Nov 14, 2012
36
2
Status
Optometry Student
Hi all,

I'm a first year OD student and I'm super confused on my exam scores. My friends all get better grades than I do and I study waay more than them. The past few exams, they get high B's and A's and I've been getting C's :thumbdown:...It's so frustrating because I spend soo much more time studying than they are. :confused:

My study techniques consist of: reading the notes, re-writing notes, highlighting, reading outloud, working on problems (if they're are any). I don't know what else to do! :bang:

Do you guys have any tips? I'm desperate! I really want to bring up my grades!

Thanks in advance!
 
Jan 1, 2012
31
0
Status
Pre-Optometry
I'm only starting optometry this coming fall, but I have had the same experience as an undergraduate. To be completely frank with you, there are just people out there who are smarter than you. We have all encountered someone who seems to just breeze through school and ace everything, while you're staying up late at night trying to get the last bit of information in your mind. My advice is to stop comparing yourself to others. Do the best you can and if it is not enough, then maybe you are not cut out for it.

Regarding study tips, I suggest you do not rewrite your notes. From personal experience, rewriting notes take way too much time. With so much stuff to remember, you have to be efficient with your time.

Lastly, RELAX. Maybe a little unwinding will improve your ability to focus and to retain information. Sometimes, we all just need to kick back and give ourselves a break.
 
OP
O
Nov 14, 2012
36
2
Status
Optometry Student
I'm only starting optometry this coming fall, but I have had the same experience as an undergraduate. To be completely frank with you, there are just people out there who are smarter than you. We have all encountered someone who seems to just breeze through school and ace everything, while you're staying up late at night trying to get the last bit of information in your mind. My advice is to stop comparing yourself to others. Do the best you can and if it is not enough, then maybe you are not cut out for it.

Regarding study tips, I suggest you do not rewrite your notes. From personal experience, rewriting notes take way too much time. With so much stuff to remember, you have to be efficient with your time.

Lastly, RELAX. Maybe a little unwinding will improve your ability to focus and to retain information. Sometimes, we all just need to kick back and give ourselves a break.
Thanks. What would you recommend for study tips if not for rewriting notes?
 

PinkCupcake

All Hail the Queen
Oct 6, 2012
56
1
Status
Optometry Student
Try studying in a group. That always works for me. Just make sure you pick good people to study with. :)
 

artiSUN

10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Sep 2, 2007
41
0
Status
Optometrist
Your school should provide tutors (at least most schools do, i believe). Find a good tutor who can explain the material well enough for you to get a good grasp on it.

I also found that if I can actually explain the material and answer questions that other students ask, it solidified my knowledge of it. If I had trouble answering questions, that pointed out the material I probably had to spend more time on. This is where working in a group provides such opportunities. A good mix of classmates who are good at quizzing as well as some who are at the same level or maybe struggling a little more than yourself. Some can feel more pressure if you're being quizzed, but less so when someone is asking because they have no clue.

When taking notes, try to focus on pertinent points and pay attention to what the instructors emphasize.

Remember, whether you graduate with A's and B's or B's and C's, you'll all be doctors one day and many of the most successful doctors aren't the ones who got straight A's, but have a great chair side manner and know how to treat their patients well and efficiently. Just stay off academic probation, learn to look at the big pictures (especially when your curriculum becomes more clinic-based) and keep up with the material. Things will start to 'click' soon enough.
 
Last edited:
Sep 29, 2012
15
0
Status
Optometry Student
Honestly, get more sleep/exercise and be prepared for class. The initial exposure of something is when it will be encoded in your brain and if you are not properly rested as well as in a good mental state, you will not retain it.

Not to be a complete ******* but I see people so stressed out in classes and laugh because they think that by studying more than others, they will make up for lack of well-being in other areas of their lives, which obviously effect their studies. Buena suerte.

Also, build a realtionship with a higher being....whatever it may be as this will enhance your entire life.
 

20DOC20

7+ Year Member
Jun 19, 2010
200
23
Status
Optometrist
This may sound odd, but I found that eating popcorn and hot black tea with a scoop of sugar helped me memorize things more quickly ... er ... with the tv on (low volume) also. I'd go: read two paragraphs, handful of popcorn, sip of tea, watch 10 minutes of Star Trek Voyager and continue.

I drove my roomates nuts. But it worked for me.

Study groups annoyed me because I'd start having unkind thoughts about my classmates such as, "What a bunch of morons." or something of that nature. So I studied best alone.

I had really high board scores, like 95th percentile, but my grades were not good enough to graduate with distinction. I'm not sure why that was. Maybe it was because I knew that my graduate grades meant nothing, really, and that the big boys running residency programs looked at board scores with greater interest.

Clinically, I was really good at stuff like BIO when fellow classmates couldn't even hold the 20D lens still, or even correctly. I was also really, really good at retinoscopy when the 4-point students would be growling frustrations when doing it. I'm so good at it that don't even need an autorefractor. I have one for reassuance and for kids, but if it were to die tomorrow, I have my Welch Allyn retinoscope. (WA makes best retinoscopes).

So you may find LATER ON when you're in clinic, that you may blow them out of the water with a necessary skill. Or better yet ... you may have people skills where the smarties don't. And basically, in this profession, he with the people skills makes the most money!

What's funny is that there was this group of guys in our class, four of them, maybe five, who were drunk all through OD school. Most had bad grades, even worse than I, and they didn't even do that well on the boards. Each and every one of them are rich now because they'd developed the people skills needed to succeed. Looking back, maybe I should've partied more and relaxed.

Not that I'm suggesting you substitute beer for the hot sugary tea ... :) And the type of tea matters! I learned best using Red Rose black tea. Not decaf! Not Lipton. Plus you can look forward to collecting a trinket in each box.
 
OP
O
Nov 14, 2012
36
2
Status
Optometry Student
This may sound odd, but I found that eating popcorn and hot black tea with a scoop of sugar helped me memorize things more quickly ... er ... with the tv on (low volume) also. I'd go: read two paragraphs, handful of popcorn, sip of tea, watch 10 minutes of Star Trek Voyager and continue.

I drove my roomates nuts. But it worked for me.

Study groups annoyed me because I'd start having unkind thoughts about my classmates such as, "What a bunch of morons." or something of that nature. So I studied best alone.

I had really high board scores, like 95th percentile, but my grades were not good enough to graduate with distinction. I'm not sure why that was. Maybe it was because I knew that my graduate grades meant nothing, really, and that the big boys running residency programs looked at board scores with greater interest.

Clinically, I was really good at stuff like BIO when fellow classmates couldn't even hold the 20D lens still, or even correctly. I was also really, really good at retinoscopy when the 4-point students would be growling frustrations when doing it. I'm so good at it that don't even need an autorefractor. I have one for reassuance and for kids, but if it were to die tomorrow, I have my Welch Allyn retinoscope. (WA makes best retinoscopes).

So you may find LATER ON when you're in clinic, that you may blow them out of the water with a necessary skill. Or better yet ... you may have people skills where the smarties don't. And basically, in this profession, he with the people skills makes the most money!

What's funny is that there was this group of guys in our class, four of them, maybe five, who were drunk all through OD school. Most had bad grades, even worse than I, and they didn't even do that well on the boards. Each and every one of them are rich now because they'd developed the people skills needed to succeed. Looking back, maybe I should've partied more and relaxed.

Not that I'm suggesting you substitute beer for the hot sugary tea ... :) And the type of tea matters! I learned best using Red Rose black tea. Not decaf! Not Lipton. Plus you can look forward to collecting a trinket in each box.

Haha this made me laugh. Maybe I'm just trying too hard and I need to relax a little more. Thank you :)
:)
 

OpticalBlackOut

10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Sep 16, 2008
410
54
Status
Optometrist
You've asked this in four separate threads now??!

Just relax and learn more about the business of optometry as your grades don't even matter that much.
 
OP
O
Nov 14, 2012
36
2
Status
Optometry Student
just trying to get more study tips and learn how other people study to see if it'd work for me jeez
 
I hate to break it to you, but your friends are likely smarter than you. I sent you 2 LOOOOOONG pm's with all my tips and ideas last semester and I made deans list. Maybe revisit your PM box. Sometimes you have to be willing to put in more work if you don't get it right away.
 
OP
O
Nov 14, 2012
36
2
Status
Optometry Student
I hate to break it to you, but your friends are likely smarter than you. I sent you 2 LOOOOOONG pm's with all my tips and ideas last semester and I made deans list. Maybe revisit your PM box. Sometimes you have to be willing to put in more work if you don't get it right away.
Completely forgot about those! I will have a look at them. Thanks again Blondiechick919
 
Nov 2, 2012
76
0
Status
Hi all,

I'm a first year OD student and I'm super confused on my exam scores. My friends all get better grades than I do and I study waay more than them. The past few exams, they get high B's and A's and I've been getting C's :thumbdown:...It's so frustrating because I spend soo much more time studying than they are. :confused:

My study techniques consist of: reading the notes, re-writing notes, highlighting, reading outloud, working on problems (if they're are any). I don't know what else to do! :bang:

Do you guys have any tips? I'm desperate! I really want to bring up my grades!

Thanks in advance!
Maybe your friends are smarter than you but maybe they aren't THAT much smarter than you. Chances are your studying inefficiently. To me rewriting notes and highlighting (unless its only in moderation and happens to be the most critical information being highlighted) is a waste of time. The time you spend rewriting the notes which is probably several hours, isn't worth what you get out of it. Reading the notes and saying them out load seems more effective because your using two senes to learn, sight and hearing. Plus you'd be able to go through your notes several more times doing this method than your writing one. I actually had a friend ask me how I did so well on my A&P tests because she said she spent lots of time studying but couldn't make the same grades I did. She explained that she reviewed the notes and rewrote them. I told her that at least for me, writing the notes is a waste of time and you don't get much out of it and that all I did was review the notes over and over. The next time we had a test, she decided not to rewrite her notes to study and to just review them for the same amount of time she usually studies for and she got one of the highest grades in the class.

Also, a professor told me in my microbiology class (one of my hardest undergrad courses I had) that if your what they call a "highlighter freak" who has different colored highlighters and always highlights things that it probably wouldn't help us in his course because it required "real" studying. Idk if he was right about that or not but I rarely use them and if I do it's for the major points. To me highlighting can be effective but when people get highlighter crazy and start highlighting everything in their notes and not looking back at those important points, it loses its value..

Again, I don't know how you study but these are things that may be wasting your valuable study time or decreasing the quality of studying your getting.

P.S. I by no means consider myself to be "smart," maybe above average. Just by reviewing and reviewing my notes so that they were embedded in my head and either youtubing or going to a tutor to explain any concepts I didn't understand, I have been able to recieve the highest test scores in some of the hardest classes with over 70+ students in them.
 
Last edited:

Mewcakes

SCO c/o 2014
Feb 10, 2010
421
4
Mewing at cakes
Status
Optometry Student
I'm one of those people that rewrote notes. I would take notes in class and type them up later that day/week with whatever extras I gleaned from the actual lecture in a bullet point/outline format. I bold key terms and add pictures to clarify the concept.

If you're going to do this, the key is to keep up with it every week. Don't just spend a whole weekend doing 5 weeks worth of notes for an exam on Tuesday. If you keep up with it, then you can better appreciate what your doctors present in following lectures and you can cement the understanding a little bit better when you do the notes shortly thereafter. Then when it's time to study, you can spend the whole weekend reading through the notes that you already typed and already understand.

I'm so type A and I stress out a lot, so no amount of exercise and relaxation is going to help me, that's just the way I am. Know who you are and figure out what works for you. What works for me may not work for you, but you'll never know until you try it! Good luck!
 
OP
O
Nov 14, 2012
36
2
Status
Optometry Student
Maybe your friends are smarter than you but maybe they aren't THAT much smarter than you. Chances are your studying inefficiently. To me rewriting notes and highlighting (unless its only in moderation and happens to be the most critical information being highlighted) is a waste of time. The time you spend rewriting the notes which is probably several hours, isn't worth what you get out of it. Reading the notes and saying them out load seems more effective because your using two senes to learn, sight and hearing. Plus you'd be able to go through your notes several more times doing this method than your writing one. I actually had a friend ask me how I did so well on my A&P tests because she said she spent lots of time studying but couldn't make the same grades I did. She explained that she reviewed the notes and rewrote them. I told her that at least for me, writing the notes is a waste of time and you don't get much out of it and that all I did was review the notes over and over. The next time we had a test, she decided not to rewrite her notes to study and to just review them for the same amount of time she usually studies for and she got one of the highest grades in the class.

Also, a professor told me in my microbiology class (one of my hardest undergrad courses I had) that if your what they call a "highlighter freak" who has different colored highlighters and always highlights things that it probably wouldn't help us in his course because it required "real" studying. Idk if he was right about that or not but I rarely use them and if I do it's for the major points. To me highlighting can be effective but when people get highlighter crazy and start highlighting everything in their notes and not looking back at those important points, it loses its value..

Again, I don't know how you study but these are things that may be wasting your valuable study time or decreasing the quality of studying your getting.

P.S. I by no means consider myself to be "smart," maybe above average. Just by reviewing and reviewing my notes so that they were embedded in my head and either youtubing or going to a tutor to explain any concepts I didn't understand, I have been able to recieve the highest test scores in some of the hardest classes with over 70+ students in them.
These were awesome suggestions. I'm def going to try them out - thanks!
 
OP
O
Nov 14, 2012
36
2
Status
Optometry Student
I'm one of those people that rewrote notes. I would take notes in class and type them up later that day/week with whatever extras I gleaned from the actual lecture in a bullet point/outline format. I bold key terms and add pictures to clarify the concept.

If you're going to do this, the key is to keep up with it every week. Don't just spend a whole weekend doing 5 weeks worth of notes for an exam on Tuesday. If you keep up with it, then you can better appreciate what your doctors present in following lectures and you can cement the understanding a little bit better when you do the notes shortly thereafter. Then when it's time to study, you can spend the whole weekend reading through the notes that you already typed and already understand.

I'm so type A and I stress out a lot, so no amount of exercise and relaxation is going to help me, that's just the way I am. Know who you are and figure out what works for you. What works for me may not work for you, but you'll never know until you try it! Good luck!
Thanks Mewcakes! I will def try out all of these new suggestions!