Posted tagged ‘Fortnight of Hell’

Fortnight of Hell – Addendum A – Shelf Exams

December 4, 2008

I keep mentioning shelves and I’m sure you know I don’t mean 棚*…

The NBME Basic Science Subject Tests for Medical Students (commonly referred to as “shelf” exams) are standardized tests, much like the SAT IIs one might have taken in high school. According to their website:

NBME subject tests are achievement tests in a broad sense, requiring medical students to solve scientific and clinical problems. Although students’ performance on the tests will reflect the learning specific to their course and clerkship experiences, their test scores will also reflect educational development resulting from the overall medical school experience. These tests are constructed to be appropriate for a broad range of curricular approaches and have at least four distinct advantages over locally constructed examinations in the assessment of student achievement.

  • The tests provide national norms and relevant descriptive information.
  • Considerable care is taken in preparing these materials, with items selected only after extensive review and pretesting.
  • These tests concentrate heavily on application and integration of knowledge rather than recall of isolated facts.
  • They attain better accuracy of measurement.

NBME subject tests are intended to complement other sources of information about the educational progress of medical students. The test results should be interpreted in light of other available information. Likewise, curriculum evaluation cannot be based on test results alone. The quality of teaching can and should be evaluated by frequent peer observation and student feedback, not inferred solely from the level of test scores. Medical school faculty and administration should not view the results of NBME subject tests as the beginning and end of evaluation.

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Fortnight of Hell

December 3, 2008

And so it begins…

Thursday, December 4th – Neuroscience Lab Practical

Friday, December 5th – Histology Lab Practical (AM)

………………………………..Anatomy Lab Practical (PM)

Tuesday, December 9th – Biochemistry Shelf

Wednesday, December 10th – Histology Shelf

Friday, December 12th – Anatomy Shelf

Monday, December 15th – Neuroscience Shelf

Tuesday, December 16th – Physiology Shelf

Thursday, December 18th – Mini III

It’s going to be a tough two weeks. Pray for me, guys. I don’t know how I’ll make it through…

Endurance

November 25, 2008

On Sunday, I ran the Salybia 5K. Although I placed the same as I did last semester (16th of the 34 female runners and walkers), I improved my time by nearly 3 minutes! However, that new-found speed is currently being paid for by my poor quadriceps which still ache every time I try to descend a flight of steps. With my trusty old iPod set to my inspirational Sunday morning mix, I started the race with an early burst of speed and was one of the first to come over the hill going up to the Annex and down the road that ends in a T-junction by the coastline. As we passed the halfway mark, my stomach began to churn and my lungs began to burn and people I’d passed began to pass me. I slowed my pace to a jog, trying to get my breathing back to normal and whispering to my GI tract, first threats, then pleas. By the time I’d reached the three-quarters water station, I’d stopped running entirely. As I power-walked through a stretch with no shade, another student came up along my side. Earlier in the week, after she’d mistaken me for my pal who placed 2nd last semester, she asked if I’d be running again and claimed that she was much slower than either of us. She joined me for a few steps and then chided, “You’re going to speed up again, right? You can’t finish back here with me.” I didn’t just want to dash off and leave her behind but I did begin to pick up my pace. Maybe I’d gained my second wind or maybe it was because someone was expecting me to finish ahead but I started running again and didn’t stop until I’d crossed the finish line. (more…)