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is there anything i can do now

Discussion in 'Step I' started by chucky85, Dec 15, 2008.

  1. chucky85

    2+ Year Member

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    For those of you who have taken the boards is there anything I can do to prepare after only having completed one semester of med school. I'm an average student. I feel like if I work hard though I can hopefully get a 230 which is definitely above the national average. Is there anything I can do now to start preparing or have I just not learned enough yet?
     
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  3. AmyO

    AmyO Member
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    I think the best thing you can do for yourself now as a first year is to make sure you are learning the material well and thoroughly...not just cramming for the exam and forgetting it. You can start reading 1st Aid when you're studying but I wouldn't start annotating it yet (unless you are going to buy the most recent copy for when you start your hardcore boards studying a year from now). You haven't learned enough to start "studying for the boards" nor would that be productive since you won't take the exam for over a year and a half from now. Just make sure you are understanding the concepts thoroughly and integrating them well. I don't know exactly how your curriculum is arranged. Mine was organ-based so I would make sure I knew the physiology, pharmacology, pathology, etc of that organ system well and understood not only what but why since many USMLE questions are multiple-step reasoning questions not just memorization. Good luck!
     
  4. JeffLebowski

    JeffLebowski Just got Nard-dogged
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    Man this question has been asked about a million different times in a million different ways.
     
  5. str8flexed

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    If I were you I would get a copy of BRS Anatomy of something like that, and do all the practice questions on that. Also, on biochemistry, and whatever else you took. I found that I really only retain things if I do questions...and lots of them. First year stuff isn't as represented on the boards as second year stuff though, but still try to learn it very well so you don't have to review as much later.
     
  6. njbmd

    njbmd Guest
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    The best thing that you can do at this point is thoroughly learn your medical school coursework. You "review" for Step I but "learn" your coursework. You really can't do much of a review of what you haven't learned in the first place.

    Thoroughly master your courses and then your review for Step I will be more efficient and useful. Depending on how your coursework is organized, classical curriculum, system-based curriculum or integrated curriculum; will determine how much useful information you have at this point.

    Under a classical curriculum: Pathology, Pharm and Physio are the best represented subjects with Biochemistry, Behavioral Science/Biostats, Neuro(lots of this in Pharm) and Micro/Viro (lots of this in Path anyway) being the next most represented and Gross Anatomy being the least.

    Under systems-based, you can review the systems that you have already mastered if you are totally bored so that you head into next semester with a solid background. Under the integrated curriculum, the same applies but you don't have to go system by system.

    Any review done outside of prior mastery is not very useful and likely a waste of time. In short, review what you have mastered but not much more than that.
     
  7. TheDeanBear

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    This is a very pertinent advice for me too. Stupid question but because I've been using the two words 'learn' and 'review' almost interchangeably, is 'learning' is making sure there's nothing you don't know/understand and 'reviewing' making sure you don't forget anything you do know? like consolidation?

    And just out of curiosity, how is an integrated system arranged if it's not arranged by organ systems or discipline?

    Couple of random questions. Thanks (and apologies) in advance :oops:.
     
  8. AmyO

    AmyO Member
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    I would say learning is taking in new (or basically new as in you forgot everything about it) information, processing it, then integrating it. When learning: you are reading for knowledge, listening to lectures if applicable and taking notes, then after you have the information, you put it in a way that you understand it. Example, you get a lecture about porphyria cutanea tarda in class for the first time. Learning would be going home & reading, going over notes and figuring out what the heck your lecturer was talking about in class. Reviewing is simply reading over the basics of the information (such as glazing over the bulletpoints of porphyria cutanea tarda in FA) to keep the details fresh in your memory but if needed you could explain to a friend what porphyria is, the biochem behind it, signs & symptoms, tx, etc. You can't review (just read the bulletpoints) if you haven't learned (don't know the story behind the bulletpoints) the topic in the first place. I'm speaking from a systems-based curriculum btw. I felt like I just talked in a bunch of circles...whew
     

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