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Are You Smarter Than a First Year Physiotherapy Student?
By: Christine Pang, Bkin, Year 2 MscPT Student

How much do you remember from your university days? 

Give yourself a brain-break from all the stress and dive into a nostalgic journey back to some introductory knowledge you may have come across in your early schooling days. This scientifically-proven quiz 😉 will determine just how well you know the human body. 

Whether you have been practicing for 10 months, or 10 years, there might be some bits of knowledge that have trickled away. There are no more quizzes, bell-ringer exams, or daunting practical scenarios that require you to have the brachial plexus memorized by heart, so how much do you know off the top of your head? 

Now, this is not to challenge your expertise as a practitioner, although it might challenge your ego a little bit. Regardless if you get 2 or all of the following correct, we believe that you are still a superstar at your job, whether you are a physiotherapist, chiropractor, occupational therapist, or even an electrician who happened to come by this quiz. 

You will be presented with a series of questions, either multiple choice or short answer. For every question you answer correctly, you will earn a certain number of points, depending on the length and difficulty of the question.

Tabulate your score and see how you did at the very end using our very professionally 100% valid and reliable scoring system that will provide you with not only an accurate description of your current knowledge but also provide valuable next- steps for you (secrets ahead, shhhh!!)

The answer key is at the end of each section. Tally up your score and earn a gift for all of your hard work!


Section 1

Let’s warm up with an easy one, shall we? 

1. Name the structure labeled “1” in the picture below. (1 point)

Sartorius muscle on upper thigh


You’re proud of yourself, aren’t you? Ok, what about this one?

2. Name the muscle shown in the picture below. (1 point)

quadratus lumborum muscle attached to vertebrae and pelvic bone

(Image Source)


Easy peasy right? Ok, let’s keep going! 

3. Name the joint that is circled in the picture below (1 point)

Humerus and scapula to form glenohumeral joint

(Image Source)


Section 1: Answer Key


Did you know that this ball and socket joint is one of the most mobile and unstable joints of the body? This synovial joint has 3 degrees of freedom, but with so much freedom, there is always instability (similar to life, right?).

Shoulder pathologies can be present at any age and demographic, such as this teenage baseball pitcher who has been experiencing ongoing shoulder and elbow pain and axillary tingling. Watch the Orthopaedic Physiotherapy Grand Rounds 2 to see how expert panelists clinically reason through this complex case of shoulder instability.

Orthopaedic Physiotherapy Grand Rounds 2


If you are interested in how breast cancer treatment can correlate to shoulder pain and stiffness, the sixth Orthopaedics Physiotherapy Grand Rounds provides insight on radiation-induced pathologies, and interventions aimed to address this puzzling case.

Orthopaedic Physiotherapy Grand Rounds 6


Section 2

4. Fill in the blanks in the following sentence, and just a reminder, we are not playing MadLibs. Since we are starting off easy, some hints will be provided in brackets. (1 point; 0.5 for each blank) 


_____ ______ ______ detect the tension applied to the muscle tendon, either through contraction, or a passive stretch, squeezing  _____ (Number + Letter) sensory afferents.


Exposed tendon attaching muscle belly to bone

(Image Source: "Golgi tendon organ" by sportEX journals is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0)


I think that was a bit too easy for you. Don’t worry, we’re still warming up!

5. Which 2 muscle actions at the glenohumeral joint do the following 3 muscles have in common? ( 1 point; 0.5 each action) 

  1. Pectoralis Major
  2. Latissimus Dorsi
  3. Teres Major 

Were those too easy? Keep going to really challenge yourself!

6. Which muscle is helping you keep your eyes open so you can crush this amazing quiz? (1 point) 

  1. Superior rectus muscle
  2. Eyelido lifter pomplemoussus
  3. Levator palpebrae superiors
  4. Frontalis muscle
  5. A and C

Fun fact: This muscle elevates the eyelid and is innervated by the occulomotor nerve (cranial nerve 3).

7. Label the structure that the arrow is pointing to. (Hint: Circle of Willis) (1 point)

Superior axial view of open skull with circle of Willis and arrow pointing to basilar artery

(Image Source: "Servier - Drawing Arteries brain inferior view - no labels" by Servier Medical Art, license: CC BY)


Bonus (no points): What structures do this artery and its branches primarily feed?


8. Which of the following is not a real structure on/in the human body? (1 point) 

  1. Flocculonodular lobe
  2. Dactylion
  3. Substantia Nigra
  4. Jokbal bodies
  5. Nucleus ambiguus
  6. Oligodendrocytes
  7. Gnathion
  8. You can’t fool me, all of the above are real things


9. Fill in the blank to the following statement. (1 point; 0.5 each) 

The brain is divided into lobes, each with different functions. The frontal lobe is in charge of ______ functions, while the _______ lobe takes care of sensory functions. 


Section 2: Answer Key

Section 3

Ok, you’re breezing through this with a smile on your face, let’s kick things up a notch

10. Fill in the blanks to complete the following sentence. (3 points; 1 point each) 

The ankle is a hinge joint with several ligaments surrounding it. The lateral collateral ligament resists ankle _______ (hint: a movement), and has 3 distinct bands that are named according to their bony attachments. Namely, they are:

  1. ATFL: Anterior talofibular ligament 
  2. _____:___________ ligament 
  3. _____: ________ _________ ligament

Fun fact: The number of bones in our feet and ankles accounts for more than one-quarter of the 206 bones we have in our body. With that many bones and the ankle being one of the most common areas of injury, it is not surprising that ankle fractures are also quite common. 

Man sitting with beer bottle on table


Click the link below to learn more about a case of ankle stiffness following a trimalleolar fracture. Orthopaedics Physiotherapy Grand Rounds 4 follows a police officer who has yet to be able to return to work 1-year post-fracture.

Orthopaedic Physiotherapy Grand Rounds 4


11. What 2 functions does muscle “1” perform on the scapula? (1 point)

posterior view of thorax with levator scapula muscle, trapezius and latissimus dorsi


12. Place the following events in the correct order. We’re not that mean, so the first and last events are correctly ordered for you. (4 points)

 Spongebob with hands on waistIf you wanted to say “I aLreAdy kNEw tHaT”, then cool, you have an awesome memory, but here it is anyway.


  1. Action potential travels down the pre-synaptic neuron and reaches the axon terminal
  2. Ca2+ binds to synaptic vesicles, which fuse to pre-synaptic membrane
  3. ligand-gated channels are triggered to open
  4. Neurotransmitters enter the synaptic cleft
  5. Ca2+ voltage-gated channels are stimulated to open
  6. Na+ ions enter the post-synaptic neuron and a nerve impulse is generated


Section 3: Answer Key

Whoo, did you break a sweat thinking of that, or did it seem like Captain Obvious made that question? Next one, let’s go! 

Section 4

13. Match the following cranial nerves (CN) to their corresponding statement. (5 points) 

  1. CN 10: Vagus nerve
  2. CN 5: Trigeminal nerve
  3. CN 7: Facial nerve
  4. CN 9: Glossopharyngeal nerve
  5. CN 11: Accessory nerve

  1. Has a somatic sensory component that is split into 3 divisions (V1, V2, and V3)
  2. Innervates the posterior ⅓ of the tongue to carry the special sense of taste
  3. Innervates the anterior ⅔ of the tongue to carry special sense of taste
  4. Is associated with lateral medullary syndrome
  5. A lesion to this nerve will paralyze the contralateral upper trapezius muscle and ipsilateral sternocleidomastoid muscle

Fun fact: The vagus nerve is involved in the gag reflex. Unwanted sensations in the pharynx triggers the vagus nerve to elevate the soft palate to close off the nasal passage, close the glottis to protect the lower respiratory passage, and contract the pharyngeal muscles to expel the foreign object.

Want to see how the vagus nerve plays a part in everyday life? Watch the discussion between expert physiotherapists about a patient presenting with ongoing headaches and visual disturbances. The fifth Orthopaedics Physiotherapy Grand Rounds touches upon so many areas of practice and different perspectives of the case. Don’t miss out, click the link below to watch it now!

Orthopaedic Physiotherapy Grand Rounds 5


14. Complete the table for structures that contribute to knee stability. (4 points)


Structure Function
   1. Anterior cruciate ligament    Resists knee _____
   2. _____ _____ _____    Resists knee flexion
   3. Medial cruciate ligament    Resis knee _____ 
   4. Lateral cruciate ligament    Resist knee _____



15. Complete the following statements. (3 points) 

  1. The ______ ________ muscle is the innermost portion of the quadriceps.
  2. This muscle is supplied by the ________ artery and innervated by the _______nerve.


Section 4: Answer Key

Did you know that the vastus medialis obliquus acts as a patellar stabilizer? The patella, being the free-spirited soul that it is, basically just “floats” amongst a network of tendon and fascia. Patellar tracking issues can arise when there becomes an imbalance between forces tethering the patella (stronger vastus lateralis muscle, IT band tightness, gluteal weakness). Knee pain is a very common complaint in various demographics, and is often associated with a series of other symptoms, including low back, hip, or ankle pain.

I say this because the person writing this blog is currently in the midst of a flare-up that has been intermittently disrupting her life for the past 10 years.


Patient sitting in chair looking at confused doctor


From an anecdotal perspective, the patellofemoral joint is still a big question mark, but Orthopaedic Physiotherapy Grand Rounds 7 takes a deep dive into the diagnosis and treatment of a highly active patient who has been suffering from chronic knee, lower back and pelvic pain.

Orthopaedic Physiotherapy Grand Rounds 7


Section 5

Alright, we’re near the end, this is where the real fun begins. Ready to question your abilities as a healthcare practitioner? I’m just kidding…or am I? 

16. Label the following structures, and pfft, you don’t need hints. (3 points; 0.5 for each blank)

Muscle belly attached to bone, with labels pointing to components (Image source: "OLI - Drawing Structure of skeletal muscle and sheats - English labels" by Open Learning Initiative, license: CC BY-NC-SA

  1. _________________
  2. _________________
  3. _________________
  4. _________________
  5. _________________
  6. _________________

Did that bring back flashbacks of first-year physiology? I remember everything about that class like it was yesterday, except for the knowledge portion of it. On to the next! (we’re not done with the muscle just yet)

17. Remember this beautiful sight? Fill in the table below for what happens to each component of the sarcomere during CONCENTRIC muscle CONTRACTION. I’ve even graciously provided a word bank for you, so you should breeze through this. (Bonus hint: Not all options will be used, and some options can be used more than once). (6 points)

Diagram of sarcomere


Stays the same    Lengthens      Jiggle jiggle, it folds     Widens     Closes up     Runs away 

Gets closer together         Shrinks until the entire muscle dissipates          Shortens


Sarcomere Component What happens during muscle contraction
   a) A band  
   b) I band  
   c) Zone of Overlap (ZOO)  
   d) M line  
   e) Z disc/line  
   f) H zone  


Did you get 'em all? Regardless, I’m proud of you for making it this far. Here it is, the last question, let’s finish this strong.

18. List the following for the muscle labeled as “1” in the image below. (5 points)

Anterior view of flexor carpi ulnaris muscle attached to forearm (Image source: "RCSI - Drawing Deep extensor muscles and tendons of forearm - English labels" by Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland, license: CC BY-NC-SA)

  1. Origin
  2. Insertion
  3. Innervation (nerve and spinal segment contribution) *worth 2 points; 1 for each answer*
  4. Disruption of this nerve will result in SENSORY cutaneous symptoms on which area(s) of the body
  5. Bonus (add an extra point if you get this): For my PT/PTA friends, or anyone who knows -> Which neurodynamic test would bias the ulnar nerve?


Section 5: Answer Key


Tabulate your score and get your free gift!

Tally up your score and read on to learn how to get your free gift - 🎁 free registration to 1 Ortho Grand Rounds course of your choosing!

Total score

Quite frankly, it really does not matter how you did. Taking the time to further your expertise and knowledge using the abundance of courses offered on Embodia is already a win. Your only remaining step is to check out the Orthopaedics Physiotherapy Grand Rounds if you haven’t already.

Good job on the quiz, let us know how you did on Instagram to get FREE registration to an Orthopaedics Grand Rounds Course of YOUR CHOICE! All you have to do is share your score OR tell us which question tripped you up on the quiz! Let us know in the comments section of this post. 

Share How You Did on this Instagram Post!


Written: 10 Nov, 2022
Last update: 17 Nov, 2022

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