Med school is now parodying itself.

The required reading for immunology today was 92 pages.

I could almost go with that – that’s sort of in the realm of possibility for a very busy day of studying – but the required reading for epidemiology?  Was 160 pages.

That’s 9 chapters, 252 pages, and nearly a solid inch of textbook.

But of course, we’re only tested on what’s included in the lecture, so I really have no idea why this is required reading, or (more importantly) why they think anybody will actually do it.  I mean, if it’s optional, call it optional, you know?

Metropolis:  No one is going to read 9 chapters in a day.  Especially not when we’re spending 5 hours of that day in class and studying the lectures for at least another 3.

Not to mention that tomorrow’s reading assignments involve over 70 pages “to be read before class” on top of a lengthy homework assignment about a case-control study article that looks soul-crushingly boring.

In summary: No.

9 thoughts on “Med school is now parodying itself.

  1. I think you’re at about the point I was in first year when I stopped going to class and stopped reading unless I totally didn’t understand something. My grades improved measurably after that….just gotta figure out what works for you and do it! They can’t really REQUIRE you to read unless they’re quizzing you on something in the reading and that’s …. so totally undergrad. 😉

    • Quizzing us on the reading IS so totally undergrad, haha. I’m really glad they don’t do it.

      Yeah, I’m going to relegate the epi book to the bookcase alongside everything else I never read.

      I go to class for social reasons, basically – but I’ve been thinking for awhile about how much more productive it would be to try being one of the students who doesn’t go..

  2. Wow, that makes me feel so much better about the 40 pages I have to read today. I mean, aside from the fact that your reading is optional and mine…isn’t.

  3. That’s cute that they think they can assign required reading like that.

    I’ve made it through med school quite well so far with very minimal textbook use. I’m terrible at absorbing information from them, and I don’t really like them as a concept either.

    • Cute is a perfect word for it.

      Yeah, most of my classmates would agree. I’m the odd person out for preferring textbooks. (That is, I *was*. Gotta come up with a different strategy now. I’m pretty stubborn, but even I can see that my favorite study strategy won’t work any longer..)

  4. Yeah, I don’t know why Epi people think 160 pages is a reasonable quantity to get through in one day. It’s horribly dry, also. My recommendation would be to skim, or just not do it. Don’t sweat it, you’ll know enough to pass.

      • Seriously with CC studies, all you really need to know is this: use the odds ratio, you can’t estimate disease prevalence using this method, good for studying rare diseases, it’s really hard to select the controls (and there are a lot of different ways to do this) and if you do a bad job of this you risk severely biasing your study, the odds ratio approximates the relative risk when the prevalence of the disease in the exposed and unexposed are both low, and finally, you select subjects based on disease status, and the design allows you to study multiple exposures.

        Tada! Now go have fun with your evening instead of being bored by this stuff.

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