Colleges Send Brains to Students for Dissection at Home

Needless to say, the students were shocked by the packages they got.
Loukia Papadopoulos

The COVID-19 pandemic has seen educators get quite creative when it comes to teaching their students. No longer able to teach from classes, the educators have improvised with Zoom sessions and other online educational tools.

But what do you do for biology courses where dissecting animal parts is an essential part of learning? One college came up with a creative solution. They mailed the animal parts to the students, as reported by Futurism.


Lafayette College sent neuroscience students enrolled in a physiology course preserved sheep brains in a mailing package. And then neuroscientist and psychologist Luis Schettino proceeded to guide the students on how to dissect the brains over a video call.

“To be honest, there is no substitute for having the students be all within the lab where we can communicate more directly and I can be sure I am showing them the location of the [brain] structures in person rather than through video,” Schettino told Futurism. “What I mean is that this is, of course, a second-best solution.”

And Lafayette is not the only school mailing animal parts for dissection. Both Stanford Medical School and the University of Arizona have partaken in the rather odd but ultimately educational practice.

Needless to say, students everywhere are being taken by surprise. "Well they told us they were going to be sending us a dissection kit, but I had no idea that they would be sending us real animal parts or anything like that, so it was a surprise when it came to the door," University of Arizona sophomore physiology and medical sciences student Julie Taraborrelli told BuzzFeed News.