Medliorate

Improving medical students

The Post-Exam Post-Mortem

Posted by medliorator on February 6, 2008

After you get back your first exam, set aside 15 or 20 minutes to soak up its lessons and adjust your habits accordingly. Begin by asking yourself the following questions:

  1. What did I do right?  What note-taking and study strategies served you well
  2. What was a waste of time?  Which strategies took up time but did not help?
  3. What did I miss?  Where were you caught off guard? What type of question were you not prepared for?  What type of material did you miss in your review?

Next, lay out, in detail, the rules for the study system that you’ll follow for the remainder of the semester. Make sure this system includes the tactics you listed in your answer to (1) and excludes the tactics mentioned in your answer to (2). (This sounds obvious, but many students get so comfortable with certain study rituals that they have a hard time abandoning them, even after they’ve identified them as not helping.)

Most important, think hard about your answer for (3). Then ask yourself what’s the most efficient habit you could add to your study arsenal that would fill in those gaps. Add this to your system.

Monday Master Class: How to Peform a Post-Exam Post-Mortem [Study Hacks]

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