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What kind of learner are you?

Do you color-code all your notes? Do you record lectures to listen to as you fall asleep? Do you re-write everything the professor says, then never look at your notes again? 

Figuring out your learning style is probably one of the most important things to do if you're a student (be it high school, undergrad, or med school). Especially in fast-paced, high-stakes situations (cough MEDSCHOOL cough), you don't have much time to experiment with different styles, or take a lot of time to internalize and regurgitate information.

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The Whiteboard vs. the Notecard

Hey everyone, over the years I’ve found that premeds are always looking for a way to get ahead in studying or looking for a better way in general. Some are willing to go far to get the grades and others are willing to go even farther to get the grades they want.

What happens: a few students around me find out I’m doing well in a course or on an exam and they’re trying their hardest to figure out “what they’re doing wrong.” And when they ask me what to do, I do the best I can to tell them what they need to do to get the A. I’ve seen a lot of posts explaining you need to do this or that, but I’m gonna take a different approach. There are two types of studying styles that I’ve seen, the notecard and the whiteboard.

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Return of the Med Student

Day 118

I'm baaaaaaack!

First, I want to apologize for my incredibly long hiatus. Instead of writing for PMH, I spent my time finishing my undergraduate senior honors thesis, graduating college, moving home, moving to another state by myself (for the first time in my life), and starting medical school….I'd like to think those are legit reasons for not posting.

But let's focus on the positive, I'm back and ready for action! Mo and Brian are well on their way to med school, but I have the privilege of already dealing with the hellish doom of experiencing  med school. Because of that, I'm starting a new category here at PMH: "Med School Secrets". I'll be keeping it real, sharing raw, no BS views of medical school. I'll also tell you guys about tips, tricks, and personal mistakes that maybe you can learn from (believe me, I'm bound to make a TON of mistakes)


Things I won't be sharing:

My personal grades (…probably)

Specifics about my school (I'd rather not be tracked down and get kicked out of school)

…..ya, that's about it.


So, keep your eyes peeled for these posts, and if there's anything you want to see my write about, please feel free to email us, or tweet at PMH or me directly.


Disease of the week - Meningioma

Hi guys

This is actually from the rounds that I attended 2 weeks ago. After procrastination, here is my first entry. Hope you enjoy, and I would definitely love to hear back from many people!

1. Patient Profile

One evening, a pregnant female entered the emergency room complaining of a splitting headache that had been torturing her for a while. After looking at her, it became apparent what was causing her headache - a tumor; about the size of a chicken's egg in the middle of her forehead. The tumor had developed as her pregnancy progressed. Even though the part of her skull in contact with the tumor was crushed, MRI results showed that the tumour has not damaged the frontal cortex area.

The massive tumour is called meningioma - tumour on the meninges. A meningioma can be either malignant or benign; most tumors are known to be benign. Details about the nature of the tumor is not well known up to this date.

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Latest addition to Pre-med Hell

Dear readers of Pre-med Hell,
My name is Susan and I am the newest addition to Pre-med Hell blog community. I am a biology major from Canada (any Canadians out there? ;) ) My hobbies include reading, playing the violin and piano occasionally, watching a wide variety of TV shows, and of course, spending exorbitant amount of time on the Internet. As for my interests, I am interested in creating a reservoir of information or support system where everyone can have easy access to and benefit from. That is why I wanted to get involved with Pre-med Hell community when I stumbled across this blog. Through this opportunity, I want to pursue my love in reading and writing about pretty much anything and exchange as much information as possible about pre-medical admissions process as well as medical residency application process with people from all over North America. 

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In Stitches: A Review

In the past two weeks I’ve had the great pleasure of sharing the in the emotional journey of Dr. Anthony Youn as he progressed from a young child to a mature plastic surgeon. I’m talking about his new book In Stitches slated to come out on April 26th (pre-order it here). I can easily after reading most medical memoirs, biographies, and stories, this one has to rank very near the top. Dr. Youn does a phenomenal job taking the reader through a roller coaster of emotions as he progresses on his path to becoming a physician.

Here at PMH we have read most of the “must-read” medical books, there are the standards such as House of God, and the Gawande books, and then there are those that are less well known. In Stitches falls wholly in the second category, mainly due to the fact it hasn’t been released yet, but I feel that it has the potential be great.

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The New MCAT

It’s coming up to the end of the semester now, and people are cramming for finals; as much as we would love to give you tips on how you can succeed, we can’t. Why? You ask. Well it’s because of the recently announced AAMC MCAT changes. They have left us a little worse for wear, and fairly stressed. Upon hearing of this change we immediately began crying, except for Jon who is off to medical school in August. What are these changes you ask? Well deciphering a 1500 page document is something that is quite difficult, even for the most adept premed student, so we’ve taken the effort of decoding it for you.

What are the major changes you ask, well from our point of view it looks like they’ve completely torn it apart and redone it. First let’s cover the new sections.

  1. Underwater Basketweaving – Students must demonstrate their ability to weave 6, yes 6, perfect baskets, while underwater in a pool filled with sharks. They will be given 60 minutes. Those that fail will be eaten by the sharks.
  2. Walking on Fire – As organic chemistry isn’t already difficult enough, students will have to demonstrate their agility, mental, and physical fortitude by walking across a bed of hot coals. Student will be given 60 minutes to cross 600 meters. Those that fail will be ground into coal, along with their dreams.
  3. Swimming on Land – Yes, students will be required to demonstrate their swimming ability, but they will not be allowed to swim in a pool, nay this is no conventional test. Students will be required to swim through two blocks of solid clay. They will have 30 minutes for each block with a 10 minute break in between. Those unable to finish the tasks will be forever left in the blocks, along with their goals and aspirations.
  4. Ability to Fly – No, Weaving 6 perfect baskets, walking on fire, and swimming through clay aren’t enough. Successful premeds must be able to fly. Students will be pushed off a 100 story building and be required to safely land on the ground. Those unable to do so will be scrapped off the sidewalk by a disgruntled city employee.

As you probably have noticed, we clearly do not support these changes. Why you ask, well we here at pre-med hell believe that this undermines the true value of the test. Any successful premed can complete these tasks with ease.  So we formally request that the AAMC remove these mundane tasks from the test, and put their thinking caps back on and actually test us. We suggest, adding subjects such as: cage fighting with rabid squirrels, finding a needle in a haystack, running a mile in someone else’s shoes (preferably a size too small), and eating 5 pounds of cheese. It is our opinion that with these small changes the MCAT can truly become a reliable test of premeds ability.

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