Medliorate

Improving medical students

“Things I did not do”

Posted by medliorator on April 10, 2008

Panda Bear MD recollects on his pre-clinical years:

1. Highlight. Not in one color or many. The BRS books and Powerpoint lectures are outlines anyway so it is pointless to highlight.

2. Take notes on notes and then produce written summaries of the notes from my notes, color-coding where appropriate. I did not make flash cards either.

3. Study in a group. Not once. I am not convinced at the utility of group studying. There is the potential for a lot of wasted time not to mention that dealing with other people’s learning styles can be distracting. I did not want to quiz and be quizzed by other people on material that I could learn on my own in a much shorter time seeing as I can read about ten times faster than I can talk.

4. Cram before a test. …at my school the tests covered about a month of material. If you haven’t got it on the day before the test, staying up late trying to fit it into short-term memory is only marginally effective. Suppose your cramming nets you a couple of correct answers that you would have otherwise missed. As our tests usually ran to about 200 questions, the real effect on your grade is almost undetectable and you’d probably do better if you came to the testing center fresh and alert after a good night’s sleep. Although it has been close to 25 years, the memories of those sleep deprived nights of futile cramming, nights which soon deteriorated into watching crappy television infomercials or the Reverend Jimmy Swaggart, are still vivid and I abhor losing sleep for any reason.

Medical School Pre-Clinical Years: Twenty Questions (Part 1) [Panda Bear, MD]

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