SECOND SEMESTER OF MED SCHOOL: REVIEW AND TIPS


tumblr_mouuvpR0MA1qinh1vo1_500Courses:

Physiology (every day)
Biochemistry (every day)
Genetics
Neuroscience
Research Methods

Summary:

The schedule this time around was much more relaxing than the first due to a number of factors. The first being that instead of having class 8-5pm every day, 2 days of the week we finished at 3pm, and often on the other days, our profs would get through material faster than expected and let us out early. This was great because it gave us time to breath after the rigours of first semester, and adjust to the new course load. Unfortunately, the down side of having more free time is that it can lead to a lack of productivity – when you don’t have enough time for work, you make every minute count. When there is an *excess* of time (**because it was hardly an excess, but rather a few extra hours a week), one feels like certain tasks can be put off until later (ie. studying). Secondly, having an entire semester behind me was a nice reassurance that I could make it through this. In first semester, I was constantly wondering, can I really pull this off? And having that sense of accomplishment really helped my mentality going into semester 2.

Overall, I used my extra time to get back into exercising and a proper meal plan. I regained all the muscle I had lost over the past 4 months, and upped my squat from 20lbs, back to 95lbs 🙂 Exercising was another reason I found this semester more manageable because I was consciously eliminating a lot of unnecessary stress at the gym 3-4 times each week. My friends also felt more relaxed, and so we spent a lot more weekends enjoying a night out at the local bars and clubs which was tons of fun!

Tips:

  • If you can, study from the Kaplan biochemistry and physiology videos, they contributed almost entirely to my success in both of those courses, and highlighted every detail required to know for the Step 1 exam. I CANNOT STRESS HOW USEFUL THEY ARE!!!
  • BRS physiology was also extremely useful for the course, and the Guyton practice questions were very difficult but great for testing yourself. I’d say the Guyton textbook is a bit too much to stress yourself with, but a great reference point when you have questions that didn’t get answered in class – it entails everything in intricate detail 
  • For research methods, I mostly studied from First Aid in the behavioural science section. This YouTube channel was also helpful in summarizing the main ideas nicely.
  • All I can say for neuroscience is…pray that you have a good prof. If you don’t, study the Kaplan videos or Dr. Najeeb! Also, USMLE questions…every day.
  • Everything you need to know for genetics is covered in the First Aid biochemistry section, as only a small unit of medical genetics actually covers patterns of inheritance 

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