Those that don't use anki how many pages of notes do you have?

IMG69

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I've only used anki and q banks for my study throughout my whole degree but my mate showed me her ob/gyn notes and I almost fell off my chair. she had 120k words in like a 500 pages word document with some images too. That's just for obgyn, I just use the 16k anki cards.

Those of you that don't use anki, how many notes do you have? I couldn't believe she had 120k words, all hand typed as well - no copy and paste, she has like 6 pages for a topic whereas I might have 6 cards.

This isn't a how can I study better/more efficiently etc question, i'm genuinely curious if this is the typical amount of notes people have.

What's the most notes you've ever seen/heard of from a classmate?
 

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I have a pretty hefty stack of notebooks with handwritten preclinical notes, taken during lecture/while watching recordings. No idea how many words, and how thoroughly I took notes varied a lot by course. I doubt it would have ever come anywhere close to 500 pages for a single course though, that seems wayyyy excessive. A big part of what's helpful for me about note taking is distilling out key facts to remember, not rewriting every single fact or concept in the course. I also didn't take notes on like, textbooks or things like that, pretty much only live lectures/small groups. I also did a lot of studying with less permanent strategies though, like drawing on whiteboards, no idea how many words/pictures that would have counted for.

Typed notes never worked for me, the act of physically writing/drawing something by hand was an important part of the process for me. typing just doesn't stick the same.

[Edit]: One of my strategies while reviewing for every exam was actually to try to distill all of the key facts for that exam onto 1 sheet of paper, or one whiteboard. The act of writing it all by hand was helpful to me, but it's only good for those last facts you're trying to make stick in your brain - not really helpful imo if you don't understand the general underlying concepts
 
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IMG69

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I have a pretty hefty stack of notebooks with handwritten preclinical notes, taken during lecture/while watching recordings. No idea how many words, and how thoroughly I took notes varied a lot by course. I doubt it would have ever come anywhere close to 500 pages for a single course though, that seems wayyyy excessive. A big part of what's helpful for me about note taking is distilling out key facts to remember, not rewriting every single fact or concept in the course. I also didn't take notes on like, textbooks or things like that, pretty much only live lectures/small groups. I also did a lot of studying with less permanent strategies though, like drawing on whiteboards, no idea how many words/pictures that would have counted for.

Typed notes never worked for me, the act of physically writing/drawing something by hand was an important part of the process for me. typing just doesn't stick the same.

[Edit]: One of my strategies while reviewing for every exam was actually to try to distill all of the key facts for that exam onto 1 sheet of paper, or one whiteboard. The act of writing it all by hand was helpful to me, but it's only good for those last facts you're trying to make stick in your brain - not really helpful imo if you don't understand the general underlying concepts

That's what I just can't believe, thats only obgyn, we have all the other fields.......... so she's writing over 20k words a week for a whole year basically.
 
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I did this in undergrad can't imagine doing this in med school but people do it and it works for them.
 
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IMG69

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I did this in undergrad can't imagine doing this in med school but people do it and it works for them.
tbh she doesn't do well at all which is why I find it interesting she's stuck with this method, "as long as I pass it's working"
 
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enchantments

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I didn't use Anki as much as I should have in undergrad, but damn is it amazing for med school. I love going through a school lecture once (if at all) and never going back to it again. And keeping up with the Anking deck has been reassuring knowing that I'm not only actively keeping up with everything I've learned since our first lecture, but in an incredibly efficient way that algorithmically targets my weakest areas.
 
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Matthew9Thirtyfive

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I didn't use Anki as much as I should have in undergrad, but damn is it amazing for med school. I love going through a school lecture once (if at all) and never going back to it again. And keeping up with the Anking deck has been reassuring knowing that I'm not only actively keeping up with everything I've learned since our first lecture, but in an incredibly efficient way that algorithmically targets my weakest areas.

Amen. Not watching lectures in med school was the best decision.
 
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ekmf27050

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I did this in undergrad can't imagine doing this in med school but people do it and it works for them.
Same. Tried it for the first exam of med school. Wild amount of study time, wild amount of notes, failed the test.

I switched strategies and never looked back. 😂
 

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tbh she doesn't do well at all which is why I find it interesting she's stuck with this method, "as long as I pass it's working"
Most people with a crap ton of notes, imo, typically aren't doing well or just scraping by. Usually, they're just brute force learning rather than figuring out what works for them while also being efficient.

This, of course, isn't always the case, and I get some people rely heavily on notes but if you're spending 8hrs a day writing notes I highly suggest you try other methods if you haven't already. And if it's the only thing that seems work, and you can do those hours without burning out, then def go on and get through and be a doctor fam.
 
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sunshinefl

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Most people with a crap ton of notes, imo, typically aren't doing well or just scraping by. Usually, they're just brute force learning rather than figuring out what works for them while also being efficient.
orrrrr that is the only thing that works for us. When I tried other things they failed.
 
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orrrrr that is the only thing that works for us. When I tried other things they failed.

I’ve seen a number of people say that, but it’s usually because they either aren’t using the other things correctly or aren’t really giving them a shot (like doing anki for a week and then saying it doesn’t work).

Not saying that’s you, but it does happen a lot.
 
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sunshinefl

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I’ve seen a number of people say that, but it’s usually because they either aren’t using the other things correctly or aren’t really giving them a shot (like doing anki for a week and then saying it doesn’t work).

Not saying that’s you, but it does happen a lot.
It really doesn't work for me. Tried Anki, sketchy, etc and it was not it. Even tried to do an in between and type up notes rather than hand write for efficiency and the fact I could re-organize them as I went, failed that class. Trust me I did trial and error to mix up my strategy from what worked in undergrad and MY ENTIRE LIFE but it burned me.
 
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IMG69

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It really doesn't work for me. Tried Anki, sketchy, etc and it was not it. Even tried to do an in between and type up notes rather than hand write for efficiency and the fact I could re-organize them as I went, failed that class. Trust me I did trial and error to mix up my strategy from what worked in undergrad and MY ENTIRE LIFE but it burned me.
Out of curiosity when you say you tried anki how long did you try it for etc? I frequently mention my anki cards to her, subtlety kind of thing E.g wow you have so many pages, I only have XX cards".

Obviously glad you found what worked for you.
 

sunshinefl

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Out of curiosity when you say you tried anki how long did you try it for etc? I frequently mention my anki cards to her, subtlety kind of thing E.g wow you have so many pages, I only have XX cards".

Obviously glad you found what worked for you.
I make Anki cards in a board review deck that I personally made, and add topics and facts as it suits me as I do UWorld only. That supplements everything else. It has like 1500 cards but its by topic not the same sentence with 25 different words blacked out to make 25 cards.
 

IMG69

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I make Anki cards in a board review deck that I personally made, and add topics and facts as it suits me as I do UWorld only. That supplements everything else. It has like 1500 cards but its by topic not the same sentence with 25 different words blacked out to make 25 cards.

Seems like a great strategy, making your own to tailor to your own needs/learning.
 
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odyssey2

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My FA is a former husk of itself, tattered at the edges and browned with my finger oils from thumbing through its pages.
 

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I don't use anki and I have zero pages of handwritten notes.
 
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bdoc13

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Plot twist - he has thousands of digital notes on his Ipad.
Haha negative. I tried anki for a little while and couldn't keep up with it/didn't really like it. My strategy has been Pathoma+/- BnB along with class lectures and reading first aid along with it. Have done well in classes and just took an NBME yesterday so I should see soon how well its working.

-B
 
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sunshinefl

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Haha negative. I tried anki for a little while and couldn't keep up with it/didn't really like it. My strategy has been Pathoma+/- BnB along with class lectures and reading first aid along with it. Have done well in classes and just took an NBME yesterday so I should see soon how well its working.

-B
yes, but then how do you consolidate your thoughts? and review them?
 

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yes, but then how do you consolidate your thoughts? and review them?
I am not sure if I understand exactly what you mean, but I just go through lecture slides several times before exams. To me, writing things down takes too much time. Also using first aid for a rapid review of material is beneficial bc everything in there can be assumed to be high yield.
 
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TragicalDrFaust

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I kind of feel bad for anyone who has to do that much work to feel comfortable with the material. I’m not a stellar student but I use anki (make my own cards from lectures) and use a notebook to map stimulate/inhibit relationships or other relationships and draw out structures.

Before anki I would read though the ppt and “summarize” with a note or paragraph per slide or concept. I find that note taking a pretty passive learning strategy (research seems to back this statement) which is low yield so now I keep it to a minimum and mostly make mind map style notes if I write anything at all.
 

sunshinefl

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I am not sure if I understand exactly what you mean, but I just go through lecture slides several times before exams. To me, writing things down takes too much time. Also using first aid for a rapid review of material is beneficial bc everything in there can be assumed to be high yield.
I don't write things down word for word. Obviously that would be insane. But I write down concept ideas and epiphanies.
 

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yes, but then how do you consolidate your thoughts? and review them?
I just read through the notes 3x, and then do practice questions which helps consolidate and acts as a review.

That's also what I did during my SMP. I have recently taken up Anki to try that for long-term retention, with Anki I typically only read through the notes 1x since Anki is going to cover the material again and again.
 

sunshinefl

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I just read through the notes 3x, and then do practice questions which helps consolidate and acts as a review.
1. I read through the notes 1 time---> write my concept notes
2. Re-read through my concept notes---> write super consolidated notes
3. Refer to those as needed
4. Do practice questions
5. Make my own Anki review deck based on questions (not comprehensive for another person, just what I need)
 
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catnip12

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I don’t use Anki. Doing very well with typed out notes on my computer, or handwritten notes in onenote on my iPad. Now on rotations and again doing pretty well.
If Anki works for you great. It works for a lot of people. Some of us, like to make connections a different way. Using a computer software greatly reduces the number of pages you have to handwrite.

Edit to add: I use a software called Notion which is amazing at helping me keep my stuff organized. It’s free with student email accounts. I’d recommend checking it out if you want, otherwise many have found success with Anki and other study techniques.
 
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I don’t use Anki. Doing very well with typed out notes on my computer, or handwritten notes in onenote on my iPad. Now on rotations and again doing pretty well.
If Anki works for you great. It works for a lot of people. Some of us, like to make connections a different way. Using a computer software greatly reduces the number of pages you have to handwrite.

Edit to add: I use a software called Notion which is amazing at helping me keep my stuff organized. It’s free with student email accounts. I’d recommend checking it out if you want, otherwise many have found success with Anki and other study techniques.

Just got into notion and I love the toggle list for active recall. I may give up anki completely because 1) I don’t like it anyway and 2) notion lets me ask big picture consolidation questions and I can hide an answer or image, draw it out, and check myself, and I’ve set up a spaced repetition review calendar that does the math for me. I just check a box.
 
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catnip12

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Just got into notion and I love the toggle list for active recall. I may give up anki completely because 1) I don’t like it anyway and 2) notion lets me ask big picture consolidation questions and I can hide an answer or image, draw it out, and check myself, and I’ve set up a spaced repetition review calendar that does the math for me. I just check a box.

Haha don't get me started. Yes, I remember that is what sold me on it during preclinicals. And now on rotations, I find it simply unmatched when it comes to building my knowledge base. I have a little notebook for day to day learning then after reviewing UWorld, I just add to my notion. Can make pages within pages, can link pages to other pages, pages within sentences, back and forward links, toggles etc.

Honestly, just like many swear by Anki, I think Notion (or a combination of the two as some of my friends do) is like Jet fuel. The beginning is rough, then you get used to it.
 
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Haha don't get me started. Yes, I remember that is what sold me on it during preclinicals. And now on rotations, I find it simply unmatched when it comes to building my knowledge base. I have a little notebook for day to day learning then after reviewing UWorld, I just add to my notion. Can make pages within pages, can link pages to other pages, pages within sentences, back and forward links, toggles etc.

Honestly, just like many swear by Anki, I think Notion (or a combination of the two as some of my friends do) is like Jet fuel. The beginning is rough, then you get used to it.


Do you use Notion for general life organization?
Was looking for a one-stop organization app for my research, projects, clubs, etc etc and Notion popped up as such an app
 
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Do you use Notion for general life organization?
Was looking for a one-stop organization app for my research, projects, clubs, etc etc and Notion popped up as such an app

You definitely can, there are lots of YouTube videos on using it as a life organization tool.
 
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catnip12

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Do you use Notion for general life organization?
Was looking for a one-stop organization app for my research, projects, clubs, etc etc and Notion popped up as such an app
I personally do not but know 1-2 people that do. I'm too superstitious to let any one thing take over my life like that jk jk
 
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sunshinefl

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Just got into notion and I love the toggle list for active recall. I may give up anki completely because 1) I don’t like it anyway and 2) notion lets me ask big picture consolidation questions and I can hide an answer or image, draw it out, and check myself, and I’ve set up a spaced repetition review calendar that does the math for me. I just check a box.

Haha don't get me started. Yes, I remember that is what sold me on it during preclinicals. And now on rotations, I find it simply unmatched when it comes to building my knowledge base. I have a little notebook for day to day learning then after reviewing UWorld, I just add to my notion. Can make pages within pages, can link pages to other pages, pages within sentences, back and forward links, toggles etc.

Honestly, just like many swear by Anki, I think Notion (or a combination of the two as some of my friends do) is like Jet fuel. The beginning is rough, then you get used to it.

oh man that sounds amazing! where were you guys when I needed you?!!?!?! Oh well. I'm a 4th year with all exams done and 8 weeks of rotations between me and graduation.
 
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FutureSurgical

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Thought anki wasn't for me. Then I actually learned how to use it with classes. Will always use anki from here on out.

Though, I have to say, it isn't the "end-all be-all" of studying. I have to draw out pathways, do practice questions, etc. But anki ensures I have a ton of "passes" through each lecture.
 

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Exact number of notes as I have class lecture slides. Read through those 2x a week before the exam, do great. Never handwritten notes, haven't used anki since P/S for the MCAT
 
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Exact number of notes as I have class lecture slides. Read through those 2x a week before the exam, do great. Never handwritten notes, haven't used anki since P/S for the MCAT
You must have a really good memory. I would straight up fail using this method.
 
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ChymeofPassion

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You must have a really good memory. I would straight up fail using this method.
I suppose so yeah, has made first year fairly easy. Always ready to change my methods if it gets harder, but won't fix anything if it ain't broke!
 
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I've only used anki and q banks for my study throughout my whole degree but my mate showed me her ob/gyn notes and I almost fell off my chair. she had 120k words in like a 500 pages word document with some images too. That's just for obgyn, I just use the 16k anki cards.

Those of you that don't use anki, how many notes do you have? I couldn't believe she had 120k words, all hand typed as well - no copy and paste, she has like 6 pages for a topic whereas I might have 6 cards.

This isn't a how can I study better/more efficiently etc question, i'm genuinely curious if this is the typical amount of notes people have.

What's the most notes you've ever seen/heard of from a classmate?
I do typed notes from lecture PowerPoints structuring everything into a list-like format, then I create quick sheets of hand written notes for each topic basically re-writing and condensing my typed notes (by then I have already seen the material like 3x). This method hasn't failed met yet in anyway, but I have used Anki for certain aspects of board preparation, Sketchy, etc. I imagine I will be using Anki a little more so in dedicated. I enjoy learning topics more organically and seeing my own handwriting when it comes to new, raw content. So I suppose that's why I've continued it but refined it upon going through these first 2 years of med school. I also found Anki to be very boring even though it is a good system in many aspects.

I have a good stack of paper notes for each subject but I couldn't tell you how many words or anything.
 
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IMG69

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I do typed notes from lecture PowerPoints structuring everything into a list-like format, then I create quick sheets of hand written notes for each topic basically re-writing and condensing my typed notes (by then I have already seen the material like 3x). This method hasn't failed met yet in anyway, but I have used Anki for certain aspects of board preparation, Sketchy, etc. I imagine I will be using Anki a little more so in dedicated. I enjoy learning topics more organically and seeing my own handwriting when it comes to new, raw content. So I suppose that's why I've continued it but refined it upon going through these first 2 years of med school. I also found Anki to be very boring even though it is a good system in many aspects.

I have a good stack of paper notes for each subject but I couldn't tell you how many words or anything.
I agree with you, I find anki very boring as well, the main thing i've found is I need much less study time to be effective basically. In undergrad I used to basically do your method, write notes, condense notes, condense further etc.

I just find anki to be more effective for the time spent, my friend does 8 hour days, I currently do about 45~ minutes of anki a day. If you ask me the key aspect of studying, it's actually getting involved and actively studying whatever method your using. Basically you've gotta have those "where the **** did the time go" days, if you hit that feeling/stage then whatever your doing should be effective IMO.
 
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PapaGuava

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I agree with you, I find anki very boring as well, the main thing i've found is I need much less study time to be effective basically. In undergrad I used to basically do your method, write notes, condense notes, condense further etc.

I just find anki to be more effective for the time spent, my friend does 8 hour days, I currently do about 45~ minutes of anki a day. If you ask me the key aspect of studying, it's actually getting involved and actively studying whatever method your using. Basically you've gotta have those "where the **** did the time go" days, if you hit that feeling/stage then whatever your doing should be effective IMO.
Yeah I agree with you, it all comes down to active learning whether you condense things or use Anki. I also agree that Anki requires less time and is rapid-fire which is very nice, and I intend on using it more and more as the clinical years go on for boards and such. I think I didn't want to shake the tree after it had worked well all this time, and with most of the content under my belt, it's going to become all about practice questions at this point. However, being able to refer back to my notes if I need more explanation on something (in my own words) rather than going through multiple sources has come in handy.
 
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