medschool

Preparing for the TOEFL: Writing Section Topics

TOEFL is an important test for any ESL student who wants to enter a university outside his or her country. Preparation for this test is a serious process requiring time, perseverance, and willingness to learn. Unfortunately, you can’t get fully prepared in advance for all of the four sections of the test, but learning to deal with a section of writing is quite possible. Similar to all tests supposed to estimate the knowledge of the English language, TOEFL has a writing section consisting of a summary assignment and an essay assignment. Let’s have a closer look at the latter. Types of TOEFL Topics Actually, the variety of TOEFL essay topics is really wide – you can be asked to discuss something that refers to such general subjects as media, education, technology, personality, family, etc. Yet, it’s possible to classify the essays by type (there are only three types) and learn peculiarities of each of them. #1 Choose a side This essay type will require you to choose between two objects or ideas and give reasons that your decision is based on. The easiest and most common structure for such a piece of writing includes typical five paragraphs. The time you will have during the test for the writing section is only 30 minutes, which means you may have no time to write a complete paper. So, don’t worry if...

Why I Didn’t Do Psychiatry

In some ways, psychiatry is sort of similar to PM&R. For one thing, psychiatry and physiatry sound really similar. They are both pretty laid back, have good hours, not too competitive, great pay. When my psychiatry rotation started and the hours were 8 to 5 with weekends off, I thought, “Hey, I could get used to this.” I thought most of the psychiatrists I worked with were really cool. And there was an abundance of great stories. I was never bored on my psych rotation. And I actually had a knack for it, I think. So what went wrong? 1) I like procedures and psychiatry is one field where you really don’t get to do any procedures. 2) My father is a psychiatrist and told me repeatedly, “Don’t become a psychiatrist.” 3) I don’t know if I believe in a lot of the medical interventions psychiatrists do. Unlike physiatrics interventions like TENS units, which are, of course, rigorously supported by randomized controlled trials. 4) Maybe it’s because it was my first rotation, but I just found psychiatry really sad. I remember calling my mother crying one night because I felt sorry for my patients. I suspect I would have gotten over this though. 5) When I was on my psychiatry rotation, I spent much of the rotation scared that I was going crazy. Actually, #5 was probably my most...

Can We Predict Your Specialty or Career With The Enneagram?

It’s a very popularly known expression, one that usually goes unnoticed by the few looking into picking out their specialties. But what does it truly signify? Is it the amount of hard work you put in? Or perhaps it’s about the time that you dedicate to moving forward? If you’re looking into the context, it might seem like it might be those but allow us to rewire your brain, a bit. Being a medical student, you tend to meet all sorts of people and deal with all sorts of cases which means, based on the type of person you are, it will matter quite a lot when you’re picking out a certain field. It’s actually a fact that’s been proved right through several studies as well. You can’t be a straightforward extrovert and go into nursing; imagine telling your patients straight out about how annoying they are! Because let’s face it, some patients will be quite the handful. Well then, how should you pick it out? You already have a lot of responsibilities on your shoulders, life isn’t easy for a millennial who’s figuring out the world! That means handling a decision as crucial as your career would need a little extra help. Millennials such as yourself tend to face the trouble of not knowing how to handle such pressure. You know what would be a good solution in...

7 Things Medical Students Must Know About USMLE Step 1 Exam

The United States Medical Licensing (USMLE) Step 1 exam is the first stage of your medical career. You need to take this test before you can move on to Step 2 CS, followed by Step 3, and finally becoming a doctor! Here are 7 things you need to know about the USMLE Step 1 test: What is the Format? The computer-based exam takes place over an 8-hour period in one day. It is divided into 7 sections, with 60 minutes allotted to each. Each section features up to 40 questions in multiple-choice format, for a maximum of 280 total questions. You get 45 minutes of break time, divided over a maximum of 6 separate breaks. If you finish a section early, the extra time gets added to your total break time. Skipping the optional 15-minute tutorial before the exam adds an extra 15 minutes to your total break time. What is the Application Process? Medical school students or graduates of an accredited medical program in the US or Canada need to apply through the NBME (National Board of Medical Examiners). Students and graduates from med schools/programs outside the US and Canada need to apply through the ECFMG (Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates). What Does the Exam Cover? The content of the exam covers basic scientific principles as well as your ability to solve problems using them. Categories covered in...

Why I Didn’t Do Dermatology

I’ve mentioned on this blog before that I had good grades and scores in med school, although not freaking awesome. So it seems like the reason I didn’t do dermatology should be obvious: I wasn’t freaking awesome. And that’s what you need to be to match in derm these days. But between you and me, I actually did have a possible opportunity to do derm. My cousin is a big cheese dermatologist and assured me multiple times that he’d get me a residency spot if I wanted it. I don’t know if this was a true offer, but needless to say, I didn’t take him up on it. It was tempting, for sure. Dermatologists make good money and have a great lifestyle. I like procedures and dermatologist get to do lots of those. Part of the reason I didn’t try was because of location (yet again), but there were some other reasons: 1) I looked at the people in my class who matched in derm and I thought about those people being my colleagues for the rest of my life, and I felt ill. 2) I felt that as a dermatologist, the pressure to have perfect skin would be too intense, and would cause me to break out. 3) I have a slight inherited tremor in my hands that I worry might get worse with age and keep me...

5+ Tricks Every Medico Must Know: How to Become Competitive Expert

Getting into medical school is not easy, but it is definitely doable. Many have done it and there is no reason why you could not do it as well. It is all about following the right strategies and making sure that your application has all the necessary requirements. If your goal is to get into a fellowship program, you need to understand that the competition is tough, but that does not mean that the other applicants are better than you. Here are some of the best tips to help you gain a competitive advantage as a medico. Do additional work When you are in med school, one of the best things you can do is to work on a side project in your field. You can use this project as an addition to your application. If you decide to go this route, it is important to find a great mentor to work with. This can be someone who is an expert in the field you are trying to work on, or a fellow student. Getting a publication in your field is a great advantage and allows you to use some of your connections to write you letters of recommendation. To do a gastroenterology fellowship personal statement might seem like a difficult task, but with the backup of some great recommendation letters, you might make your job a little easier....

So, How Do I Stay Busy In Medical School?

Medical school is hard. There is no denying that hard-set fact. However, in order to make it through with your sanity still intact, you need to look outside the classroom. Here’s how to stay busy in medical school. The time you spend going through those basic science courses, organ systems, and patient cases is undoubtedly going to give you enough on your plate. However, I believe that it is a person’s interest beyond his or her core passion for learning the art of clinical practice that made them want to come to medical school. For most of us, it started when we took a hard look in the mirror and asked how we can make an impactful change in the world. You may have been someone who wanted to improve access to services and volunteered in the community or you might have worked at an HIV clinic to further detection and management of the ailment. For me, health literacy and public education was my calling. As I went through high school and college, I gradually and surely began to witness a huge divide in what health care providers can tell their patients. Be it through counseling or direct prescriptions, there often seemed to be a deficit in receiving that same guidance by the patients. Part of the reason was a lack of clear communication and consideration from the provider...