Studying: How many hours a day?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by NubianPrincess, Aug 14, 2001.

  1. NubianPrincess

    NubianPrincess Perpetually Bored

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2001
    Messages:
    12,640
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status:
    Medical Student
    I did mediocre at NYU but now that im taking being pre-med more seriously, I really want to do well and get some of those awsome stats that some of you guys post. How many hours a day should I spend in the library in addition to the time spent on required class assignments?
     
  2. Thread continues after this sponsor message. SDN Members do not see this ad.

  3. sandflea

    sandflea Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2001
    Messages:
    791
    Likes Received:
    1
    how long a person must study is entirely an individual issue. you should study until you have mastered the material--whether this takes multiple marathon study sessions or just an hour a day, do whatever it is that you need to do to succeed.

    i'm not sure this is a question anybody here can answer for you.
     
  4. Sonya

    Sonya Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2001
    Messages:
    893
    Likes Received:
    0
    umm. I used to.. and still do keeps stats of how much i study for classes. for most of my upper division bio classes, it has been 5-5.5 hrs/hrs of class. meaning, if the class meets 3 hours a week, i need to study on average 15-16.5 hrs a week. that usually that's gotten 3.8 avg. my engineering classes took a little less time. and usually there will be one tough class a semester which takes 6 to 7 hrs/hr.

    and, i'm really slow i think. I DOUBT highly doubt others put that much... i haven't figured how people manage 20 units, and still a good gpa.

    but, really speaking, study till you master it. it depends a lot on the individual, how good you are at getting the grade, and absorbing material, and what class it is, and what school.
    oh, how much besides assignments? well, that depends everything on the class. in upper division classes you'll often find there are no assignment, just exams.
    -sonya
     
  5. BeckyG

    BeckyG Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2001
    Messages:
    270
    Likes Received:
    1
    I agree with sandflea. But, I would add this: my orgo professor used to tell us that (for us to do well) he expected us to spent 3 hours of studying for every hour we were in class. So, if you had 3 one-hour lectures a week, he thought we should be studying at least 9 hours per week. I think it's all very individual, though, depending on the person and the class. For biochem, I studied 1-2 hours per night for 2 weeks before an exam (to memorize pathways) and would spend 4-5 hours per problem set. For genetics or a general bio class, I was able to cram more toward the end and definitely spent less total time on the subject. Figure out what works for you - with your stated dedication, you should do just fine. Good luck!
     
  6. Just my two cents: I've found that it's best to study the material until it seems like "old news" and is nearly effortless. In my experience, *knowing* something at home with time to think and knowing something during an exam with nearly NO time to think, are two totally different things. To answer your question directly: I study about 25-30 hours per week while taking 14-15 units (all science). Much less if they're humanities courses. But I think the most important thing is to not try to ever "squeeze by" because by the time you find out it's not enough it's too late. If you want a 90% study to get a 97%. This has worked for me and I've been able to keep a 3.94gpa and I would NOT consider myself overly smart but I do enjoy the sciences. Hope this helps. Good luck and keep your goal fresh in your mind.
     
  7. Sonya

    Sonya Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2001
    Messages:
    893
    Likes Received:
    0
    no those are the people who i've never been able to figure out how they do it...
     
  8. fishtolive

    fishtolive Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2001
    Messages:
    330
    Likes Received:
    0
    it depends on the class but ggoing into each semester i do this...prioritize.

    some classes will require lots of time (orgo, your bio classes) while others will require minimal effort.

    as a premed, science is your priority so this works out...get a feel for what works best for you...study styles, etc. that work and use them as often as possible.

    start studying for exams 2 weeks before so you are in exam mode way ahead of time...you may not have all the material yet, but the majority of it will be mastered if you do it this way.

    in total, i'd say it averages out to at least 3-5 hours every day but the S.D. on this is huge...some days I'll have the time and study for 8 to 10 hours...during lulls or easy weeks i might have days where i study only 2 hours...as long as you are on top of material, and preferably AHEAD (that is, read before lecture) you should be fine.

    and what brhill said about old news is absolutely right...most exams i've had in college, i've been so prepared that i walk out early and laugh and break the curve...people say, wow you must have crammed last night and i tell them i went to a concert or something...that's the way to do it in my opinion...you really cannot LEARN anything the night before...you can get A's cramming (i did it last semester when i was doing MCAT studies) but you cannot learn it unless you're super human...so, give yourself time and you won't have to put in huge amounts of time, just consistent amounts of time...that's it

    be consistent and study every night even if you don'e HAVE to!
     
  9. moo

    moo 1K Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2000
    Messages:
    1,423
    Likes Received:
    6
    I echo the others. It all depends on you and the class. In organic I studied easily 20-25 hours a week for my B-/B. In my math and physics classes, I study A LOT less and get A's. Go figure.
     
  10. Legend

    Legend Super Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2001
    Messages:
    860
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    I started studying since last week maybe one hour a day--just verbal. But, I took April MCAT and had studied for a month (1 hour a day plus my courses).
    Even though it is hard to believe, I don't see any point studying. As I walked out of April MCAT, I felt bad because I would have done the same without studying at all.
    I found BS extremely hard/weird because it was purely reading comprehension(like verbal)which did not require any technical concepts.
    I was really pissed.

    Anyways, three more days.. Good luck !!
     
  11. SeeGulz

    SeeGulz Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2001
    Messages:
    220
    Likes Received:
    0
    In college, I kept a 3.99 as a non-science major, but at a very high cost. I studied 7 days a week, for much or most of each day. I would go to sleep between 6-8 am, and wake up for class about 10 on the days I had class. I would take 20 minute power naps on the floors of the cafeteria, in the library stacks, and at the back of the classroom while waiting for my next class to start. When exams came around, I would study 17 or 18 hours a day. I became very sick after most midterm and final periods.

    I did have the luxury of knowing my grade before ever took the exam, but when it was all said and done, I think I learned less than people who studied less or got B's. I didn't allow myself to enjoy the subjects or immerse myself in them, and I almost feel like dong it all over again because they were all, for one reason or another, worthwhile.

    Grades are important when it comes to post graduate work, no doubt. But keep it in perspective. Try very hard to maintain an interest in all your subjects. Focus on the main points first, and once you have a complete understanding of those main points, the details will adhere to them. For me, if I read something three times, I will know it well enough to get the A. Some people might need only one or two readings. Find out what works for you, but try not to highlight during your first reading. I spent a lot of time coloring my textbooks yellow. I should have just soaked them. Now I don't highlight at all. On my second reading, I put down post-it flags next to the key points. I only allow myself 20-30, so when they run out I quickly go back to the marked passages, skim them, and remove the flag. Whatever you do, strive to study efficiently, not excessively. Take a day off now and then, go for walks on your study breaks, and push yourself, but not too much. Always be your own advocate. Sorry for rambling ... Good luck to you.
     
  12. mongoose

    mongoose Banned
    Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2000
    Messages:
    1,067
    Likes Received:
    2
    I think some of these posters have Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders. Some of you say you study over 10 hours a day! Damn, take a step back and enjoy yourself for a change...life does not begin or end in the library!
     
  13. kreno

    kreno Candy Man

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2001
    Messages:
    661
    Likes Received:
    1
    I have always preferred cramming. I don't mean to sound like the charlatin here... but, in all honestly, it works best for me. Not for the MCAT, of course. But for all my other classes - including science courses. I guess it is all up to the individual. For example, during orgo i'd start studying two days before the exam and just study all day long, for like 11 hours, and then the next day 11 hours, and i've always been successful. More importantly, believe it or not, i learn best like that - don't ask me why, but i do...

    leon
     
  14. SeeGulz

    SeeGulz Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2001
    Messages:
    220
    Likes Received:
    0
    Mongoose: In my case, you are very correct.
     
  15. Okay, I do think that ten hours per day or more could be excessive...but I just wanted to say that, as lame as this might sound, some people actually enjoy studying. For those that think of school as a chore, yes I think taking that much time out for something you don't really like is a waste and/or unhealthy...but for some people, myself included, school IS enjoyment and the time spent on IT is time spent on one's self. The only thing I hate about school is the grade aspect. The studying (i.e., learning) is more of a hobbie than a job.

    Dorkily Yours,
    Brooke
     
  16. Thread continues after this sponsor message. SDN Members do not see this ad.

  17. turtleboard

    turtleboard SDN Advisor

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 1999
    Messages:
    1,594
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    As others have mentioned, the amount of study required for success is entirely dependent on the way the particular student learns. When I was an NYU undergraduate, I studied somewhere between four and five hours a day and maybe double that on the weekends. I did OK, but not stellar.
     
  18. fishtolive

    fishtolive Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2001
    Messages:
    330
    Likes Received:
    0
    oh, i forgot my most important study tip.
    now this is extremely corny and may sound stupid, but when i am bogged down with work, i take a shower, clear my head, and as i study i do one basic thing...smile!

    if you smile while you study, you will begin to believe you are actually enjoying it...and you are successful when you like something (or, in this case, pretending to like it)...try it...everybody i've ever suggested this to was suprisingly pleased.
     
  19. NubianPrincess

    NubianPrincess Perpetually Bored

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2001
    Messages:
    12,640
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status:
    Medical Student
    Thanks for the replies, although now im a little nervous. I never imagined how much time it can take to do well in science classes, although I do love them.
     
  20. gpannu

    gpannu Member

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2001
    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey

    I'm Like one of the other fellows on this post. I just cram. Although this may not be effective it works for me. I think you should realize that everyone has different learning styles. Some people need to study 8 hours a day other students do not. The main point is you should study very hard when you are studying the quality is important not the quantity. Seconldy, go to class. I have found that majority of the material I am tested on is from the course notes not the excessive detail in the text. I am a bio major and belive memerozing course notes is much easier than the text. Good Luck!!!
     
  21. SeeGulz

    SeeGulz Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2001
    Messages:
    220
    Likes Received:
    0
    fishtolive: It does sound corny, but I like it :)
     
  22. TwoSteveSquared

    TwoSteveSquared Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2001
    Messages:
    318
    Likes Received:
    0
    WOW, all this time I thought I wasn't as smart as the gunners. Now I figure I'm just lazy. Got a 3.5, never studied more than 10 hours a week, even for finals week. Hell, if I had a crappy prof, I didn't even go to class. Homework? There's no homework in college.

    Of course, since I breezed through undergrad stress free, it's all coming back to haunt me as I send in secondaries thinking: will I get an interview? Yep, probably, just not at a top 10. See ya gunners in residency. ;)


    LIVE YOUR LIFE. YOU ONLY GET ONE!!!
     
  23. saimabean5

    saimabean5 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2001
    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    0
    i think the best way to study is not to study too much, once before an orgo exam, i went to see the nets vs. pacers (guess who won?). I had so much fun that i was up and ready to kill that exam. and that was the least studying i ever did and i got an A!! :D
     
  24. kreno

    kreno Candy Man

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2001
    Messages:
    661
    Likes Received:
    1
    i hope saim is being facetious... because, you can never study too much! it's bs that you can just start confusing yourself. i'm not saying kill yourself for your history 101 exam... but, my point is.... if you know the ****, you can always go over it again if you have the opportunity

    as with the mcat i've studied so much that i am genuinely sick to my stomach from looking at the ****... so- i suspect that's as good as i'll get ;)

    leon
     

Share This Page