Thursday, August 2, 2007

Contain your shock - I wrote another post!!

I just thought I would write a couple of thoughts about the graduate medicine experience that have been floating through my head lately.

We get lectures every week - usually around 7 or 8 of them. However, the content and order is completely variable, and we will often have weeks where it seems that we have covered the intricate detail of XYZ cellular process, and have not been "taught" one thing on the major pathological process of the week.

Frustrating? Yes. Confusing? Often.

One of the odd things that people who are not in the course don't seem to expect is that we don't have any real kind of continuity in our lecturers. We may have the same expert twice in the one week talking about the same topic, and then not see them again for another year or two. We certainly don't have regular lecturers who guide us through the concepts in a logical fashion week after week. In essence, you have to learn how to guide yourself.

We have two or three academics from the university who seem to come in semi-regularly to teach in their areas, which helps. However, they often seem to teach in areas about which they are not experts. This can be offputting, particularly when you recognise that something they are brushing over is not quite right. (This happens when you are already a qualified person in the area concerned and you recognise that they are teaching material that because obsolete 20 years ago, not because you read something different in a magazine somewhere!)

Thus, I have become a hoarder of textbooks. I look up to their authors as I used to idolise my lecturers in my undergraduate courses. Just joking!! But seriously, I am getting sentimental about my textbooks where I used to not particularly care about them. I have also noticed other people do this.

To do well in this course, you have to be HIGHLY self-motivated to the extent where you are able to work out your own study schedule and take an educated guess at the areas you are supposed to be covering. Past exams and the advice of students in higher years is invaluable.

When motivation starts to lag, the only person who is capable of pulling you back into line is . . . yourself.

I don't mind all of this. It is just different. I am still rapt to be studying medicine, even if it isn't all sunshine, fluffy white clouds and ponies. And why the goat? No particular reason. Perhaps if I were as stubborn as one, I would get more study done! Besides, I love the hair - that goat looks high-maintenance!!!


tazzie said...

I think they do this on purpose. Because the medical field is one where you never know 100% what you're going to run into on any given day, they want you to take up the ball and be a "self-starter". I've noticed that in fields where you have to think on your feet, and keep up with new advances in that field they almost always teach in the same manner. I feel there are many pros and cons to this approach. However, you'll always know how to find what you need in those books now!!

The Girl said...

True. I love my books. :)