Question from MS-1

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SeventhSon

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Hey guys,

I have been starting to read this forum sporadically to kind of get myself acquainted with step 1. One of the consistent pieces of advice I have received is to make sure you learn all the concepts the first time around in class.

My question is, does anyone have advice for me regarding any habits I should get into now in my studying as an MS-1, as to facilitate remembering things better (or at least being able to relearn faster) for the boards?

Thanks.
 

surprisedgirl

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one thing i wish i did first year was read the relevant material in first aid and any other review book you plan on using for board prep...like BRs physio if your school does physio first year. This way anything that doesn't seem to be complete in FA you can clarify and annotate, and also the second time you go through it, it'll be familiar to you and things might come back better.
 

fakin' the funk

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My question is, does anyone have advice for me regarding any habits I should get into now in my studying as an MS-1, as to facilitate remembering things better (or at least being able to relearn faster) for the boards?

My advice would be the opposite from the above.

I feel that learning the concepts during 1st and 2nd years is key to being able to remember the random facts and associations you have to know for Step 1.

So, I recommend reading big, fat textbooks like Robbins so that you know the concepts of disease pathogenesis and physiology quite well.

An example of this is: there (apparently) are lots of diagrams in the physiology questions on Step 1. It's knowing the concepts of what those diagrams represent, rather than having memorized certain diagram shapes, that will help you.

All this being said, do skim the relevant portion of FA when you are learning in class a certain organ system or physiology section.
 

lord_jeebus

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Hello again SeventhSon,

If you learn the concepts with the depth that you get at UCSD you will be fine. On a conceptual level, the questions on Step 1 are much easier than some of the things they ask in OP/ERM/POP.

The only thing I did during first year that was useful later was some flash cards I made for POP (Pharm for the non-UCSD crowd).

The only boards review book I purchased during first year was BRS Physiology. It's pretty good for OP and ERM, although insufficient on its own for those courses.
 

SkylineMD

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contrary to a prior poster's opinion, you should NOT be reading big robbins at this stage in the game. You don't know enough and are not ready to learn the pathophysiology on the level to grasp what Robbins will be talking about. Your main goal should be to understand the concepts as most people have been talking about and getting familiar with books that you will be using for board studying. Look through the newest copy of FA if you don't have one and start reading the pertinent sections while writing notes to clarify any concepts that may seem unclear in FA. This way when you begin reviewing for boards, you are familiar with the books you will be using.
 

SeventhSon

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Thanks for everyone's advice. I did get BRS physiology. I find it useful to skim as a quick overview before hitting the syllabus/textbook, and imagine it will be a good refresher, but I find the questions utterly worthless.

I almost bought big robbins but decided to hold off and got a Merck manual instead, because I started reading robbins and realized I didn't understand the anatomy well enough to make it a useful read (we dont do anatomy first year hee). I would always use it as a reference... I find reading big books cover to cover is worthless. I do think if I read it in small blocks to supplement the blocks of physiology, it would conceivably help a lot, but I decided to go with the merck manual for now... it sucks that there are no pictures, but the language is much more appropriate from what I've read.
 

Teejay

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Thanks for everyone's advice. I did get BRS physiology. I find it useful to skim as a quick overview before hitting the syllabus/textbook, and imagine it will be a good refresher, but I find the questions utterly worthless.

I almost bought big robbins but decided to hold off and got a Merck manual instead, because I started reading robbins and realized I didn't understand the anatomy well enough to make it a useful read (we dont do anatomy first year hee). I would always use it as a reference... I find reading big books cover to cover is worthless. I do think if I read it in small blocks to supplement the blocks of physiology, it would conceivably help a lot, but I decided to go with the merck manual for now... it sucks that there are no pictures, but the language is much more appropriate from what I've read.
Have you checked out baby robbins. Its great and more handy and contains almost everything in the big robbins in a concised way.
 
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