and unusual facts to help you remember the medical terminology in unique ways. You will have opportunities to see how medical terminology is used in the real world through case study assignments and will be provided with flashcards to help you study. The knowledge gained in this course will help you take the next step in your medical career or education.
What you will learn
- The meaning of medical word components such as roots, prefixes and suffixes
- How to interpret medical terms even if they are completely new to you
- How medical terms are used in sentences, and paragraphs
How you will benefit
- Set yourself up to enter a career in healthcare with an understanding and ability to interpret complex medical terms
- Learn a method that will help you easily recall and interpret medical terminology when you need it most
- Increase your medical industry communication skills
How the course is taught
- Instructor-led or self-paced online course
- 6 Weeks or 3 Months access
- 24 course hours
Welcome to the first lesson of medical terminology! You'll begin the course by exploring root terms, which represent the main meaning of a combined medical term. A combined medical term consists of a root, a prefix, and/or a suffix. As you progress through each lesson of this course, you'll see that it proceeds by "body system," and the first lesson will go over root terms that are associated with the musculoskeletal system. Naturally, it will talk a lot about the muscles, bones, joints, and tendons of the body.
In this lesson, you'll learn a variety of terminology relating to the integumentary and digestive systems. The integumentary system includes the skin, connective tissues, and some loosely associated structures such as nails and teeth. When it discusses the digestive system, you'll learn medical terminology relating to the digestive tract from the mouth, to the pharynx, to the esophagus, and so on, all the way out to the exterior of the body.
This lesson will go over terminology related to the cardiovascular and respiratory systems. The cardiovascular system includes the heart, arteries, veins, and blood, while the respiratory system includes the lungs and assorted chest structures.
This lesson will focus on the urinary and reproductive systems. When you go over the urinary system, you'll learn terminology related to the kidneys, bladder, urine, and even some chemistry terms. When you go over the reproductive system, you'll learn root terms that refer to both male and female anatomical structures.
This lesson will finish up the discussion about root terms. You'll learn root terms that are associated with the neurosensory system, including nerves, the eyes, ears, brain, and spinal cord. You'll then begin doing something a little different—at the end of the lesson, you'll do a little review session to help you remember all of the root terms that you've learned up to this point.
In this lesson, you'll learn about prefixes and suffixes that are common in medicine and start with the letters A through H. Starting here, you won't be going through the word associations that you did in previous lessons. By now, you'll find that you can recognize many of these terms as they're used in normal, everyday language.
In this lesson, you'll continue to progress through the prefixes and suffixes commonly used in medical terminology. Your objective here will be to identify the common medical prefixes and suffixes that begin with the letters I through O.
In this lesson, you'll complete your tour through the alphabetical listings of the most common prefixes and suffixes used in medical terminology by focusing on prefixes and suffixes that begin with the letters P through Z. You'll find that there are many more terms that medical professionals use less often, and you'll even discover that sometimes a root that you already know is used as a prefix or suffix.
In previous lessons, you learned about common prefixes and suffixes. In this lesson, you'll study specific prefixes and suffixes that pertain to color. Color is used quite a bit in the medical field because it helps everyone to describe various signs and symptoms. In this lesson, you'll also go over medical abbreviations that are specific to the various occupations and titles of the medical industry. Your assignment in this lesson will change a little as your research becomes a bit more challenging.
The medical community uses an abundance of abbreviations. Some medical facilities don't allow them, but you should still learn the meanings of the most common abbreviations so you'll know them when you see them. For this lesson, you'll study the abbreviations that start with the letters A through R. Your assignment for this lesson will be a bit different—you're going to find words in a medical note that you can replace with the abbreviations that you learned in the lesson.
In this lesson, you'll finish your study of medical abbreviations as you explore the abbreviations that begin with letters S through Z. You'll also go over specific abbreviations that refer to hospital areas, laboratory tests, chemistries, and medical symbols. In this assignment, it's up to you to find the abbreviations that correctly relate to each sentence in a medical note.
Here in the final lesson, it's time to put everything you've learned together. You'll look at your roots, prefixes, and suffixes, and see how they create combined medical terms from body system to body system. You'll also learn some directional terms that are commonly used in medicine. You'll find that your assignment for this lesson provides you the opportunity to decipher a complete medical note.
Douglas Best is a trainer for Humana Military. He began working as a field medical instructor in the US Army in 1980. He has worked as a nurse in such areas as pediatrics, the emergency room, and the adult cardiac, surgical, newborn, and medical intensive care units. He is also a curriculum specialist and has developed workforce training programs including Medical Specialty Training for Displaced Workers, Certified Nursing Assistant in Spanish, and Medical Transcription for the University of Texas at Brownsville.
Instructor Interaction: The instructor looks forward to interacting with learners in the online moderated discussion area to share their expertise and answer any questions you may have on the course content.
There are no prerequisites to take this course. No medical background is necessary.
- This course can be taken on either a PC, Mac, or Chromebook.
- PC: Windows 8 or later.
- Mac: macOS 10.6 or later.
- Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
- Adobe Acrobat Reader.
- Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.
- Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.
Instructional Material Requirements:
The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.
Instructor-Led: A new session of each course begins each month. Please refer to the session start dates for scheduling.
Self-Paced: Your course begins immediately after you enroll.
Instructor-Led: Once a course session starts, two lessons will be released each week for the 6 week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends. You will interact with the instructor through the online discussion area. There are no live sessions or online meetings with the instructor.
Self-Paced: You have 3 months of access to the course. After enrolling, you can learn and complete the course at your own pace, within the allotted access period. You will have the opportunity to interact with other students in the online discussion area.
Instructor-Led: The interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes two weeks after each lesson is released, so you're encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release. However, you will have access to all lessons from the time they are released until the course ends.
Self-Paced: There is no time limit to complete each lesson, other than completing all lessons within the allotted access period. Discussion areas for each lesson are open for the entire duration of the course.
Instructor-Led: Students enrolled in a six-week online class benefit from a one-time, 10-day extension for each course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.
Self-Paced: Because this course is self-paced, no extensions will be granted after the start of your enrollment.
Medical terminology is the special language used to describe the human body. This includes the body's processes, systems, components, conditions affecting it, and the procedures that are performed on it. It is a special language found throughout healthcare professions that allows workers to communicate more quickly and effectively with one another.
Understanding medical terminology is extremely important if you work in or aspire to work in healthcare. Everything you do in healthcare positions will be based on it as it's used to describe not only diagnoses and procedures but also symptoms and medical equipment. Knowing medical terminology will help you communicate with other healthcare workers to ensure that patients get proper care and will set you apart as a dedicated professional in the industry.
Medical terms are often created using various prefixes and suffixes in Latin and Ancient Greek. The meaning of these words are frequently derived from the language of origin. These prefixes and suffixes are combined with a root term to create meaning.
The root in medical terminology often refers to the organ, tissue, or condition that is being referenced. Once you understand the way medical terminology is put together and memorize some of the roots as well as suffixes and prefixes, it becomes easy to understand various terms and how they are assembled.
Doctors, nurses, medical technicians and others who perform procedures are not the only people who need to understand medical terminology. Almost any type of healthcare job can benefit from an understanding of medical terminology. Even if you're working at an entry-level, it will help you to develop a basic knowledge of medical terminology in the following careers as well:
- Medical transcriptionist
- Medical records specialist
- Surgical technician
- Occupational therapy assistant/aide
- Radiology technician
- Medical assistant
- Pharmacy technician
- Medical biller
- Medical coder
- Pharmaceutical salesperson
In addition to those in healthcare, there are also several non-healthcare careers that would benefit from a knowledge of medical transcription. Lawyers, paralegals, court reporters, legal secretaries and other legal professionals who handle cases that involve medical related issues should understand the terminology involved. Therapists and counselors should also consider a course in medical terminology as it can help them when interacting with and discussing patients.
Word association is the natural production of additional words in response to a given word. This is often made into a game to prompt memory and is a very effective learning technique especially when learning a new language.