Med School Must Have Study Resources: The First Year


Med school requires a ton of memorization in short amount of time. I personally found the flash cards to be the best way to get this done. Making personalized flashcards take time, but it is totally worth the time. I think it is useable even after you are done with the course. Anki web version is free, but the app is $25. If you prefer a free app, then go with Brain Scape. 


Microbiology is a subject that is not hard, but rather cumbersome. There is no cohesive logic or content, instead there are lists of information you simply need to know by memorizing. Sketchy Medical is an incredible way to study microbiology for those of you who finds memorization boring. The Sketchy Medical team tell you stories that are easy to remember that go along with memorable cartoons. The method helps you to learn microbiology quickly and for good. Totally worth money! The alternative is Picmonic, which includes pharm, biochem and other subjects in addition. But after trying it for free, I did not work out for me. You can always try for free for a few days and make your decision. 


I personally loved Microscopic Anatomy. But most of my classmates found the subject dry and boring. Unfortunately, microscopic anatomy is going to show up a lot in pathology in the future. So it is going to be very helpful if you have good foundation. The histology slides initially all look the same, which makes it difficult to get used to. The trick is simply to look at enough slides to orient yourself. University of Michigan's Virtual Slides are the best resource that is accessible without a heavy light microscopes. 


Anatomy is another subject that you need to memorize, but it is more tangible if you spend quality time in anatomy lab. It is more efficient to pre-study anatomy before the actual lab. Electronic Atlases are your life savers, because you can use the search function to find structures. It saves so much time. Cartoon atlases are great, but things never look like that in real life. I highly recommend Colored Atlas of Anatomy. Netters have an app, which was highly recommended by my friend, but it is pricy. I would choose the app over the hard copy if you want to buy Netters Atlas.  


When it comes to physiology, Costanzo is your book. BRS Costanzo is a bullet point version, which I used. But I wish I used the full Costanzo text book, because I did not pick on important concepts and nuances from the BRS version. Physiology is a very important subject that is worth spending time the first time around. 


 Neuroscience, particularly neuroanatomy, is one of the harder subjects during first year. I personally did not use any outside resources for this class, but I really wish I did. High Yield Neuroanatomy is a book that is recommended all around by others.