Getting into medical school is itself a mountainous challenge. Once students are in medical school, there comes a question of how can they successfully stay afloat? Can they avoid the wrong methods of studying? How can students avoid burning themselves out? What are the best study practices they should follow? What about free time?
Regardless of whether students are getting admission into John Hopkins University Medical School, Harvard Medical School, Lebanese American University Medical School, Sackler Faculty of Medicine-Tel Aviv University, Free University of Berlin Medical School, or Windsor Medical School; here are some handy tips which they should always keep in mind:
The importance of sleep should never be forgotten
It may seem like a no-brainer fact but it is true. It is also worth mentioning that without proper sleep and rest, the body and brain won’t work properly, won’t reach their best state, and will cause a huge internal meltdown.
Lack of sleep can result in an untimely death.
It is hence a must for students to get as much sleep as possible. Otherwise, they will burn out quicker than ever, will have reduced focus and the consequences are two-fold. Not only will the body suffer but also the memory will be hurt and the size of the mind will shrink.
This then turns into neglected grades and a dual personality. Hence, students should prioritize their time and get a good truckload of sleep.
No medical student should cram stuff in their mind
A lot of students wait until the 11th hour and the last minute when it comes to preparing for tests. If students focus diligently on their time management skills, they will never ever have the need to cram stuff in their minds.
What is the big deal about cramming? First of all, it is a terrible thing to do. Second, the goal of each and every medical school is to become renowned, trusted and loved physician whose hands bring in the much-needed cure.
The classes students are taking in medical school focus on complicated topics, from anatomy to pharmacology and biological sciences with medicine and healthcare, and other concepts ranging on a wide array of subject matter, connecting all these aspects together in a way or another. Authentic learning means understanding the concepts and building upon each idea and theory they learn.
Cramming only gives a brief stint of memorization and that does not work in medicine. Systematic long-term learning works in medicine. Waiting until the night before the test/exam and then cramming things in the brain will result in one thing: Failure!
It is undoubtedly a bad habit and it will not get students where they should be. Graduation and residency become a distant reality if medical students do not refrain from cramming at the last moment. Systematic studying is helpful for Pre medical courses for students right from the beginning.
Students should always learn from the best in optimized learning environments
Of course, classrooms at most medical schools are large but this shouldn’t be an impediment to a medical student’s learning. Thankfully, the faculty at most medical schools in North and Central America is experienced and is well versed in medical education and their respective fields of medicine.
Caribbean medical schools realized the importance of learning in smaller groups. The student to faculty ratio in the region is low, not only because of accepting a small number of students in each term but also that learning in a small environment has its own proven rate of success.
The same model is now being implemented stateside and in Canada too.
In most Caribbean medical schools, lecture halls are not cramped with loads of students with one professor at a time. Instead, the professors and faculty address students by their name, and offer individualized learning plans for each student.
Students will also be attending medical school with individuals of different minds but of the same reasons and objectives as them. Competition in the industry is intense. Everyone is there to not just succeed but also help others along their way.
Always have time for some R&R (Rest and Recreation)
Students of medical schools are not machines and that they need to avoid burnouts. This is the reason why they should always take the time to sit back and relax. They should enjoy, play some games, read a good book, and watch TV and the like.