Cello

7+ Year Member
Sep 10, 2011
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Hey all, I have searched the forums and not found as much info as I'd hoped/expected so I'll ask here.

I am doing genetics this semester with physiology and chemistry II. I am having no problem with phys or chem, but genetics is really killing me. I'm finding that my usual study methods are not working for me. Reading the book, attending lectures, and going to discussions are simply not enough. It doesn't help that the professor doesn't touch on a lot of the material in the exams, and that the TAs are constantly undermining him by dismissing his teaching methods, but there's nothing I can do about that....

I feel like the leap from general biology to genetics was huge, and I'm not sure what I missed along the way. :confused: So, if anyone has any books they recommend, online videos, study techniques, or something that helped you get through genetics, please share it here. I hadn't anticipated this class being harder than physiology, but so far, it's much, much harder for me... I need as close to a 4.0 as possible to make up for a 3.3 GPA in my undergrad, so I'm obviously pretty worried about getting at least an A- in this class.

Also, anyone know how to use Bayes Theorem in genetics? Our book doesn't have a very comprehensive explanation of it and I haven't been able to find many good resources online to explain it. The professor who taught this same genetics course last semester hasn't even heard of it and couldn't help me... Our current professor doesn't want to be bothered with such trivial matters. Hopefully someone can point me to a good Bayes Theorem resource.

Thanks everyone!
 

LaughingGas

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May 17, 2010
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The best thing is to do lots and lots of practice problems!
:thumbup::thumbup:
Understand the main concepts, know when you should apply certain concepts to each questions, but as ttpharm stated, practice, practice, practice.
 
OP
Cello

Cello

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Sep 10, 2011
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Right, I do the practice problems, but I can't understand how the solutions manual came up with the answer on 25% - 30% of the problems. For example, I don't even understand Bayes' Theorem beyond the simplest of problems (one or two variables), so the advanced stuff where the solution manual spouts out some solution and gives little or no explanation doesn't help me. Practicing pedigrees, that's no problem, and I see how that's just repetition, but some of the statistical tools we're using, when I haven't yet taken statistics (I know that was an unfortunate mistake) are proving quite difficult. I get chi-square, but I don't understand some of the more abstract probability stuff like when something is B|A as opposed to A|B and how that changes the formula.

And thanks for your responses!
 

Msmouth

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Aug 13, 2010
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Try Schuams Genetics. It helped me with some of the concepts. Also watch videos. My instructor was really vague and would give exams with material that wasn't covered in class. I always stayed above the curve and glad there was a curve. Do you have a study buddy in class? It helps to do problems together with a whiteboard.
 

dentalWorks

Nights Watchmen
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Jun 25, 2009
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I HATED genetics with a passion.

Learning the lectures won't do squat here, rewritting "useless" class notes isn't helpful either. Because they lecture you in class, but the exam hits you hard with problem solving.

You have 3 options:
1) do every problem at the back of each chapter ( you need to have solutions manual)
2) go to TA's office hours and get additional problems and get help
3) drop the class... most dental curriculum don't offer genetics anyways (I think Columbia and Harvard take it, but other wise, most don't)
 
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Cello

Cello

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Sep 10, 2011
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Thanks a lot for your responses.

I have considered dropping, but at this point it would be a W and from what I understand adcoms see a W as 'weak' or some such thing. :p

I have a study buddy in every class except this one, the one I probably need it the most... haha. I agree on the class notes, so far they have been mostly worthless except to write down concepts that he says will definitely be on the exam for practice later.

The funny thing is, I work in a cancer research lab and we do crosses and PCR all the time. :laugh:
 

dentalWorks

Nights Watchmen
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Jun 25, 2009
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Sterling Hts, Mi
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Thanks a lot for your responses.

I have considered dropping, but at this point it would be a W and from what I understand adcoms see a W as 'weak' or some such thing. :p

I have a study buddy in every class except this one, the one I probably need it the most... haha. I agree on the class notes, so far they have been mostly worthless except to write down concepts that he says will definitely be on the exam for practice later.

The funny thing is, I work in a cancer research lab and we do crosses and PCR all the time. :laugh:
1 or 2 Ws here and there ain't gonna kill you.... but if you decide to stay in class, do ur best (one W or one bad grade isn't going to make nor break the application)

Utilize the TAs... I did back in my genetics, it helped me tremendously. Also see if you can find some students whom took this very class with the same professor and see if they can share with u their old exams.... alot of times, the problems simply repeat.

all the best