MS1: Use of BRS materials in 1st yr to study for class exams

basupran

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Every single med student has advised me against purchasing such material for the initial study of medicine. The BRS material seems pretty helpful as a review, but I was told that it would be a form of cheating that would hurt me in the long run. I was looking for some opinions on the use of these books during basic science years.
 

erin682

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Cheating!?!?! No I don't think so. Its just supplemental material in a more condensed form. And if you do study from BRS you have to study other things as well particularly class notes and the like. BRS is just an outline to help memorize and narrow down. I don't particularly use BRS a lot during the semester but you can be at the end of the semester when I have to take shelf exams over the entire subject I will use them. The alternative is to somehow study a pile of class notes that will likely be too thick to fit into a 4 inch binder. Its not cheating its smart.
 

lilmo

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board review series. i'm a big fan of BRS Physiology and BRS Anatomy. i'd highly recommend using them as supplemental materials. very high yield :thumbup: :thumbup:
 

DHMO

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Bigsheed920 said:
What is BRS..thanks.
BRS is Board Review Series--They are books that attempt to only cover the very relevant material for a given course, and usually do a pretty good job.

As for the cheating question--I don't know who told you that, but it is pretty ridiculous. I've found that using BRS and First Aid during classes is very helpful in getting a conceptual framework for the classes. Then, once you have a good idea of the subject as a whole, it becomes much easier to remember all the stupid/unimportant (but always tested) details that they put in the core notes. Also, as a previous poster stated, review books are a very good way to study for cumulative exams (i.e. shelf exams). I can't imagine that anyone studies class notes to study for the shelfs.
 

Fantasy Sports

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BRS is da bomb dot com. Ultimately, you only need a handful of textbooks during your first two years (Stedmans and Netters which are free if you join the medical societies, a Rohen's if you hate anatomy lab, Robbins Pathology, and as you get closer to clinics Harrisons). Of course, the last 2 aren't even THAT necessary, but since every doctor and his/her mom has it in their bookshelf, it wouldn't kill you to learn from the same texts they did.

Everything else, syllabus + BRS.
 

bigfrank

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BRS or HY books are very good for 2 important reasons.
1. Excellent review for course/shelf exams during M1-2 years.
2. Excellent review for Step I. If you've gone through them even once before, you'll be amazed at how much easier it is to recall the information.
 

fun8stuff

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basupran said:
Every single med student has advised me against purchasing such material for the initial study of medicine. The BRS material seems pretty helpful as a review, but I was told that it would be a form of cheating that would hurt me in the long run. I was looking for some opinions on the use of these books during basic science years.
I hope it wasn't a future classmate that told you this... sounds like they may be trying to 1up you... hehe .... "Yes, I cheated... I studied and hid the material in my brain"
 

erin682

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fun8stuff said:
I hope it wasn't a future classmate that told you this... sounds like they may be trying to 1up you... hehe .... "Yes, I cheated... I studied and hid the materialin my brain"
How dare you hide material in your brain. At my school that would be a clear violation of the honor code. I never hide material in my brain. On 2nd thought maybe thats been my problem all along......
 

8744

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basupran said:
Every single med student has advised me against purchasing such material for the initial study of medicine. The BRS material seems pretty helpful as a review, but I was told that it would be a form of cheating that would hurt me in the long run. I was looking for some opinions on the use of these books during basic science years.

I assure you, BRS review books are not cheating. If you knew the material in all of the BRS books you'd probably know more than most practicing physicians outside of their own specialties.

I cannot imagine how it could hurt you. If you're going to forget information you might as well forget the important stuff covered in BRS books rather than the trivia you will find in any 900 page textbook.

Thanks for sharing. The "BRS Books equals cheating" concept is the funniest thing I've heard on SDN in the last year. Might as well say "Lecture notes equal cheating" or "Looking at the pictures in textbooks equals cheating."
 

viper

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My advice.....get all the best books you can and then actually read the damn things. This is the only time you will ever sit down and read these things, you won't do this later. Buy and use books that help you learn and forget the rest of them. BRS has some great books - some better than others. Use the good ones and learn what you can, however you can. Sometimes the BRS books are concise on topics and if you ONLY read those then you might be cheating yourself - (I think that is what your friend meant, but as a supplement and to learn big high yield stuff - use and abuse those books). It doesn't matter how you learned it, it matters that you did. These books are sometimes better than class notes because they are written clearly and give you standard stuff (instead of useless info that a professor may have been interested in).
On First Aid ( I like that book ) - but I dont' think it's too helpful during med school - it's better for boards. During med school, use Step-Up - that book has basically gotten me through the first two years of med school.

Any other questions on books - check out http://www.gotmedbooks.com

Viper
 

katrinadams9

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I've used the BRS physiology and biochem. I now wish I'd had the BRS anatomy. I find them extremely useful, especially for review right before the exams. And the practice Q's at the end of each section are awesome!!
 

razorback831

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katrinadams9 said:
I've used the BRS physiology and biochem. I now wish I'd had the BRS anatomy. I find them extremely useful, especially for review right before the exams. And the practice Q's at the end of each section are awesome!!

I brought BRS (physio and Path) to class and took notes in it from lecture........worked quite well......
 

bigfrank

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I'm sure "cheating" was a poor way to say that this person thought that BRS/HY provided 'watered down' versions of medical topics, whatever that means; you know the type, the guy that reads Harrison's during the first 2 years and always scores just slightly below average on all the exams. :)