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Thread: Flunked out of Med School scared to start PA

  1. #1
    John Tk is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Flunked out of Med School scared to start PA

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    Hey

    How much easier is the PA program Vs MD program?

    I recently applied and was accepted into a PA school but im terrified. I dont know what the pace of studying is going to be like or the volume of information we have to learn. A few years ago i was accepted into MD and was ecstatic but when i started, it all fell apart. I wish i could make an excuse as to why, but the the true honest reason was i just couldnt keep up with the studying involved. To do 3-4 hrs per night/5 days minimum of studying after a full school day and extra in weekends, was something completely alien to me. Ive never been a crammer of sorts but my academic history has always been a couple of hours here and there over the week, then maybe a month out of an exam where id get a few weeks off school and whole days to myself id put in 5 hrs of 4 days/week of studying max. I didnt last the first term in MD...i became depressed halfway through due to falling so far behind. I resat the term thinking i could start afresh but the same thing happened again. No matte how much i willed to do it i couldn't, i was constantly distracted and it just became more and more depressing as i fell behind.The writing was on the wall and i knew i had to call it quits. It sucks because i really want to be involved in this aspect of healthcare and do something with lots of patient contact which is why medicine was my first choice. During my MD interviews they told me it was my communication skills that got me in, and the same when i interviewed for PA and i definitely believe in that respect i can provide a valuable service. Its just my academic ability thats really holding me back.

    By default we wont have to learn as much as MD school but, is it like doing half the amount or something like that?

  2. #2
    gashopeful is offline Junior Member 529 points
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    PA school in not going to be much easier than Med school. As fat as I know, the only major course that you don't have to take in almost all PA schools (my info can be outdated, but this as when I was looking into PA schools a few years ago) is Biochem.

    Here's a link to a post you may find helpful, in which I shared my personal strategies during basic sciences.

    Keep up the determination and stay focused and will do just fine.

  3. #3
    MSUSpartan2015 is offline Junior Member 515 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Tk View Post
    Hey

    How much easier is the PA program Vs MD program?

    I recently applied and was accepted into a PA school but im terrified. I dont know what the pace of studying is going to be like or the volume of information we have to learn. A few years ago i was accepted into MD and was ecstatic but when i started, it all fell apart. I wish i could make an excuse as to why, but the the true honest reason was i just couldnt keep up with the studying involved. To do 3-4 hrs per night/5 days minimum of studying after a full school day and extra in weekends, was something completely alien to me. Ive never been a crammer of sorts but my academic history has always been a couple of hours here and there over the week, then maybe a month out of an exam where id get a few weeks off school and whole days to myself id put in 5 hrs of 4 days/week of studying max. I didnt last the first term in MD...i became depressed halfway through due to falling so far behind. I resat the term thinking i could start afresh but the same thing happened again. No matte how much i willed to do it i couldn't, i was constantly distracted and it just became more and more depressing as i fell behind.The writing was on the wall and i knew i had to call it quits. It sucks because i really want to be involved in this aspect of healthcare and do something with lots of patient contact which is why medicine was my first choice. During my MD interviews they told me it was my communication skills that got me in, and the same when i interviewed for PA and i definitely believe in that respect i can provide a valuable service. Its just my academic ability thats really holding me back.

    By default we wont have to learn as much as MD school but, is it like doing half the amount or something like that?
    I have friends that are PA's and one of my cousins is finishing his first term of PA school now. His school is a three year program and he has to do a community health-based research thesis as a graduation requirement. He puts in a lot of hours studying, maybe 4 to 5 hours each evening and additional time on weekends as needed. While the volume of material is not nearly as great as in medical school, its still a lot and at the end of the day, you have to devote the time to learning it. You mentioned that your academic ability is what is holding you back. That is a very broad statement and I would think that you should assess what aspect of your ability is holding you back. Is it study skills? Procrastination? English language skills? A lack of desire/interest in the material? A combination of factors? My point is that if you don't fix what lead to your lack of success in medical school, how will your experience in PA school be any different? What self examination / work have you done to ensure that your experience in PA school will be different than medical school?

  4. #4
    John Tk is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Thanks for the replies. English is my first language and i was born here so i dont think thats it...i dont know how to describe my lack of academic ability. What happened was...i would sit down, read something..i would understand it as it was well explained and straight forward.....but then literally 30 mins later i couldnt remember a thing...id tell myself it was just my first viewing so ok its natural but then id go over it again, then 3x then 4x etc...so many many times, with each time taking just as long as before and still it would not stick...it would take a whole week to remember what many could remember in literally 1/4 the time. I mean in comparison to many many students (90% of my year, in both terms), not some who were "just like that". Then if i left it after a whole week of studying, to move on to something else, by the end of the following week id be back to zero recall from the week before, do you know what i mean?. I got help from so many people, study skills,tutors friends etc...none of it worked...nothing was wrong with my methods or notes or anything...it was just the way my memory worked.As i fell more and more behind i became depressed, motivation abandoned me and i felt hopeless... then thats where the procrastination and time wasting would come in becasue whats the point of studying if cant do it?

    Ive just finished a Masters degree in healthcare journalism which was by research, i.e zero memorization, some lab work and just a nice dissertation to hand in at the end. I spent long hours reading journal articles and critically evaluating them (8-12hrs/day 4-6 days per week) and lots of lab time following clear cut instructions but nothing which required retaining vast amounts of information, test or exams to take. It was marked and i ranked in the top 10% of the class. But its really not what i want as a career. This gives me a bit of confidence that maybe i could find something i want to do in medical field but something that i could cope with. I thought Pa because it wouldn't be as hard but now im genuinely scared and dont know what to do

    I realize this might come across as someone just in need of a confidence boost but thats really not it. Its a cold hard fact for me. Give me a technical experiment to perform then as long as i have the protocol in front of me i can do it. Write a 3000 word critical essay using only pubmed journal articles in just a week and its done. But give me 2 weeks to learn that lab protocol, or a month to learn key points from those journal articles and then write it from memory and i just simply cannot do it.
    Last edited by John Tk; 12-10-2015 at 11:59 PM.

  5. #5
    gashopeful is offline Junior Member 529 points
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    In medicine (MD, PA, etc.), you will need to be able to retain info and lots of it. Just thing about how many drugs (and their mechanisms of action, se, interaction, etc.), diseases, and bugs are there? It's hard, but it's doable and most of it is done through repetition.
    Paleo2015 likes this.

  6. #6
    John Tk is offline Newbie 510 points
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    I appreciate that. I just needed to know how much of a difference between MD and Pa there was in terms of retaining info and intensity of the course. MD was over my head in that aspect, if PA is much less info to retain, allowing a good safety net if you fall back a week then maybe my personal academic ability maxed out might be more forgiving in taking a months to learn what MD can in just 1/4 of the time.

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    Doctorintraining1980 is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    Do you get any credits for finishing an international med school or do you have to start from scratch??

  8. #8
    Doctorintraining1980 is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    Fearful about residencies drying up and rather start something!

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