Physics/Chemistry study advice

I was once told that physics is like being a mathematician except with more ego and concepts. Being in my second semester of physics, I decide to create a collection of study strategies for my subjects.

1. Study about a week in advance. Reduce the amount of cramming and stress. 

2. Make a study guide… this was a slightly issue I had earlier in the semester, I believed that I only had to understand problems… but that is not physics… it is understanding concepts and acing problems. So I made a Cornell note summary packet. For example

  • I will be tested on chapter 20-23, that is 4 chapters, so I forced myself to condense my notes for each chapter to one page of notes, condensing notes, and putting it in my own words is the best!
  • Redo most homework problems, using the equation sheet from the exam
  • Taking the practice exam, early enough to meet with the professor, and pin point my errors.

Other methods I have heard of is:

Section off by chapter/lecture//Cornell//Draw figures/ diagrams, color coding is your friend

3. Color coding, Equations in one color and concepts in other. Use different fonts: bold, all capital letters.

4. Physics is math mixed with information. I recommend taking it with Calculus. I wish I did. The subjects go hand and hand.

5. Be familiar with equation sheet, use it for your homework and practice problems. Understand the concept- when/why to use equations as well as - helping you ace the exam.

6. It is easy to get intimated by problems. First break it down

  • Preform all of the lecture notes problems. That is core, the foundation from the professor himself. You want to understand these
  • Do all the homework once and check answers. Then do it again, then circle and make note of the problems you cannot solve by yourself. It is important to preform the step of redoing. If you miss a minus sign or even a slight error, is the difference between the strong and weak students. 
  • Write the formulas you may need when preforming your homework. It will help you memorize. A blogger by the name hexaneheels, recommends learning over time (best tip!)
  • Units are so important! 

My advice can be used for “Technical science - courses” like Physics and Chemistry


1. Find a place to write down on a blank sheet of paper. Write on the top “Who you are” and on the back “Where you want to be”. Dedicate serious time to jotting thoughts on this paper. Use mind maps, drawings, even color code. Force yourself to think for yourself.

2. Try craving out time to assess your schedule and your professors. Why kinds of professors are making your stronger as a student, which professors are not? Create an office hour appointment. Create a list of problems/ ideas you want to clarify. 

3. What do you do repeatedly. Are you finding yourself devoting more time to a class, or sport. This question is beyond procrastinate, many student procrastinate, but with this question try getting at the core. Find what interests you and what activities are on autopilot versus those on manual.

4. Write down your goals. Mentally and physically create scene where your dreams outweigh excuses

5. Enhance the good rather than (repeatedly and unsuccessful) fix the bad.

6. Try to be dependable. Return phones calls and text when you can. Little things matter. That includes calling family and friends time to time.

7. Learn when to say no.

8.Be present. Sometimes thinking of future can make one lazy in the present. Just start. That is often times the hardest part.

9. Find love in your studies, and your student life. I think if one loves and is engaged in their work, procrastination might be more avoidable. 

10. Take care of yourself

As one semesters closes another one opens. The routine begins, new pencils, stickie notes, and note books, planners have smiles and students have motivation. 

But then the motivation begins to fluctuate. Some highs, some lows, the ability to pick up ones pride and start a new strategy is difficult. I do not think the hardest aspect of learning let alone getting good grades in motivation, instead I think it is how well a student has mastered themselves. In honors of finals week, I has created a list of thoughts aimed to help students improve their navigation of being a student:

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Cranquis Podcast

  • "Humans on both sides of the examination table"
  • "Rich doctor myth. That is a small minority." And when you have health care rhetoric drumming that myth into existence, it makes it hard to strengthen the physician to patient relationship. 
  • "Shock how much money people think you are making and how much debt you have"
  • "Doctors have a responsibility to be financial transparent. Income is usually a fair income, the income is not why we went into medical, but our income keeps us in medicine."
  • "{Tumblr medblr community} we are moving through the trench."

My thoughts

This podcast was excellent. Social determinants of health, med blr community, premed bloggers (myself). I found myself nodding and thinking doctors are real people, telling myself stop romanizing and dehumanizing the profession I want so bad, just work in the present moment, pray, and medical school will come to me, I will make it.

I am also taking the Mcat in September, and I also think sometimes about what if I do not get into medical school:

I have no idea where my life will go. (I know, scary)

The hoops medical students must jump through are easy to forget about, but very real. Many of my classmates have studied for and taken the MCAT multiple times …. laying awake in bed agonizing over whether your failure to grasp Organic Chemistry might be a sign of your future competence as a physician is horrible. Merit based, competition, is exciting and also very stunted in terms of viewing students who complain as lazy or ungrateful when the students are being human.

Then, enter medical school (if lucky) and residency, notorious for being times of dangerously low sleep, health, time ….. How can it all be done? Something’s gotta give. I’ve always promised myself that I would prioritize family, friends, and happiness above all things. But I’ve also promised myself that I would rather be no doctor than a mediocre one.

In the end, an intense love for the human body and an intense love for people prevails. While I want to help people, and “cure”, I feel as a doctor I want to connect with patients, educate them about their health, and weaken fear. Being sick is a fear. While I cannot abolish that fear I can reduce the amount. Since I was senior in high school cranquis has been a mentor and asset. For that I am grateful. 

I respect medicine, the mcat, medical students, health professionals, because the professions puts a value on healing, and competition.

I understand this may seem as a ramble but I have a few questions. If you are a health student/professional, how would you answer the following:

Do you think increasing access to healthcare will improve health disparities?

What are your thoughts on medical (MD/DO, PA, NP) education, am I over- exaggerating the context, or I am finding realistic insights?

What are your thoughts on healthcare, can the biomedical and psychosocial model ever combine?

Reflecting on your experience as health student/professional, do you wish there was more collaboration among md-phd, do, pa, np?

20 things I learned my sophomore year of college {Share}

1. Remember what the mistakes taught me. (via : Things I learned freshman year)

2. Block distractions… but be smart. “I learned I could do physics for hours with my ipod on and my study playlist. I also have started putting my phone in my bag when I study, and some hot tea is always a nice push!

3. Studying… College demands technology. So much so, many students including myself engage screens for more hours a day than sleep!

4. I am completely awed by how much I have learned in 2 years, at the exact same time, horrified by all the things I repeatedly forget.

5. Learned the art of observing and listening. Learn to find positives and negatives in structures and ideas.

6. Learning that in academica ideas are legitimate when they have been published in a book. In that theory most times out weighs lived experience, such dominance seems unhealthy. Very insular.

7. Follow your passion, is not one size fits all. Students have loads of the debt, and now the college debt is akin to a high school diploma. While education can be both inside and outside the classroom, certification of degrees, create hierarchy, act as status markers, and if more students will need graduate degrees to compete then why not follow ones passion then? Or …

8. Learned to find mentors who have found their spark.

9. Learned production is valued. Grades are valued, and with sophomore year being quite difficult for me, it is important to understand how numbers create options. Connections are important and valuable but numbers create options.

10. I have a lovely circle of friends, but when meeting others at party or social gathering, it can be a little tricky. I have learned, when I interact with an adult, try to have a conversation with him or her about a challenging topic. Ask for views to be explained as well as share yours. Push for clarity and be interesting.

11. When I am nervous I can go to my phone. I’ve learned, that technology at my fingertips can create missed opportunities. It is always sweet to show one’s patience, manners and social etiquette.

12. This year I unfortunately experienced what Malcolm Gladwell called, “relative deprivation — we make our self-assessments based on our immediate surroundings. So when you’re not part of the group that’s the best around you, you’re unhappy and feel like you can’t compete, so it dramatically increases the risk of dropout and failure.” Let me make this straight, I am not as risk of dropout, and I might even graduate earlier, however admittely being at an elite institution in the science when you are not in the top of your game (gpa or research wise..) it can hurt. No one ever talks about this. The feeling of inadequacy. It is real. But I found using my social and intellectual capital and network as support - kept me at bay.

13. I have learned (perhaps due to number 12) to be more humble and try my best even when I may not be motivated. Sophomore year for me was quite reflective. It was the year in which I wanted to “show my goals” rather than tell my goals.

14. To enjoy my Sunday ritual. Which consisted of: Eating my favorite omelet, doing my readings for the week ahead, making my weekly do-to list, cleaning my room, doing laundry and watching “Real Housewives” with my roommate! It is the little effective habits that makes the difference.

15. Upper division courses taught me critical thinking, and my freshman intro classes taught me the rules.

16. I am being much more assertive. Although I am still very polite and cautious (cue my immigrant parents who instilled such values), I have now been able to say “no” more often, and explain my priorities with ease.

17. Social scientists have described two entities known as treatment effects and selection effects. Treatment effects simplified says one builds character while in this institution and a selection-effect institution is because one already possess “valuable traits” that they are accepted to such institutions. College can feel like both.

18. Speaking of treatment effect, sophomore year has forced me to think about concepts in which repetition of facts is not enough, it has force me to have deep thought concerning my abilities and calculating where I am a and where I want to be, lastly I have been encourage be a bit more of social butterfly. I met so many awesome people though others.

19. I learned that pre med is grit. Since I have only two lab courses left to graduate, I will be taking my MCAT in september :\ It is nerve racking, and it is also yet another means of comparison. Along with gpa, and internships, mcat is the holy gail of medical school admissions. But I have learned to respect the mcat, respect the privilege I have as a college student to learn all the pre-req sciences and embark on AMAZING internships every semester since freshman year. I will study hard, and understand that while my worth is not measured by the exam, my ability to work under-pressure, think critically as well as adapting to different disciplines is measured. I want to swim to the finish line with dignity.

20. I learned that despite applying for study aboard as a sophomore I was accepted! I am going to Costa Rica this summer! I will not be blogging after May 24th but before then I have lots of posts. I am doing so much as a sophomore.


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Application nation: Sit down and clear your mind

This post for my juniors, sophomores, and  freshman readers, this post is for any reader who wants to further their education. Take the big leap.

I want to start my Application Series, with a realistic goal and advice in mind. Please take this time to get a pen, paper, and perhaps some time. I think you will need it.

- Take some time no matter how long it may be, to map out what you want. I am avid watcher of the show “Scandal” and I always admired the seamless organization and the ability to make the client feel content. I want you to come out of this process feeling content. You do not have to get into your top choice, you do not have to smile all the time, it is ok to cry and get messy, it is just by the end of it all, your head should be held high and you will promise to yourself to take responsibility.

- Ask yourself: 

What do I want? What would my dream school include? What are my academic priorities - what my college have to make me succeed? 

How do I learn?

What are my strengths? and how can I use these strengths on a college campus? How can I make an impact at an institution foreign to me?

- Understand your ability to respond. 

After answering the previous questions, look at your words.

Write a contract. 

What are your deal breakers? What would like included in this journey? What do you expect of yourself? How long do you plan to study? How much will you depend on your parents/family/friends? What will be your interview pitch points. What is story? Why should you get an acceptance letter?


Take your time to do this. This contract will lay the frame work for conversations with your parents, questions you will ask admission officers and even your guidance counselor. 

4c natural Kylie Jenner | GRWM

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Study Aboard tips: Packing, Snacking, and Culture

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GRWM | Hospital Rounds

Follow my little beauty regimen, as I make my way to the hospital for some clinical hours! Please subscribe on my channel I explore general study tips, beauty tips, rant/ social commentary, natural hair and vlogs. Please share, subscribe and comment:)

Young woman of color, smart and quirky youtube channel.

Study Aboard tips: Packing, Snacking, and Culture

Youtube the pros and cons