How to be a successsful dental student??

Discussion in 'Dental' started by ss2kj, Jun 13, 2008.

  1. ss2kj

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    Hi everyone,
    i need some advice about how to do well in dental schools. I received an admission at VCU school of dentistry (class of 2012), and the truth is that i'm not the best candidate you can find. in fact, with GPA of 3.27 and DAT of 19 i'm surprised myself. But anyways, can anyone tell me how to actually study and prepare for exams, boards, and so on and so forth? how do you guys manage your time? did you ever do group study? what were your mistakes and how did you fix it?? any point can help
    thanks
     
  2. ldsmbhc

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    The best advice I have is to find out what is most important to you. Once you figure that out then you can manage your time accordingly. My mistake in undergrad was not spending enough time with my family even though that was and is the most important thing to me. Sometimes you get caught up in the little things that don't matter that much. By the way, your scores are fine. Just remember there is always someone dumber than you:D.
     
  3. Brownstain

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    Definitely learn to pick your battles like posted above. I know people want to say time management is the key, but in dental school there is no time. So get a formula which works for you as far as studying and learn to identify your weaknesses. Most of all don't sacrifice your entire social life. It's easy to get into a rut of trying to study all the time in dental school, especially if you think you want to compete for a top rank spot. If you are going to aim high do it the right way, be friendly, help others, don't cheat or do shady things to put yourself ahead. Don't worry, some of the top people on my class had the worst stats. You'll be amazed how much things like grade inflation, test prep, and overall inability to practically function, and the drive of people comes into play with people in school.

    You've made it through almost 4 years of college with good grades. I think you know what works for you as far as preparing. The worst decision I ever made was trying to change my study habits because people told me there was a better way in professional school. You know yourself best and if your traditional ways don't work at first then switch things up, but by all means don't do a 180 to start off. Group study can help with some topics that are complete minutia when you want to bounce ideas or practical exams. Most of all learn to take criticism. People are going to correct your work all of the time. Listen to them! So many people got stubborn or thought that they were invisible in lab and then got a rude awakening. So listen to instructors and older students when they tell you something is wrong or a trick. Really listen to older students too, they've done everything before you and have some great hindsight. This is huge when they can tell you things like what is worth spending extra time studying and which classes are impossible no matter what or the final is a joke.

    And invest in a massage chair!
     
  4. ss2kj

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    Hey, thanks a lot. i guess you are right, spending all the time studying and sacrificing everything is not going to help. i learned that in a hard way in ugrad.
     
  5. dentheartthrob

    dentheartthrob DreamDMDweaver
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    sleep deprivation :sleep:
     
  6. blankguy

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    If you are sincere about being the best, get ready for social deprivation.
     
  7. youngmc27

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    Do your best and work hard and you will be fine. I am definately not the smartest student in my class but I am doing well thanks to dedication and time management.
     
  8. LaVidaDeAmreek

    LaVidaDeAmreek Med Business *****
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    just don't be that annoying student who constantly answers questions in class to prove to everyone else that they are somehow superior... don't argue with the professors, ask questions... but don't argue. just do what you have to do, and dont complain about it too much, because theres a thousand other people who would have wanted your seat in dental school.
     
  9. Saddleshoes

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    Advice from a very average dental student that became an outstanding dentist is this.......

    1) Attend every class and pay attention.
    2) Use every bit of lab time to develop your clinical skills.
    3) Be respectful to all your instructors, even the jerks.
    4) Never, lose sleep over any dental school issues.
    5) Always take Sunday off to go to church and have dinner with family/friend.
    6) Remember a C is OK at this level.
     
  10. JamieMac

    JamieMac Elite Member
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    Sounds like solid information...thanks!
     
  11. MONKEYBOY

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    This is the best thread I have seen. Thank you, plese keep the good wisdom coming.

    Starting D1 this fall, and welcome all the tips I can find.

    ciao
     
  12. DCRedskinsRule

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    I agree...this thread is filled with great insight. As a fellow D1 starting this fall, I am finding this advice to be really useful. Thanks again. :thumbup:
     
  13. Turnerjo13

    Turnerjo13 Ski Bum
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    I would say it is important to not stress out. If you don't get an A you are still going to be a dentist so relax, work hard and do your best but don't get stressed about it. Learn to take criticism. It is going to come and you need to be able to learn from it instead of getting angry. Also, when you are doing something think about it so you don't do anything stupid that you are going to regret.
     
  14. DentAZ

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    My brother graduated Case and he and his classmates always jokes that "D is for Dentist". Not the best advice, but funny.
     
  15. jackbauer!

    jackbauer! Guest

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    D is passing at Case????

    jb!:)
     
  16. Brownstain

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    Almost forgot...NO DENTCEST

    It's just an overall good policy to have because its a giant gossipy jr. high atmosphere and you're going to have to be around the other person for 4 years or so. I know people meet in dental school...but I would say just avoid it unless you think someone is "the one" you know like NEO. Matrix reference SNAP.


     
  17. bass for less

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    Great thread.. Hope all the incoming students will do well, including myself!
     
  18. vert

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    :laugh:
     
  19. ashleycameron

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    Hi, you are right.... Thinking all the time about study is not fair...
    Good sleep is very much necessary for every one....
     
  20. Lidopaine82

    Lidopaine82 Senior Member
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    no, you need at least a 70%
     
  21. HuyetKiem

    HuyetKiem Senior Member
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    Work, work and work. Spend your time as much as possible in the clinic admitting patient, seeing emergency or assisting the residents ... Your effort will be paid off right after graduation (-:
     
  22. JamieMac

    JamieMac Elite Member
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    Perhaps I'm a little dense, but what do you mean by this? Exposure to these situations will make you more competent or comfortable in these areas? Thanks.
     
  23. Shunwei

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    But he wasn't, according to the prophet :D
     
  24. SuperC

    SuperC SuperC DMD
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    HA!!!! I wish our professors had got this memo. We have been told time and time again, "You're in graduate school, you are expected to get A's"
    -C
     
  25. pmantz

    pmantz Member
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    Actually in grad school you can't get anything below a B and you have to write a dissertation. Technically we are still undergrad, we are in professional school not graduate school. That is what our biomedical science faculty tell us.
     
  26. reapply2007

    reapply2007 Senior Member
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    Exercise and watch what you eat. Sitting around for 12-15 hour days in class/in the library can really take its toll on the gluteus.
     
  27. Brownstain

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    easier said than done
     
  28. Shunwei

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    That is true. I think the term "Graduate School" is tossed around a little too loosely nowadays. Technically speaking, or as it is originally intended to be, that term refers to people who is pursuing a Ph.D., but now it seems to refer to any post-undergrad education. In my opinion, the proper term should be "Professional School."
     
  29. anamod

    anamod Senior Member
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    Just don't be a tool. Plain and simple. And don't believe all the B.S. they teach you in dental school. Learn how to socialize. If I was to hire an associate and he/she came to me bragging about their gpa and how many awards and published articles they had but where not very outgoing and uptight I would shred their application on the spot. On the the other hand if someone in the bottom 25% of their school applied and had charisma I would hire them on the spot.

    It's sad but the truth is you can be the greatest technical dentist but if you are social inept you will not do as a well as a crappy dentist with charisma for days.
     
  30. HuyetKiem

    HuyetKiem Senior Member
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    Both. You will learn some tricks from the residents for some complicated procedures.
     
  31. newsjunkie360

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    Thanks for all the advice everyone, it's much appreciated for the incoming D1, like myself.

    I especially thank those who say "be respectful" b/c FINALLY showing respect and kindness will get you far...of course all the hard work and studying too. :)

    :thumbup::thumbup::thumbup:
     
  32. ss2kj

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    Thanks everyone, for your advices, opinions, comments, and issues. this will help me a lot.
    One thing that I regret about my undergrad was that i didn't socialize with anyone at all. At the end, i was sitting all alone at the commencement with no friends, and couldn't wait for the ceremony to get over.
    If one thing that I'm going to do in dental school is to socialize and find new friends.
     
  33. TheDrewYouKnew

    TheDrewYouKnew Poster of the Year
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    You obviously misunderstood "her" reason for lying to him.

     
  34. Californian

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    ss2kj- your stat isn't great but did you do any extracurricular activities? can you explain what you have done?(reserach,shadowing,volunterring, etc.)
     
  35. ddsrealist

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    remember that nobody likes a gunner. So hang out with your class.
     
  36. informatique

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    are you guys really that busy? if i get into dental school this year then i was figuring i could make time to hit the gym at least 3-4 times a week at minimum.
     
  37. Kanowlees

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    Don't sweat not having stellar undergrad marks, they don't matter now. You are in just like the 4.0's and they worked alot harder, ha! It's a level playing field now...
     
  38. Brownstain

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    Just like what everyone else has mentioned it's all relative. You make your priorities and execute accordingly. Many people make it to the gym regularly during school, proximity and a free student facility also help. Just schedule it into your day and don't deviate. Alot of people look at 2hrs at the gym as 2hrs of wasted study time. I never thought that I would do this but yeah, it caught up to me and I did put studying over working out quite a bit. I kept up the 3-4 a week for a solid 2 months, then school picked up, having a gf which doesn't require me to look my best all the time, stress eating/no time to cook = Chipotle time, and well when I do school work for 15 hrs straight the last thing on my mind was waking up at 6am to get to the gym before class. I prefer watching Boston Legal and Nip Tuck over watching my abs. I started out finishing off my test days with a nice run, which later in the first year turned into skipping afternoon class to put in an 8hr shift at the bar. With little social time working out does get in the way of hanging out with people.
     
  39. ss2kj

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    Hey pal thanks. This really make me feel good about myself.
     
  40. ss2kj

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    Well, I worked in an oral surgery office for a year, shadowed a local dentist three times, and asked for recommendation letters from both of them. I also had a recommendation letter from pre-health (pre-dental) advisor committee which was very important. I worked on my personal statement and made it very strong (an argument of why i'll be a perfect candidate for dental school). In 2ndary application for VCU school of dentistry I explained why my stats where low (family problems, and such). so at the bottom line you need to focus on the school/s you wanna go, talk to a member of the admission committee, and get advice from them. this will help you alot. I also did research for two years, got published, and again asked my mentors to wirte me rocom. letters. I volunteered at the school's huspital, became a tutor at a local highschool, and prepared myself for an impressive interview.
    good luck
     
    #40 ss2kj, Jul 5, 2008
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2008
  41. Lurchdubious

    Lurchdubious the Homeless Ninja
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    congrats on VCU, ss2kj! it's gonna be a good time. nice thread!
     
  42. Sadie12

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