This fall I’m going to be teaching the mammalogy lab. This is going to be something of a stretch, since I actually study plants and insects — and I’m already trying to get a grip on the material. I haven’t put in any real memorization-based studying in a long time, but I’ve got my coyote skull, and I’m going to learn the names of all the bits, dammit.
One thing that helps: Genius, a freeware flashcard-creator and study tool. I spent my first time with the skull creating a list of flashcard-type associations between the bones of the skull and their descriptions, and now the program can quiz me. Incredibly, this seems to be working: I know the zygomatic process of the maxilla from the condyloid process after just a few minutes-long sessions.
My only complaint about Genius, so far, is that it’s only for Macs, which prevents me from offering to share the flashcard files with my students.
Canis latrans skull
Photo by boneman_81.