Saturday, 15 October 2016

Personal Experience: What to do when you are failing in Med School

Getting admitted into medical school is hard. Being able to stay in medical school is a lot more harder. For most people especially those on the side,they believe the greatest work is getting into med school but for we that are in already,we say they don;t really have an idea. From the voluminous textbooks to the unending workloads are some of the challenges most medical students face. This blog post will give you little tips on what to do when you are failing your med school quizzes,tests or exams.

What is the difficult part of medical school? Some will argue is being able to finish the work load, others will say it is being able to remember all that you have read on the exam day. But I beg to differ, the most difficult part of med school is being able to convince yourself that you truly deserve to be in your class. I know you will be wondering what I am all about now; just wait and hear me out.

When I first got into med school, I had this bad ass conviction that this journey was going to be a sweet ride for me. Why? I had always been a straight A student, had never failed any test,exam or class. For me,it was going to be business as usual. I was so sure of myself until the first batch of results of our first exams started coming in. Out of the 3 courses I sat for, I was not able to get a 70% score in any. In fact I failed one,I scored 46%. It was the most embarrassing moment of my academic journey. I had to look at the score board. In that particular course I failed, there were people who aced it very well. At that fleeting moment, I concluded that I was not supposed to be here. I thought maybe I would be better off in the Engineering Faculty. I was intimidated. If you are not lucky enough to convince yourself again that you are at the right place, this would be the beginning of your bitter chronicles of failure in medical school until maybe you are finally kicked out.


1. There is enough success to go around everyone in your class: Trust me when I say this. Most people who have failed one or more courses in med school have this mentality "it is only possible for Jacob, Mike, Clare and Sydney to have an A in this course. I cannot score an A or B". Sad thing really! Reality and your healing comes when you realize that everyone and anyone can be successful, Just because a particular person is successful does not mean that you can't be successful. If Jason is always scoring 70% - 82% in Gross Anatomy, you can score a 92%. Work with this mentality and be really overwhelmed by the change you will register. While at first, some of the students in your class might seem like your superiors, slowly you can grow to seeing them as your peers.

2. Always remember the reason why you applied for med school: When in doubt, remember you applied for med school,sat long hours to study for the entrance exams and eventually got in because you saw yourself becoming a doctor one day. Remember all the times you thought of how to help children in your community constantly falling sick. Remember the times you always waited for dad or mum to come home so you can touch his stethoscope or wear his white coat. Remember that old and sick relation you told the last time you went home to hang in there that you will heal him soon. Remember how happy you and your family will be on your induction day. Keeping this in mind will straighten your path and strengthen your resolve to move pass the "rock" stage.

3. Seek for mentoring: There will always be that senior colleague or even class mate that you have a good relationship with and is always doing well. Go to him or her for help. Ask them to teach you how to study and how to tackle exam questions. You may be failing not because you don't work hard but because you don't work smart. Find someone to help keep you moving in the right track.

It is very easy to get discouraged in medical school. It is equally easy to get motivated there too. Doctors have the privilege of taking care of human lives so it is not something to be taken lightly or joke about. The difficulty in med school will help shape you into becoming a better physician tomorrow and being able to manage crises properly.

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