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It seems to me that virtual and actual dissection should be used in combination. Although a the previous responses suggests that real dissection be reserved for those pursuing a career in the biological science, I can say from my experience that it is often the dissection experience that leads kids into those fields.
I can see the value of both. It would help to see some of these computer simulated dissections first hand before making that call. Interestingly enough, I was just looking for such a program today for our high school. The real specimens are expensive and the sheer volume of animals used for dissections nationwide strikes me as being wasteful and wrong. Maybe if the real ones were reserved for students seriously pursuing a career in medicine, the simulations could fulfill the requirements of those that just need the basics.
I would like to hear from those that have actually used computer simulated science programs.
Each has their strengths and weaknesses.