Re: The MOST family friendly schools

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Is there a website for the indep. study portion through Ohio State?

Here’s a very informative guide, and I read through this when I was trying to decide what pathway to do.

Here’s the general website with our yearly schedule, etc.

Do you have to show up to class at least once a week or something?

Like the regular pathway people we have patient centered medicine lectures or small groups. Also we have physician development class. So it comes out to having to come in about once per week. That is the time when we meet up as an entire class. But in terms of academic, basic science classes, we have no obligation to come. Although, the professor who is module leader for that section may hold review sessions or meet with students.

Do you get a chance to interact with other MS1 students? Do you have study groups?

Yes, I have good friends who are in the same pathway and we meet to study as often or more then the the other pathway students. We have study groups. In fact, here, we have a professor who leads “student driven study groups”. So about once a week a group of 5 of us meet with him to get quizzed and to talk about the unit. Other ISP students come as well, so we always meet new people through that. Also, lunchtime in the ISP library/lounge is always a time to socialize.

How well do the independent pathway students perform on tests and such compared to the students in other pathways?

As a whole, the group of people who went ISP did better in anatomy then the other pathway. Anatomy was when we were all together. I’m told that both pathways do about the same on the boards.

Do you have kids? The main reason for me to choose it would be to have a more flexible schedule for my kids,

I don’t have kids, but I have a new puppy and a working boyfriend. The flexibility to take it easy one day and plan for a hard core day makes me rest easier. I like knowing that I can study after the boyfriend goes to bed or while he’s at work. Also there is always an option in this pathway to easily take a leave of absence…without restarting… and there is a 5 year option, where you can take 3 years to get the 2 year curriculum done.

but I’m wondering what the cons are

The cons are byproducts of the pros. With the flexibility of scheduling your own tests and your own study schedule, it can be your downfall. Getting behind and exceeding max dates are commom problems. I struggle with finding the right balance of knowing when I’m “ready” to take the test (and I never FEEL ready) and just plunging in. I’m really trying to stick with the dates I plan to and taking it no matter how much I’m panicking beforehand. Of course there is study burn out. With more time to study, it’s not even noon sometimes and my eyes seem to be going crosseyed looking at my books! Keeping the motivation up and resisting the urge to take day after day off is difficult too. Of course I’m only working on my third module, so I’m still striving to be a better student and improving my concentration stamina.

I would love to hear more about the independent pathway and how it’s working out for you.

To me, although every once in a while I feel a twinge of longing for the perks of a lecture based pathway, (sometimes I wish I could be spoonfed cetain difficult concepts), I am overall completely satisfied with my decision. For me, everytime I sit down to study, I am completely alert, “rested”, and ready to learn. This makes studying more efficient and enjoyable to me. I feel like activities and volunteering can better be worked into my schedule without feeling “over programmed.” I am also looking into research opportunities, which I wouldn’t consider if I had class to go to all morning. To me, the decision to do this pathway has to do with learning style and personal preference. I like being able to learn at my own pace and remove myself from the pretest panic/tension that a whole class seems to feel. I produce enough panic for myself!