10 tips on how to memorize for medical school

10 Tips On How To Memorize For Medical School

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Have you ever experienced reading medical jargon but kept forgetting the concepts? That’s me as well. Here are 10 tips on how to memorize for medical school

In this blog, I will help you navigate how you can survive your medical school journey!

tips on how to memorize for med school

Tip #1: Study In The Morning

Time management and productivity are a massive part of being a medical student. It can be challenging to balance life and family demands while still acing the tests.

In addition, starting your day with reviewing will likely set a productive tone for the rest of your day. With this, it will be easier to accomplish tasks while staying on track. 

If you are a morning person, you might find setting up your academic session first thing in the morning helpful. This allows you to dedicate your remaining hours in the afternoon to personal matters or extra-curricular activities. 

Why is studying in the morning essential?

It is up to you if you want to study in the morning. After all, we have our own time for productivity. 

However, mornings are when your mind is fresh, reducing your chances of postponing your review time.

In fact, this technique is valuable even if you are not a morning person. As your day progresses, this technique will equip you with the mental capacity to make the most of your study session. 

Bonus: Want better grades with more free time (and less stress)? Get access to our free 3-step study system here to see what other top students do that you may not be doing!

Tip #2: Find A Comfortable Place To Study

Several factors can affect your concentration when reviewing. In fact, finding a comfortable study place can lead to more productive and more focused reviewing sessions

For instance, you need someplace incredibly serene to focus on your review materials. On the other hand, some students prefer putting on music or going to a public place.

Once you have found the perfect place to review, you will likely establish a more consistent study pattern. This practice allows you to stay organized and achieve your medical school goals.

Why is it necessary to find a comfortable place to study?

Every student has his or her own preferred place to review. The ideal study environment is often someplace you have to create for yourself.

It does not matter whether your spot is in a quiet corner of a library or a cozy corner of your room. Taking your time to find a comfortable space can pay off in the long term.

study for med school

Tip #3: Use Mnemonics For Medical Concepts

Just like how we get familiarized with the colors of the rainbow, ROY G. BIV, mnemonics are a fun way to remember complex names of organs, nerves, and names of drugs.

For example, you can use SPACE DIGS as a mnemonic for depression symptoms:

  • Sleep Disruption
  • Psychomotor Retardation
  • Appetite Change
  • Concentration Loss
  • Energy Loss
  • Depressed or Dysphoric Mood
  • Interest Diminished
  • Guilt
  • Suicidal Thoughts

Another fun mnemonic that most medical school students should know is the I GET PP SMASHED for some of the most common causes of pancreatitis:

  • Idiopathic
  • Gallstones
  • Ethanol
  • Trauma
  • Posterior Duodenal Ulcer Rupture
  • Pancreas Divisum
  • Steroids
  • Mumps
  • Autoimmune Disease
  • Scorpion Sting
  • Hypercalcemia or Hypertriglyceridemia
  • ERCP
  • Drugs

How do mnemonics help in retaining medical concepts?

What is more interesting is you can make your own mnemonic and associate them with a funny memory. Chances are, you can easily remember the mnemonic you created whenever you come across the term in your test.

Making your review more efficient while staying efficient can help you master the material and improve your academic performance.

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Tip #4: Associate Topics With Images Via Picmonic

You know what most people say, “A picture is worth more than a thousand words.” This goes the same in reviewing for medical school. 

Allan Paivio’s cognitive theory of dual coding states that creating mental images in your head can enhance your learning experience.

Associating photos with something you need to recall alters your thinking pattern optimistically. As a visual and auditory learner, Picmonic helped me study and retain what I have read.

In addition, Picmonic’s mobile app is very convenient — it allows me to study on the go. Their short academic videos are entertaining and help you reinforce what you have learned

Picmonic has been picking up positive reviews from medical school students in different parts of the globe. Their research-proven learning system has exciting characters, stories, and built-in exams.

On top of that, this review companion has thousands of complex facts and topics to help you master the review resources you often struggle to learn. This also allows you to reduce school stress while boosting your exam performance.

Picmonic only has four main categories:

  • Discover: To pick a specific topic.
  • Learn: To play a video lesson.
  • Quiz: To take a quiz.
  • Review: To access Picmonic’s clever spaced-repetition review algorithms.

Here are what you can expect in Picmonic:

  • Quick and effective two-minute Picmonic videos.
  • It connects tough topics with fun characters. 
  • It ties the facts into memorable stories. 
  • You can access topic summaries with fact definitions and images you will likely see on the test.
  • You may add or custom topics and characters to create your own Picmonic reviewer. 
  • You can adjust audio speed controls.

How does Picmonic help medical school students?

To this day, I still remember some things I have learned from Picmonic. This review companion constantly creates content to help students review by taking recall quizzes and completing daily quizzes

Med schools indeed require students to memorize numerous medical concepts. However, it is logical thinking and applying the topics that make up a significant percentage of your medical program. 

The feature I loved the most about using Picmonic is how simple and plain it is. I can easily curate it into my medical school curriculum.

pomodoro technique

Tip #5: Use The Pomodoro Method

If you are having trouble managing your time and being productive simultaneously, the Pomodoro technique could be a game-changer for you. This method can help you maximize your time instead of being against it. 

Pomodoro divides your study sessions into 25-minute intervals, followed by 5-minute breaks. Every four cycles, you get a more extended break.

Aside from allowing you to break the topics into manageable chunks and remain focused, the Pomodoro technique can help you avoid burnout through its regular break times.

How does the Pomodoro technique assist medical school students?

Preparing for exams can be extremely stressful. Your Pomodoro breaks will serve as a reward, helping you stay fresh and focused during study sessions.

In addition, Pomodoro is a highly effective method for medical school learners looking for a more organized way of breaking down review sessions while taking regular breaks.

Tip #6: Use Flashcards

Perhaps one of your go-to review techniques in high school is using flashcards. This way, you distribute concepts in small chunks, making them easier to digest and understand.

If you want to use this technique, you must ensure you are doing it correctly.

For instance, too many cards can be counterproductive as you will have time to study them all. Further, too much information in a few flashcards is not ideal.

How can flashcards help in reviewing?

Your flashcards must cover high-yield topics only. Additionally, the number of cards should depend on the complexity of your test and the time you need to prepare for it. 

Flashcards are also a convenient tool for everyone. This is because you can customize them by following your learning style.

Bonus: Want to learn how I got a 3.9 GPA in med school using a simple-to-follow study strategy? Get access to my exact study method from med school for free here. 

Tip #7: Do Active Recalling

Active recalling is one of the most potent techniques for medical students if mastered. 

Aside from reading and highlighting phrases and sentences, try extracting keywords. You may select a few keywords per passage and then try to recall the connection between them.

As you fill in the gaps, you also try to remember what you learned from the lesson. With this, you are training your memory to function better by actively recalling facts.

Does active recalling help in memorizing and retaining information?

Repetition is essential to memorization. Reviewing your material repeatedly becomes more ingrained in your memory, helping you reinforce information actively.

Aside from that, actively recalling topics and applying them in real-life scenarios can enhance your problem-solving abilities, ultimately leading you to more outstanding future clinical duties.

Tip #8: Maximize Your Resources By Answering Self-Testing Materials

The majority of medical students from across the globe can vouch for the success of using self-testing review materials. Such products are available for MCAT exam preparations and later for board exams.

Answer self-testing materials as if you are in for a marathon. My advice would be to allot one to two hours of your time to answering and gradually extend your review time to mimic your test time.

On top of that, answering self-testing exams provides immediate feedback regarding your academic performance. This lets you adjust your study routines and strategies accordingly.

How can self-testing materials help medical school students with their reviews?

Self-testing medical products are not magic. You cannot instantly pass the real exam if you are not making an effort to review.

However, these products can boost your memory and help make critical reasoning much easier. Another good thing is you can concentrate more on taking a self-assessment quiz to check the subject areas you still need to improve.

more efficient way to study - Broken

Tip #9: Focus More On Understanding, Not Merely Memorizing

Just like reviewing for other programs, you cannot just pass an exam by simply knowing the concept. You must develop a deeper understanding of every subject area to better care for your future patients.

While it is true that medical school demands students to memorize topics, it is critical to comprehend them rather than just memorize or familiarize them. You may connect new information or cases to existing knowledge.

This does not only help you find a more practical application for it. It also allows you to retain pieces of information in the long term.

Is it more important to memorize concepts or focus more on understanding?

Understanding specific cases in medicine can help with an accurate diagnosis.

Instead of just matching symptoms to a list of probable illnesses, apprehending the underlying problem can assist in targeting its root cause and deliver better treatment choices.

Tip #10: Combine Several Learning Methods

Your brain works like a muscle. The more you use and operate it, the better shape it gets.

With all the techniques I have listed above, you may choose one method or mix some to memorize and retain information for a lifetime. In addition, trying everything for the same topics and picking what works for you better could be an excellent idea.

Should you combine review methods or pick only one?

Training your mind by associating yourself with numerous review styles can enhance your comprehension. This allows you to gain deeper insight into specific medical subjects.

Bonus: Want better grades with more free time (and less stress)? Get access to our free 3-step study system here to see what other top students do that you may not be doing!

Despite these ten methods, always remember that we learn differently. After all, there are better options than one-size-fits-all in this scenario.

The fastest way to memorize for medical school still relies on what matches your schedule and your learning level or ability. This is why I suggest you try different strategies and uncover what works pleasingly for you. In addition, you may combine techniques, not only choose one!

I hope you can enhance your memorization and comprehension mastery with what I have listed here. Further, may you succeed in medical school with solid commitment and practice.

Whenever you’re ready, there are 4 ways I can help you:

1. The Med School Handbook:  Join thousands of other students who have taken advantage of the hundreds of FREE tips & strategies I wish I were given on the first day of medical school to crush it with less stress. 

2. The Med School BlueprintJoin the hundreds of students who have used our A-Z blueprint and playbook for EVERY phase of the medical journey so you can start to see grades like these. 

3. Med Ignite Study ProgramGet personalized help to create the perfect study system for yourself so you can see better grades ASAP on your medical journey & see results like these. 

4. Learn the one study strategy that saved my grades in medical school here (viewed by more than a million students like you). 

If you appreciated this post, how about checking out some of our other blogs for more great content:

 Until the next one my friend…

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