Course Overview

The Dermatopathology Masterclass course offers a comprehensive guide to the principles of dermatopathology and will help you understand and interpret pathology reports. Led by experts in the field, the masterclass will develop your overall diagnostic skills to an accomplished level and teach you what dermatoscopic features correlate with histology slides. This will improve your ability to communicate with dermatopathologists, potentially question reports that are inconsistent with your dermatoscopic findings and make predictions about the specific histological diagnosis. You will learn how to assess features of normal skin, melanocytic lesions, tumours, naevi and inflammatory conditions, and will be equipped will the know-how to apply this knowledge in the primary care setting.

Cliff Video_1080

Entry Requirements and course requisites

The Dermatopathology Masterclass is ideal for medical professionals who wish to better understand pathology test results which is critical for reaching appropriate diagnoses and planning treatment. The masterclass is suitable for general practitioners as well as for International Medical Graduates. The masterclass assumes no prior knowledge or training in the field.

Masterclass Contents

The Dermatopathology Masterclass offers an excellent opportunity to enhance your knowledge of skin pathology, biopsies, histology and dermoscopy in order to diagnose and manage the majority of skin lesions encountered in primary care.

The modules cover:

  • Introduction to dermatopathology
  • Histology
  • Biopsies
  • Dermatoscopy
  • Specimen processing
  • Melanocytic lesions
  • Non-melanocytic lesions
  • Dysplastic naevi

Masterclass participants will:

  • Receive access to a digital workbook which can be downloaded prior to the course for your convenience
  • Receive unlimited and ongoing access to research/readings in the field, free alumni learning resources and video lectures, as well as invite-only events and special offers after completion of the course
  • Have the opportunity to participate in optional clinical attachments at dedicated skin cancer clinics



Time Session Topic  
8:00am - 9:00am Registration Sign-in and collect your lanyard and workbook  
9:00am - 10:00am Session 1a

Welcome and introduction

Introduction to dermatopathology

Cliff Rosendahl
10:00am - 11:00am Session 1b

Correlation cases

Cliff Rosendahl
11:00am - 11:30am Morning Tea    
11:30am - 12:30pm Session 2a

Non-melanocytic lesions (part 1)

Cliff Rosendahl & 
Simon Clark
12:30pm - 1:00pm Session 2b

Virtual slides

Simon Clark
1:00pm - 2:00pm Lunch    
2:00pm - 3:00pm Session 3 

Non-melanocytic lesions (part 2)

Cliff Rosendahl

3:00pm - 3:30pm Afternoon Tea    
3:30pm - 4:00pm Session 4a 

Virtual slides

Simon Clark

4:00pm - 5:00pm Session 4b

Dysplastic naevus: Fact and fiction

Cliff Rosendahl & 
Simon Clark


Time Session Topic  
7:45am - 8:00am Arrival  Sign in  
8:00am - 9:00am Session 5a

Specimen processing: Does the type of biopsy make a difference?

Simon Clark
9:00am - 10:00am Session 5b Correlation cases Cliff Rosendahl &
Simon Clark
10:00am - 10:30am Morning Tea    
10:30am - 11:30am Session 6a

Melanocytic lesions (part 1)

Simon Clark
11:30am - 12:00pm Session 6b

Correlation cases 

Simon Clark
12:00pm - 1:00pm Lunch    
1:00pm - 2:00pm Session 7 

Melanocytic lesions (part 2)

Simon Clark
2:00pm - 2:30pm  Afternoon Tea    
2:30pm - 3:30pm Session 8a

Correlation cases

Cliff Rosendahl &
Simon Clark
3:30pm - 4:00pm Session 8b

Conclusion and open forum

Cliff Rosendahl &
Simon Clark




Session 1: Suturing

Getting the basics right, this session includes clinical videos and student practicals covering a variety of suture types, including:
  • simple interrupted
  • buried dermal
  • sliding dermal
  • vertical horizontal mattress
  • Mirini
  • pulley dermal
  • half buried horizontal mattress
  • continous.
We also focus on closing dead space and paper-thin skin on elderly patients.


Session 5: Ellipse Planning

In this session, students will break up into small groups and work around torso models marked with specific lesions. Students will work together to design the most appropriate ellipses to treat these lesions, using knowledge gained in earlier sessions and with reference to NHMRC guidelines. Groups will also learn to mark out major nerves at risk including the temporal and marginal branches of facial nerves, Erb's point, and common peroneal nerves using surface anatomy.

Session 1b: Perfecting the Ellipse

Students will learn how to mark out a lesion using a dermatoscope with appropriate margins for both non-melanoma and melanoma skin cancers. This session includes marking a standard ellipse and S-plasty, designing your ellipse for optimal scar results, working with ellipses around joints, and facial skin tension lines.  We also cover tips for optimum wound apposition and undermining. The session includes video and clinical images of ellipses on a variety of anatomical areas.

Session 6: Chaos and Clues

Using a dermatoscope improves diagnostic accuracy for all types of skin malignancy, but only if the operator is trained. Chaos and Clues is a method designed for use in routine practice on multiple lesions without mathematical calculations.

Session 2: Local Anaesthetics

We will go into detail on local anaesthetics with both theory and practical components. We will cover pharmacology, toxicity, buffering, needles, nerve blocks, injection techniques, and risk areas and specific sites for injection. We will demonstrate how to prepare buffered lignocaine, practice use of Luer Lock and Luer Slip syringes with injection and infiltration on pig skin, and demonstrate injection sites with clinical video clips. We will also cover surface anatomy of trigeminal nerve branches and blocking these nerves.

Session 6b: Topical Treatments

Topical treatments are becoming more and more effective for certain lesions. In this session, we look at what works and what doesn't. We will review Fluorouracil, Imiquimod and Ingenol Mebutate, and look at the indications, application, contraindications and tips for use. We will also cover field versus specific lesion treatment. Clinical case studies will make up a key part of this session.

Session 3: Incision/Haemostasis

In this practical hands-on session, we will be covering punch and shave biopsies and use clinical videos to demonstrate proper techniques. As part of the practicals, we will cover mono and bipolar cautery with hands-on practicals and video demonstrations for effective cautery. We will cover the fire risk of cautery with alcohol and the safety aspects of pacemakers and other implanted electrical devices. We will also extend the proper shave technique to the HALO graft including marking out, dressing and aftercare.

Session 7: The Big Three

In this session, we look at the big three: BCC, SCC and melanoma. We look at the main types of BCC, their dermatoscopic features, margins, perineural invasion, radiotherapy treatment and other treatment modalities available. With SCC, we cover IEC differentiation, biopsy, aggressive and tame types, and the treatment modalities available. We also cover the various types of melanoma and look at margins, Breslow thickness, various biopsy methods, and when and what to refer.

Session 4:  Curettage/Cautery

Continuing from session 3, we will cover curettage and cautery with theory, clinical video and student practicals. We will look at appropriate sites, and discuss keloid and hypertrophic scar risks and appropriate lesions for this modality. Practicals for this session will be done on pig skin models. We will also cover dressings and aftercare for curettage and cautery, and cover the Medicare item numbers used. The cryotherapy segment will include safe handling of liquid nitrogen, clinical video, and consideration of appropriate sites for this modality.

Session 8: Case Management

In the final session, we summarise the learning outcomes with a series of case studies. Each case study includes clinical images from different locations and types of lesions. This session includes group discussion on the appropriate modality such as topical treatments, cautery, curettage, type of biopsy to be used, and excision.



Meet Your Instructors

Your instructors are widely regarded as some of the leading experts in the field of Skin Cancer Medicine and Dermatopathology, including:
A/Prof Cliff Rosendahl

Prof Cliff Rosendahl


Professor and Course Coordinator MMed (Skin Cancer) Program School of Medicine, The University of Queensland, Australia

Professor Cliff Rosendahl currently works in Brisbane as a primary care practitioner with a special interest in skin cancer. He also has an interest in research as the clinical developer and Director of the Skin Cancer Audit Research Database (SCARD). His other main area of research has been in evaluating dermatoscopic clues and artificial intelligence for the diagnosis of  skin malignancy in collaboration with colleagues at the Medical University of Vienna, Austria.  

Prof Rosendahl has published over 70 articles in peer-reviewed journals and authored/co- authored two textbooks. He has a busy schedule presenting to GPs in Australia and to GPs and dermatologists internationally.

Dr Simon Clark

Dr Simon Clark

MBChB FRCPA Specialist

Honorary Lecturer in Pathology, The University of Queensland

Dr Simon Clark runs the pathology component of the postgraduate certificate courses in skin cancer medicine at The University of Queensland and lectures in the Masters of Medicine course. He has been involved in dermatopathology education for more than 20 years, training registrars in dermatology, pathology and plastic surgery. More recently he has been active in GP education. One of the best known dermatopathologists in Australia, Simon was recently appointed a visiting professor in dermatology at the Tehran University of Medical Sciences.

Important Dates








Full payment on the day of registration


$530 x 4

Defer your payments over several months.

GP REGISTRARS: Doctors in training who are on a pathway to General Practice Registration through a recognised training provider receive a HealthCert Scholarship and save $500 on face-to-face certificate courses (two-day practical workshops) and $300 on online and hybrid certificate courses (one-day practical workshop with supporting online theory). This offer cannot be used in conjunction with the Early Bird special.



Upon registration, you will be able to access all learning contents immediately and complete the masterclass online.  

We offer a ‘start anytime online’ course structure, which gives flexible start and completion times for studies, as well as exam extensions, to fit in with busy schedules. You can enjoy the flexibility to study at your own pace, in your own time, within your home or office, and on your favourite mobile device. The modules are set up in such a way that you are not required to be online at specific times but can view and replay the video lectures at your convenience. With no travel, accommodation or out-of-office expenses incurred, you can build critical skills and tailor your career while working in a busy practice or raising a family.

What you get for your one-off investment:

  • 11 video lectures, including all content from the face-to-face masterclass.
  • All presentation slides available for download.


In order to meet the requirements of professional and academic learning, the masterclass assessment includes professional requirements and two online examinations.

  • Develop a one-page report/explanation of how you will use the learning from this masterclass in your professional work.
  • Compile a report listing the resource materials that you have collected to advance and apply your knowledge.

Online assessment

  • 88 knowledge questions based on a scenario of a medical practitioner undertaking special interest training.
    • 11 per module
      Example: The medical practitioner believes that 10% of the population … Is he correct?  Yes/No
  • 88 authentic scenario-based questions based on cases of patient care at a clinic
    • 11 per module
      Example: A patient arrives at your clinic with this problem …what should you do?  Multiple choice images based on patient cases.

The knowledge-based examination is worth 50 per cent and the application-based examination is worth 50 per cent. The overall pass mark is 80 per cent. It is therefore not possible to pass this masterclass on knowledge alone. Knowledge must be successfully applied to patient cases in order to pass.

HealthCert recommends completion of the assessment at your convenience within three months of the completion of the masterclass.

Certification and ACCREDITATION

DPMCL certificateUpon successful completion of the masterclass requirements, you will receive a certificate of attendance for the Dermatopathology Masterclass. To learn more about the delivery of certificates in Australia and overseas, please visit our FAQs.

RACGP: 30 CPD Activity points
      - PDP units: 5 Educational activity, 15 Performance review
     - MOPs points: 15

This masterclass:

  • Provides CPD points from the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP).
  • Provides PRPD points from the Australian Council of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM).
  • Is recognised by the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners (RNZCGP).
  • Is recognised by the Hong Kong College of Family Physicians (HKCFP). The HKCFP recognises all courses endorsed by the RACGP. Points are calculated differently.
  • Is a self-submitted activity in Dubai. The number of CPD points must be stated on the certificate. Please contact for more information.
  • Is a self-submitted activity in the UK. CPD events overseas, applicable to a doctor’s scope of practice, may be submitted for revalidation. Please confirm with your Responsible Officer.
  • Is a self-submitted activity in Canada through the College of Family Physicians of Canada. Category 1 points are reported as certified and Category 2 points are reported as non-certified. Contact for more information.
  • Meets World Federation of Medical Education standards.
  • Has been independently developed with subject specialists and does not receive education grants from any pharmaceutical company.