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  • 1. The following document is based on Georgetown University’s First year guide. This First-Aid was prepared by Arielle Perez and others from the Class of 2011. This material was also reviewed by members of the Class of 2012 to identify any changes from one year to the next. Some of the professors may not lecture and some of the textbooks may not be used in your classes this year. While not all of the advice will help you personally, we hope it will be a useful reference for your first year. Good luck! The information presented in this document do not reflect the personal views of the Office of Academic Enhancement or the UTHSCSA School of Medicine FIRST-AID FOR THE FIRST YEAR Welcome to your first year of medical school! It’s going to be an exciting and tiring whirlwind of a ride. Just remember that you’re not alone – you have over 230 classmates going through the same thing, professors and TA’s always willing to help, upperclassmen you can always ask for advice, etc. This packet has been put together by the UTHSCSA Office of Academic Enhancement to provide you with information and advice compiled from previous MS1’s on how to tackle the coming year. OVERALL TIPS 1) For almost all classes during first year, many different professors will give lectures. Each lecture will have questions on the exam so make sure you study all the lectures even if some seem less relevant than others. 2) Try to pre-read before you go to lecture, that way you won’t be lost and having to flip through the syllabus while the professor is speaking. Also, it will familiarize you with new vocabulary. 3) Textbooks – the syllabus will tell you which textbook is required. But do not buy the textbook unless you are 100% sure you need it. Textbooks can be expensive and many students find that they use it only as a second reference after the syllabus and/or online resources. Briscoe library always has the textbooks on reserve, so if you ever need to take a look at a few pages, you can save yourself $100 and just read it in the library. Further advice on textbooks will be given in regards to each subject. 4) Many of your classes will come with supplementary cd’s; there’s a reason why the professors have included them with your syllabi. The cd’s are indispensable study tools that will help you focus on what to study and give you an idea of what the professor thinks is important. In other words, USE THE CD! 5) The Study CD sold by the MS2 class contains a lot of useful documents such as old exams, answered objectives, and easy to remember charts. This is an invaluable resource for studying. 6) Try not to compare study habits with others. You’ve gotten this far so you know what works for you. However, don’t be afraid to leave old study habits behind and try something new if you’ve found that the old way is not effective or efficient enough. Reviewing in groups works for some people and it doesn’t work for others. Groups of more than four people tend to get out of control. Something that worked for some groups was doing old exams the day before the test in a small group to review the answers and talk about tough questions. 7) USE OLD EXAMS. Even if the questions aren’t exactly the same, it will help you focus on what to study and how questions will be phrased. Some people chose to do questions a few at a time while studying during the week, others use it after studying all the material as a way of reviewing all the material one/two days before the exam to pin point any loose ends and/or shaky subject matter that requires extra study. 8) Keep things in perspective. Don’t lose sight of things that are important to you. The reality is that first year grades are probably 5th or 6th as far as what residency programs look at; so don’t freak out this year. Pass all your classes, develop good study habits, make friends, and have fun. 9) Time management is key. You need to be efficient as far as what resources to use for each class. We’ve tried to highlight what MS1s thought was high-yield as far as the syllabus/notes/books/etc for each class. Don’t waste time in situations that are unproductive for you. It is possible to study, do well, and have a significant life outside of school. 10) Don’t burn yourself out. There’s a lot of material – it’s med school. But make sure to not neglect your own health. Find an outlet where you can relax, just don’t relax too much! -1– FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 2. HAVE FUN! It sounds patronizing, but seriously, medical school is awesome. Go into each situation with a positive attitude and you’ll do great. -2– FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 3. AN OVERALL LAYOUT FOR YOUR FIRST YEAR Similar to what many medical schools are switching over to, UTHSCSA’s curriculum is on a module-based system (sometimes referred to as organ-based). You will be taking multiple classes in various subjects (ie. anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, etc) but the course material taught in each subject is meant to overlap, such that while you’re learning about the circulatory system in physiology, you’re dissecting the heart in anatomy, and learning about how various cells and organs of the cardiovascular system look in histology. The goal of this method is to hopefully facilitate your learning about an organ system from all aspects of medical education at the same time and quickly be able to tie-in subject matter from each class. The first two modules are general concepts. They will be packed with A LOT of information that may seem overwhelming and all over the place (it kind of is). However, this is all information that you will need as a foundation for the subsequent modules during the year. Just keep up with the material and you’ll do fine! Module 1 – General concepts 1 Module 2 – General Concepts II Mod 1 Mod 2 Mod 3 Mod 4 Mod 5 Mod 6 Mod 7 Module 3 – Cardiovascular & Respiratory Module 4 – Gastrointestinal & Renal Biochemistry Module 5 – Endocrine & Reproductive Gross Anatomy Module 6 – Muskuloskeletal Micro-anatomy Module 7 - Neuroscience Immunology Physiology Microbiology Neuroscience OBD – Ethics OBD – CAP OBD - HB Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May General Concepts I 6wks General Concepts II 4wks Cardiovascular & 4wks Respiratory Gastrointestinal & ~3wks Renal Winter Break 3wks Endocrine & 4wks Reproductive Muskuloskeletal ~3wks Spring Break Neuroscience 6wks Course Course Director Contact hours Credit hours Biochemistry Richard Luduena, Ph.D. 83 5.0 On Becoming a Doctor Nanette Clare, M.D. 118 7.5 Microscopic Anatomy Tom King, Ph.D 82 4.5 Gross Anatomy & Embryology Linda Johnson, Ph.D. 186 7.5 Microbiology Keith Krolick, Ph.D 133 7.5 Neuroscience Mary Vaughn, Ph.D. 91 5 Physiology Duane Proppe, Ph.D. 122 7.5 TOTAL 815 46 -3– FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 4. BIOCHEMISTRY GENERAL DESCRIPTION This course runs from the beginning of the year all the way until you begin neuroscience. You’ll be getting three big sets of syllabi, but don’t be intimidated, just read through it and you’ll be able to distill its essence. The course is unequally weighted with about half your grade decided with the first two exams, so make sure you are careful. BOOKS • Lippencott’s Biochemistry is the “required” textbook for this course. A few students found Lippencott’s to be useful, but most people relied on the syllabus as their main source of study material. • BRS Biochemistry and Rapid Review: Some people used either one of these review books as a reference along with the syllabus. Some people wished they had utilized them throughout the year after taking the shelf exam because of the fact that they were “quick and concise” • First Aid for the USMLE was used by the majority of people for studying for the shelf exam. PROFESSORS • Dr. Luduena is the course director. He likes to tie a lot of history into his lectures which can make for a very fun lecture hour • Dr. Lee focuses on genetics and you’ll be seeing him a lot during your first two modules. Most people tended to like him as a lecturer. He loves to test on diseases • Dr. Adamo does a lot with metabolism. He knows his stuff, so he can sometimes lecture really quickly, but if you pre-read for class, he tends to tie things in really well and make things clear. OTHER RESOURCES • Graduate student TA’s are available every week to discuss any questions with the material you might have. STUDENT ADVICE There were a lot of common themes with student advice; we’ve tried to distill them down to their essence (accompanied with some direct quotations for emphasis). Keep in mind, this is advice, and not “hard and set rules” to live by: • Do well on the first two module exams: “The first two exams are heavily weighted, so do well on those. If you don’t you’ll be scrounging for every last point on the other exams.” “Do well on the first exam.” “Focus on the first and second exam. They are the majority of your grade.” “The course is FRONT LOADED, so study hard for the first TWO exams since they add up to about half your final grade.” “The course is weighted so that the first two tests are about 40% of the final grade, so study accordingly. The first two modules are also mostly science review- a good mix of molecular and biochem- so study more or less according to your science background.” “The first two tests are close to half of your grade, but the remaining exams seemed easier because they were not the major "focus." Basically, the better you do on the first two exams the easier it is, however, all is not lost if you don't.” • Pay attention to clinical correlates: “Really know those items that have clinical importance.” “Love the disease, because they are all over the exams.” “Always know the disorders.” • Do the objectives: “Answer the biochem objective questions thoroughly and you should be prepared for the exams.” “The objectives are usually a good indicator of what to focus on.” “Writing out answers to the objectives is a good way to first go over the material in each lecture.” “Pay attention to the objectives at the beginnings of the lectures. If you can answer those questions you should be fine for the exam.” “Know the objectives, know the objectives....” • The Syllabus as a primary resource: “Try to make sense of the syllabus, once you can organize it under your own terms it's easier to memorize.” “Just memorize the syllabus.” • Other: “This class is very detail oriented. Pay attention to what they tell you to memorize and what they tell you not to.” “know the syllabus, go to review sessions, go to tutoring offered by OAE.” “It's all about repetition. Write out pathways and organize the material so that it makes sense to you. This makes it much easier to absorb the information.” “make review sheets for each module to study for the tests and then for the final, you have those to go back to for a review so you aren’t lost in all of the info” -4– FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 5. ON BECOMING A DOCTOR GENERAL DESCRIPTION OBD is a year-long pass/fail course that is divided into three parts: ethics, human behavior, and clinical assessment of the patient. Make sure to look at the syllabus, each section has a different cut-off grade for passing; and you must pass each part of OBD to move onto your second year. • Ethics: this class is only during the first module of the first year. You will be given a syllabus with various topics to read. After Friday ethics lecture, you will meet in your OBD group and two preceptors to discuss the weeks topic. • Human Behavior (HB): think of this class as an introduction to psychiatry. • Clinical Assessment of the Patient (CAP): In this part of the course, you’ll be learning the proper technique of how to examine a patient. Everything you practice will be on a standardized patient (SP) or a fellow classmate. The provided syllabus will provide a bullet-point outline of each examination, and further information can be found in Bates or learned from your preceptor during CAP labs. Anytime you are working with a SP you will be in “White Coat Attire.” BOOKS • Guide to Physical Examination and History Taking (Bates) is the required textbook for CAP. This is an expensive textbook that received mixed reviews from students as to whether it’s really necessary for first year. Remember: if you ever need to read something out of the book, you can always find a copy in the library or borrow it from a friend. There is a lot of useful information with a lot of good pictures, however, the CAP syllabus and review during lab tended to be sufficient for most students. • Ethics and Human Behavior provide you with the needed syllabi. PROFESSORS A lot of students thought Dr. Schillerstrom’s lectures for Human Behavior were fun and entertaining. A lot of times he would hint at test questions. “His lectures equate to therapy for me.” OTHER RESOURCES • Bates online videos (these can be accessed through the library) STUDENT ADVICE There were a lot of common themes with student advice; we’ve tried to distill them down to their essence (accompanied with some direct quotations for emphasis). Keep in mind, this is advice, and not “hard and set rules” to live by: • Don’t blow off OBD, you still need to pass!!! “This class isn't hard, but don't completely blow it off. Just go through the material, like the syllabus notes and lecture slides, once or twice.” “Don't blow off the first exam. Pass/fail is not as easy as you think. Go over the Ethics reading again because it is testable.” “ • Focus on the HB study guide for the exams “You will get concise study guides from each professor.” “be sure to read over the reviews the professors pass out.” • Practice for your OSCE and CAP lab “The midterm OSCE is 20% and the final OSCE is 40% of your grade. Just practice on a very nice friend, and it will be fine” “Practice before you go. Watch the videos. Show up with something to contribute.” “at least skim through bates before the CAP tests. Utilize your preceptor for questions on technique.” • On CAP exams… “Read Bates and review lecture slides the night before the exam” -5– FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 6. IMMUNOLOGY GENERAL DESCRIPTION Immunology is technically a course under Microbiology. However, you will be learning about immunology during the first two modules and then start back up with microbiology after winter break. This course is meant to be an overview on the basics of our immune system, for a lot of students this is brand new material and can be tricky, so keep up with the material. BOOKS • The Immune System (Parham) is the required textbook for the course. A few students found this to be helpful, but the majority of students relied on the syllabus as their main source of information. • How the Immune System Works is a recommended textbook. A few students found this to be a quick overview of the immune system basics, but the majority of students relied on the syllabus as their main source of information. • Medical Microbiology & Immunology is the required textbook for the microbiology portion of the course later in the year. It provides a little bit of information about the immune system and offers a quick and concise review • First Aid for the USMLE was used by a majority of people for studying for the shelf. PROFESSORS • Dr. Krolick is the course director. He will be giving a lot of lecture during these first two modules. A lot of students enjoyed his lectures and found his slides to be very helpful and clear. He has weekly early morning question and answer sessions. OTHER RESOURCES • University of South Carolina: http://pathmicro.med.sc.edu/book/welcome.htm STUDENT ADVICE There were a lot of common themes with student advice; we’ve tried to distill them down to their essence (accompanied with some direct quotations for emphasis). Keep in mind, this is advice, and not “hard and set rules” to live by: • Turn immunology into a story: “Try to make it a story or fight. You body verses the foreign antigen.” “Try to understand it like a movie, a story” • Make charts for easy understanding: “for immunology, make a developmental flow-chart for the whole immune system. draw it all out on a big board or something.” “Charts, and diagrams are the best. It gets vague so divide up the material. Ie: know all 4 stages and the big differences between cell mediated and humoral immunity.” “Make a list of all the confusing terms and abbreviations to keep them all straight.” • Learn the material for later, it’s going to comeback later on in the year: “Try to really learn it because it keeps on showing up later.” “You’re going to see immuno stuff in gross, histo, microbio, so make sure to have a good grasp of the subject matter.” • Learn how to take the test: “learn how to interpret Krolick's questions.” “Don't get tripped up in the useless details for Krolick's tests. He tests overall understanding of immune system. His lectures were helpful.” • Other: “Know all bolded words from the syllabus” -6– FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 7. GROSS ANATOMY GENERAL DESCRIPTION This course runs from the beginning of the year all the way until you begin neuroscience. Gross Anatomy is combined with embryology (development of the human body during the first 9 weeks of gestation). There are A LOT of contact hours for this class, but there’s also A LOT of information and new terms for you to learn. The key to learning the material is repetition and visualization, so it’s a good idea to go to class, lab, review sessions, and tutoring. On Mondays, prior to dissection you will have a 10 question Galen quiz based on questions from the Galen cd. Prior to dissections, certain groups will be evaluated in lab on their actual dissection. BOOKS • Clinically Oriented Anatomy (Moore) is the required textbook for the course. The majority of students did not buy it and instead relied on the syllabus. Most students, who bought the book, found it too verbose and only used it as a supplementary aid. • Essential Clinical Anatomy (Moore) aka “mini-Moore” is a cliff-notes version of the required textbook and provides clear and concise charts for most of what is studied in this course. Students who used this book, found it more helpful than the “Big-Moore.” • The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology (Moore): some students found this to be a very helpful guide for understanding embryology. • Anatomy Atlases: you will need one of these for anatomy. Most students used Netter’s since it is free with membership fees to AMA. However, the dissector/lab manual provides reference pages to all three atlases. You may want to peruse the bookstore/library to figure out which atlas works best for you: • Netter’s’: stylized drawings of human anatomy. This is the atlas mainly used by our gross anatomy department (there is a cd version of the Netter’s Atlas, if you can get your hands on one, this is a very useful tool) • Grant’s: drawings of human anatomy, that are much more life like. Certain sections (ie. ear) provide more views in this atlas. Very few students tended to use this atlas. • Rohen’s: actual cadaver photos, students who used this atlas really liked the ability to see what structures look like in the cadaver. PROFESSORS Students tended to love all the anatomy professors: Dr. Johnson, the course director; Dr. Rahimi, Dr. Sakagushi, Dr. Richards, Dr. Moore, and Dr. Vogel. They will also be in lab with you. Make sure to use them as a resource – they are ALWAYS willing to help you. LAB Dissection days are Monday and Thursday. Labs are on the first floor under the dental school. There’s 4 lab rooms where you and your classmates will be dissecting and one prosection room where MS4 TAs will do their dissection for your videos. The prosection cadaver is a great reference as to how a dissection should look and for finding those hard-to-find structures. “Tanks” are done in alphabetical order, and you’ll be placed in a “tank” with three of your classmates. Your lab room will have two professors and various TA’s in it at all times. You’ll be working on the same cadaver all year long, unless you happen to be “sharing” with the dental students (in that case, you’ll get a new cadaver midway through the 3rd module). You can check out an atlas from the lab for the entire course, this is highly recommended, since you won’t want to be taking your Atlas stained and smelling of formaldehyde home with you to study. Your tank will need to provide it’s own gloves and dissector kits. Almost everyone chooses to wear scrubs and closed toed shoes, since the smell of formaldehyde lingers on clothing and various items can splash back onto your clothing. -7– FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 8. Lab exams at the end of a each module will consist of x-rays, cross-sections, bones, and cadavers. Most students tended to procrastinate and leave the x-rays, cross-sections, and bones for last minute studying. But others found it more helpful to look at x-rays after each dissection (they’ll be hanging on the hall- way light-boxes outside the dissections rooms) but they’re also on the x-ray cd provided to you. Cross- sections can be found on campus computers in the labs and library. The cross-sectional program is also available for installation on your own computer, Going to lab prepared is important. You get much more out of it when you are familiar with the material and can ask intelligent questions to the professors and your lab partners. If you’re not prepared, the time in lab isn’t really wasted… it’s just a lot less productive. And as a first year medical student you just can’t really afford unproductive study time. OTHER RESOURCES • Dissection videos for each lab are available through the Gross Anatomy Blackboard site. A lot of people found these to be a helpful review for before dissection, prior to evaluations, and for exam review. Prior to each dissection, the current Gross Anatomy TA’s will have a quick video to review what you will be doing during the days dissection. • Most of the TA’s will offer weekend tutoring. This is highly recommended and is done by the majority of students. Tanks will often tutor weekly together so that they can split the cost of the session. • Briscoe Library and the OAE websites have a list of good websites for visualizing embryo and gross anatomy. Take a look at these sites and see if there’s anything that might help you with your studies. http://www.library.uthscsa.edu/internet/students.cfm • Other Embryo websites students found very useful: • Indiana University: http://www.indiana.edu/~anat550/embryo_main/ • University of North Carolina: http://www.med.unc.edu/embryo_images/ • Other Gross Anatomy websites students found very useful: • Get Body Smart: http://www.getbodysmart.com/ • University of Wisconsin (dissection videos): http://www.anatomy.wisc.edu/courses/gross • Visible Body: http://www.visiblebody.com/ • Winking Skull: http://winkingskull.com/navigation.aspx STUDENT ADVICE There were a lot of common themes with student advice; we’ve tried to distill them down to their essence (accompanied with some direct quotations for emphasis). Keep in mind, this is advice, and not “hard and set rules” to live by: • “Get Tutoring”: “Tutor with anatomy TA's for an hour each weekend; it makes your studying much more effective and efficient,” “Get weekly tutoring over the labs with your Tank. Save money for it. Costs usually $5 a person/hour. Tell your tutor how you like to study so they help you master the material,” “A lot of students get private tutoring from the TAs. Pick your TA carefully. Some have a more laid-back style and some will ask you rapid-fire questions for an hour...pick a TA with a style that works for you.” “tutoring in lab is essential.” “get tutoring every week from TAs!!! this is invaluable since you won't see everything by yourself in lab- and you need to know what structures look like on different bodies.” “Find out who the best lab tutors are and get weekly sessions with them. Don't be afraid to switch tutors if yours isn't helpful.” “ANATOMY TUTORING!” “Get tutoring every week (it's only $5/hr and well worth it).” • Lab/dissection: “study before dissections and quiz tank members during dissection.” “Don't forget to study the study questions at the end of the labs. The dissection videos are very useful for gross lab preparation and review.” “Understanding the relationship between structures helped me memorize the concepts.” “Don't forget the bone box.” • Study Galen: “review seriously for Galen each week (don't memorize the answers) and you'll be much better prepared for the exams.” “Take Galen seriously and learn the material each week, don't just memorize the Galen questions.” “Galen and old exams are great practice.” “Do Galen questions again before exam.” “GALEN GALEN GALEN for the exam.” “after you finish studying, run through galen really quickly, it will improve your test score on the written part immensely.” “study Galen questions (not just for the quizzes, but also before tests because many of these questions are recycled).” • Do questions at the end of the lab manual: “There’s a lot of material that isn’t in the syllabus, but can be found as answers to the questions at the end of each lab dissection. Make sure to go over those questions, because a lot of test -8– FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 9. material is pulled from there.” “Pay attention to the questions at the end of each lab. If you can answer those questions you should at least get a 70 on the exam.” “Do the work. Study questions from lab manual” “Study the syllabus and the questions at the end of each dissection guide. “ -9– FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 10. MICROSCOPIC ANATOMY (aka Histology) GENERAL DESCRIPTION Histo is a course that runs concurrently with Gross Anatomy. It is designed to provide you with the foundation needed to understand the normal structure and function of cells, tissues, and organs in the human body. This class will lay the groundwork for pathology in your second year. BOOKS • Wheater’s Functional Anatomy is the required textbook for the course. Some students found this to be a very useful textbook for visual images, however most students relied on the syllabus. • Histology Atlases: some students checked out various histology atlases as a visual aid for the course and found it very useful. PROFESSORS • Dr. King is the course director and will be giving many of your lectures for this course. Many students enjoyed his animated manner of teaching and found his metaphorical stories very useful in remembering subject matter. During lecture, he will drill in subject matter that he finds important. • Dr. Morgan is the other main histo professor. Many students enjoyed his straight-forward manner of lecturing, others did not. He has a much drier style, but covers all the material you will need to know. LAB Histo lab is held in the MD labs. You will be in a group of about 20 students with either a professor or TA. There will be a powerpoint presentation of relevant images and slides for the subject matter and important structures that you will need to know. This is a great time to work on your Virtual Microscopy Portfolio and get help. Dr. King and/or Dr. Morgan will always be in the 2nd floor MD labs and are always there to help you or clarify any subject matter with which you may be uncomfortable. OTHER RESOURCES • If you’re ever stuck on a structure, you can always google it. • Microscopic Anatomy cd. This is an invaluable resource for the lab portion of the test. The quizzes at the end of each section are very useful in pointing out important structures. • Other helpful websites: • Boston Univeristy: http://www.bu.edu/histology/m/index.htm • Kansas University: http://www.kumc.edu/instruction/medicine/anatomy/histoweb/index.htm • Georgetown University: http://www8.georgetown.edu/dml/educ/microanatomy/index.htm • UTMB: http://cellbio.utmb.edu/microanatomy/ • Tutoring: the TA’s from lab are available for tutoring and can be very helpful in pointing out subject matter you may overlook. Some students found it helpful to have a TA to review all the slides before exams, to solidify the visual images. STUDENT ADVICE There were a lot of common themes with student advice; we’ve tried to distill them down to their essence (accompanied with some direct quotations for emphasis). Keep in mind, this is advice, and not “hard and set rules” to live by: • Know the details “There are often test questions on little details- i.e. things in parentheses.” “study the small print and diagrams. He loves anything that doesn't look important.” “he usually test things in fine print, in paraenthesis, or illustration captions. Know them.” “this is the one class where the little details are really important... questions will come from little words and pictures in the syllabus” “Do NOT ignore the little stuff!! EVERY DETAIL is important to Dr. King.” “MEMORIZE EVERYTHING THAT DR. KING PUTS IN PARENTHESIS. for some reason he loves to test over that information.” “It's all in the details. Read the syllabus, paying close attention to things that are defined for you or in (). Also, don't ignore pictures in your syllabus. They may not seem important, but chances are they will be on the exam.” “Know the details for King's questions, including info in parenthesis. Know every little diagram/picture.” “If it seems extremely minute and unimportant, it will be on the exam. Study all fine print and paraentheses carefully!” “know whats in the parenthesis” “Memorize all the random, annoying facts in your syllabus.” “Know every detail of the syllabus. Especially vague one-liners - 10 – FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 11. in the syllabus that Dr. King tests on” • Go to Lab Sessions “Go to the lab sessions and work on the VM portfolio as you go. It will make life easier when it is due and you actually learn a lot while doing it.” “Stay in lab with your computer and virtual portfolio. The professors and TAs will help you find what you need and then there's no reason for you to have to catch up or do it all in January.” “GO TO LAB!!!!!!!” “try to stay in lab and work on your portfolio. if you do it progressively throughout the semester, you don't have to rush through it in January. Plus searching for objects for your portfolio is like studying for lab.” “Search out King/Morgans room after the lab sessions to work on your portfolio, they’ll still be there and are VERY helpful.” • Do the study cd “the Histo study CD is a must for the lab portion of the exam.” “Use the CD a lot.” “Utilize the Histology CD. It is very helpful when it comes to preparing for the exam.” “know every detail and every picture of the study CD” “Use the Medical Micro CD as much as possible before the exam.” • Take old exams “Go over old exams.” “Be sure to work old tests because there are many repeats of old questions.” “Do practice questions from your MS1 Study CD.” “Study old tests on the study CD!!!” “He will sometimes retest from old material - study the old exams.” • Info about the exam “It’s always going to be a 40 qstn test: 20 lecture, 20 lab. In order to get the lab stuff right, you really need to understand lecture. King asks a lot of second order stuff and expects you to know every detail.” “Expect detailed second order questions.” “Dr. King writes really specific questions. READ the choices carefully.” - 11 – FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 12. PHYSIOLOGY GENERAL DESCRIPTION This is a big course for the year (7.5 units) and starts during the 2nd module. The course is split into 4 modules where you’ll learn about: a) cell-nerve physiology, b) Respiratory & Cardiovascular physiology, c) Gastrointestinal & Renal physiology, and d) Endocrine & Reproductive physiology. If you have never taken physiology before, you’ll be learning a lot of new subject matter. The weekly quizzes will help you stay on top of the material. BOOKS • Physiology (Costanzo) is the required textbook for this course. Almost all students had to use this book, since the course syllabus only provides objectives and insight on a few key points. However, there are certain areas of study, in which students found this book to be lacking in detail needed for our course. • BRS Physiology (Costanzo) is a cliff-notes version of the required textbook and was used by many students to study for the shelf exam. • First Aid for the USMLE: many students used this to study for the shelf exam • “If you went to UT, Dr. Silverthorn's text book for vert phys is really helpful for the first module of phys.” • Monographs: Are not really talked about, but can be found in the library or purchased online, but are small, comprehensive books that are specific to each subject matter (ie. GI, Renal, Respiratory, Cariovascular). Specific monographs that you may find helpful include: Vander’s Renal Physiology, Respiratory Physiology by West, and Cardiovascular Physiology by Berne & Levy. PROFESSORS • Dr. Proppe is the course director for this course and was well liked. His lectures on the cardiovascular system tended to be well-organized and were thoroughly explained. • Dr. Herlihy’s lectures on the respiratory system and “Herlihy’s lung” were well liked. He uses the blackboard to draw a lot of concepts so it can be helpful to attend his lectures. • Other professors that students enjoyed: Dr. Stockand (Renal), Dr. Nelson (Endocrine), Dr. Weiss (Cell) WEEKLY QUIZZES Every Friday there physiology quizzes are held in the auditorium. There is a 10-question individual quiz and a 20-question group quiz. You will be split into groups of 5-6 people. Each 20-question group quiz consists of the same 10 questions from the individual quiz and 10 new questions. MS2 TA’s will be available to help you with the group quiz; make sure to use them as a resource – there is no reason why you should ever get less than 100% on the group portion. OTHER RESOURCES STUDENT ADVICE There were a lot of common themes with student advice; we’ve tried to distill them down to their essence (accompanied with some direct quotations for emphasis). Keep in mind, this is advice, and not “hard and set rules” to live by: • Take the weekly quizzes seriously “You will hate studying for the weekly quizzes, but don't blow them off because they will end up bringing up your grade a lot in the end.” “Keep up with the material because your quiz grade helps your grade in general.” “Take the weekly quizzes seriously. If you can really be ready for those, you won't need to do nearly as much during the test times which will give you more time for other tests.” “be prepared for the weekly quizzes (they are a grade saver),” “Study for the weekly quizzes. It'll keep you up with the material and actually does help with your average at the end.” • Do the study objectives & read the book “Go to class, read the textbook.” “Read your book early. It is fairly easy to understand and covers almost everything. What it doesn't cover can be found either in the powerpoints or in the small syllabus.” “The syllabus is awful. It's pretty much just you and the textbook.” “Read the for the upcoming week on Saturday/Sunday” “The Coztanza book is not the best, but it's more reliable than lecture for this course.” “Keep up with the - 12 – FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 13. reading. There is much more critical thinking involved but keep memorizing just like before and you'll do fine.” “If they use the book/study guide format again, you really have to read the book well and study the slides (especially Dr. Proppe's).” • Get help from TA’s if you need it “Get tutoring from the TAs early.” “TA's are there...USE THEM!” “Get a tutor if you are struggling or just go talk to the professors.” • Know the teaching & testing style of each professor “keep your ears open about each prof: certain profs you really do have to go to their lectures because they don't correlate well with the text and they test on lecture material.” “Phys is tough because you don't have one condensed syllabus. For Prope, know the slides. For Stockland know the study guide. For Herlihey, know the study guide” • Organize a group study “Group study; it's not apparent how well you understand the material until you are questioned.” “Meet with your phys group the day before the exam to go over all the quizzes and old test questions- this is really helpful.” “Finding a study group was key for me. Talking about the subject matter helps more in this course than in others” • Do old exams and quizzes “look over old quizzes and exams” “Do lots of old quizzes, tests, and practice questions.” “Go over old quizzes. sometimes in that course, even if you understand everything, it's important to be able know what the “professor is thinking when writing the question because it can understood in different ways and your way might not be the same as the professors'” “take the practice tests as often as possible.” “review your quizzes before the exam.” “Make sure to work through some old quiz questions before weekly quizzes, and use old test questions when studying for the exam.” “Study old quizzes and tests.” - 13 – FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 14. MICROBIOLOGY GENERAL DESCRIPTION This course begins right after you return from winter break and is the follow-up to immunology. In this course you will be learning bacteriology, virology, parasitology, and mycology. There is a heavy emphasis on self and group learning with the working conferences, and much fewer lecture hours for the second part of the course. BOOKS • Medical Microbiology and Immunology (Lange) is the required textbook for this course. Most students found this book to be a useful reference and guide for answering questions to working conferences. • Clinical Microbiology Made Ridiculously Simple is a recommended textbook for this course. A lot of students found this to be a helpful book for charts, summaries, and mnemonics. “It gives you good "big picture" concepts as well as pictures and catchy phrases to memorize the details. Plus, who would get bored reading silly comics about bacteria with superhero capes?” • “UTHSCSA integrator” is a recommended supplement for this course and can only be purchased from the campus bookstore. A lot of students found it to be a very helpful chart of information that is well organized, other students found it too confusing. At first, it may look like a mess of information, but after working with it for a bit and understanding how it is organized, it can be a VERY useful study-aid • First Aid for the USMLE was used by many students to study for the shelf exam. PROFESSORS There are a lot of different professors for this course, based on their expertise. Professors that students mentioned they had enjoyed include: Dr. Rinaldi (fungus), Dr. Bose (virology), Dr. Brown, Dr. Krolick, and Dr. Jorgensen. LAB/WORKING CONFERENCES There is a lot of problem based learning in the section of the course. In your lab, you will have working conferences that are sometimes accompanied by lab sessions. Working conferences will consist of two parts: a group study in the MD labs, followed by a Working Conference in the lecture hall. Try to answer the questions of the cases before you come to group study, so that the session will go quicker, many times you won’t have enough time to answer all the questions in the time allotted. In the working conference, you will be going over the same cases, but the facilitating professor will provide more information and hopefully guide you onto the keywords of each subject matter. OTHER RESOURCES STUDENT ADVICE There were a lot of common themes with student advice; we’ve tried to distill them down to their essence (accompanied with some direct quotations for emphasis). Keep in mind, this is advice, and not “hard and set rules” to live by: • Organize the material into charts “There are many ways to study micro. I made summary sheets for each organism of their important characteristics.” “Charts are great for Virology, particularly the first page of the integrator.” “Give yourself time to organize the material.” “i found tree diagrams useful to help me figure out the pathogen.” • Make up mnemonics: “make some good mnemonics” “Mnemonics are very useful for spring semester.” “The Ridiculously Simple book has some good mnemonics in it, but it also helps to make up you own crazy stories” • Use the integrator “I used the integrator to visualize how the organisms are related” “use the integrator to learn the big pictures” “the night before using integrator to help you categorize things- this saved me.” • Study the working conferences, they focus on what professors find important “going to the working conferences helped get material in my head, plus you get a few extra points...” “The working conferences are usually pretty indicative of what will be on the exam so use them to your advantage.” “Know the material from the working conferences.” “Pay attention to the case conferences and the objectives.” “Prepare for Facilitated Discussion--not only does it force you to actively study, but when you talk about hard questions later, the easy stuff sticks like glue.” - 14 – FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 15. • Study old exams “Make charts and do working conferences...study those confrences and old exams for the exam!” “Old exam questions & working conferences will help you identify keywords that are indicative of a disease, use that knowledge to your advantage – it’ll be the same way on the shelf & the boards!” • On Working Conferences… “split up the working conferences for bacteriology with other people. They are really long and you can spend too much time on them” “The working conferences are worth only a fraction of a point, so don't feel guilty if you decide not to go. You can use that time to study.” “I went to most of the working conferences and clinical correlations to get the participation credit. That was free money, plus it keeps you up-to-date with the bugs and drugs.” • Other: “Anytime you see a mechanism (i.e. life cycle, virulence, etc.)know it!” “keep up with material. don't feel obligated to go to conferences if you study better at home. TAKE NOTES IN FIRST AID.” “Be able to recognize keywords for certain pathology (ie. strawberry cervix or fungus ball), this will help you narrow down a diagnosis” - 15 – FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 16. NEUROSCIENCE GENERAL DESCRIPTION This course is the last module of your first year of medical school and spans 6 weeks; every 2 weeks you will have an exam. In this class you will learn the anatomy and physiology of the human nervous system. There is a lot of material in this course and it will be covered very quickly, so do not fall behind. BOOKS • Fundamental Neuroscience (Haines) is the recommended, but not required, textbook for this course; only a few students used it. The syllabus for this course is fairly well written and most students found it sufficient as their primary resource. • Neuroanatomy: An Atlas (Haines) is like Netter’s for neuro. It contains real dissected photos andx-ray images. All pathways are drawn out, an can be very helpful for the second exam. Some students used it as a visual aid to accompany their studying, however, the neuro cd that accompanies the syllabus is more than enough. PROFESSORS The MD Class of 2011 neuroscience course was unusual in that it was taught by the Gross Anatomy department, rather than Dr. Vaughn, the normal course director. For that reason, the following information may be different for you: Dr. Rahimi was well liked by many students for his clear and concise lectures; other professors that students enjoyed included Dr. Johnson and Dr. Vogel. LAB/WORKING CONFERENCES The course has a lab section that meets once or twice for each exam OTHER RESOURCES • The Amy Lee Packet – Dr. Amy Lee is an alumnus of UTHSCSA and is currently a neurosurgery resident. At some point in the past she drew out charts and pathways that are very useful for this course. Somehow, someway, you’ll be able to get your hands on a copy of them. Ask your big-sib about it. “Use Amy Lee's study packet for the pathways in neuroscience...ten times better than the lab book.” STUDENT ADVICE There were a lot of common themes with student advice; we’ve tried to distill them down to their essence (accompanied with some direct quotations for emphasis). Keep in mind, this is advice, and not “hard and set rules” to live by: • Know the Neuro Study-CD “The study CD is high yield” “work the cd over and over” “The neuro study CD is money for the lab part of the exam, do everything on it.” “make sure you leave plently of time for the CD; THE CD IS THE KEY TO THE COURSE” “use the CD, both the atlas and the questions” “Use the CD, the syllabus, and try to keep up. The module is very fast paced.” “Use the CD when studying.” “USE THE CD” “Make sure you go through the study CD adequately.” • Go to lab “Go to lab, especially Rahimi's or Johnson, even if not required. They will help you draw the pathways and locate things” “Go to lab prepared and get help until you understand everything; you'll need a lot of repetitive studying over the same concepts to allow it to sink in.” “Always go to lab for clarification on pathways and stick to the study CD!!” “Go to Rahimi's labs.” “Go to Dr. Rahimi's lab sections, he is very good at simplifying the already complicated material.” • Draw out pathways “Drawing out pathways helps.” “If you can draw out pathways, you know where things start, end, where it synapses, etc. When you’re told where a lesion is located you can quickly identify ipsilateral vs contralateral.” • Do the old exams “old tests are even higher yield. Be sure to leave time to do lots of old tests.” “Do questions on the cd and old exams.” “Work with the Neuro exam early and often” “Use the old tests to practice.” “Take old tests they are golden!” “Many of the pictures and questions are recycled on the tests.” • Other: “IT IS NOT SUMMER YET. Try not to get too burned out after spring break. Neuro isn't bad if you keep up. Second phase is hard but definitely do-able. Know your pathways for all phases, and be best friends with your CD.” “start a little earlier than you think you need to--especially for the 2nd test. it is a killer.” - 16 – FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR
  • 17. MISCELLANEOUS INFORMATION ENRICHMENT ELECTIVES Enrichment Electives are supplemental courses throughout the year that have been developed to enhance your medical learning. Courses such as History of Anatomy, Interdisciplinary approaches in death and dying, and Introduction to emergency medicine are open for MS1 enrollment. You will not get a letter grade for the course, but it will show up on your transcript that you have participated. To find out more information, check on the OAE website under the First Year link. GREAT PLACES TO STUDY • On Campus: • Nursing school small group rooms • Briscoe library • 2.0 rooms • MD labs • Bookstores: • Barnes & Noble • Borders • Other Libraries: • UTSA library (open 24 hrs) • Public library off of Bandera across from OP Schnabel park • Cafes • Starbucks • 24 hr Starbucks (located at The Quarry) • It’s a Grind (free wifi) • Brazil Café (free wifi) - off of Medical Drive. • Java Connexion “on Babcock is great, they have a student discount and free wireless internet.” • Restaurants (they’ll let you sit and study post purchase) • Jason’s Deli • La Madeline • Mama Margies (free wifi) • Flying Saucer (free wifi) • Brindles (free wifi) • Cosi at La Cantera • At home IMPORTANT NUMBERS/EMAILS • Dr. Lee Jones, Dean of Student Affairs: 210-567-4429 (jonesl4@uthscsa.edu); the great things that everyone says about this man is true. He is an amazing asset to this school and is truly there for YOU, the student. Pay attention to his talk during orientation week and make sure you get his cell phone number. • Dr. David Henzi, Director of the Office of Academic Enhancement: 210-567-0638 (henzi@uthscsa.edu); another amazing asset to the medical school student body. If you’re having any sort of academic trouble or just need a little help with a class, make sure to contact him at the OAE. Either he or Jennifer will get you the extra help you may need to get on the right path! • Student Health Clinic: 210-567-9355 • University Counseling Services: 210-567-2648 • After hours mental health crisis consultation is available through the Psychiatry Resident on call at University Hospital @ 210-358-2524. Callers should identify themselves as an HSC student or spouse. - 17 – FIRST-AID FOR FIRST YEAR