Making it into medical school might seem like finally crossing the finish line of a race. While that’s true to a certain degree, it’s just the first step on your route to becoming a doctor. But do you feel like you always have your nose dug deep inside books? No time to spend with family, friends or even doing hobbies that you enjoy so much?
If yes, that shouldn’t have you feeling discouraged. You just need to start thinking about how to be just as successful in this next phase. This means it’s time to focus on how you can prepare yourself for clinical rotations, licensing exams, and matching for residency. You know you’ll need to hit the books a lot, but you might not know exactly how to study in medical school.
While you could spend months trying out different strategies, going in with expert-approved ideas is probably a better use of your time. Take a look at what some best practicing physicians have to say about study methods that worked for them.
1. Review material regularly
The need to study regularly is one piece of advice just about every doctor recommends. Unfortunately, our brain will remember only about 5% of something we have learned previously if we do not try to understand and revise it within two days of being exposed to it. Without revisiting the content, the average brain is unable to store this new information adequately. Even better, try consolidating concepts within 24 hours of learning them, but no longer than 48 hours for maximal retention.
2. Be thorough right from the start
Concepts are how things work. We can usually remember a concept for a long time if we learn it well the first time and truly understand it. One good way to strengthen your core concepts is to visualize it. What’s a better way of visualizing than watching an actual video?
The MediMagic App can help you visualize all key medical concepts.
· Select the topic you want to learn
· Watch the video in high quality 3D
· Master any concept
This tip is especially crucial for concepts. It takes time to learn effectively, but don't cut corners. If a concept is studied thoroughly the first time and revised, it's much faster than putting in half the effort over multiple studying periods. Concepts also make facts easier to understand. Many concepts can act as the context to help link loosely-related facts, enabling you to better remember these facts.
3. Keep the learning process as interesting as possible
Try and engage in learning as much as possible to reinforce and consolidate the material. This may include:
· Pre-reading and asking questions of the text
· Summarizing core ideas in as few words as possible
· Using mind maps to link key concepts
· Testing yourself on the material
· Answering questions to combine problem-solving with memory
· Memorizing through attractive notes and mnemonics
You may be wondering how MediMagic can help in the last context. Follow us on Instagram to get multiple dosages of notes and flashcards, every week. Don’t forget to save them for future references.
At times, it is easy to get carried away and devote all our time to studying, focusing on the goal of getting the best marks possible. Unfortunately, this leads to burnout and takes away the joy of learning. When we dedicate all our time to studying, we switch from viewing studying as another part of life to the only part of our life. Our sole focus becomes completing the exam, and we lose the joy of the present moment and everything that happens to us along the way. Taking days off and making time for hobbies allows us to stay grounded and enjoy each moment.
MediMagic is a great platform to learn medicine effectively. We practice what we preach – making learning medicine as interesting as possible. Do share this article with anyone who may find it helpful.