I'm on my second semeter in associate program, and i've learned alot...lol
here's my tip:
1. Always study/read ahead:
Eventhough i know i should read ahead (let say a week ahead) i always didn't end up reading the chapters...
i find that just looking at how much i need to read, i get bored and lazy! the least number of chapters i have to read was 4..... so don't be like me...lol read ahead! so u will know what topics the prof. will discuss on lecture, also, while ur reading, it might be necessary to highlight important stuff, or make ur own notes about it...just follow ur chapter's objective then u will know what to focus on. In my school, we were give handouts every lecture, or she will send it a week early in our e-mail so we could study in advance, so what i would do is look through the handouts and then read the book corresponding to that lecture then u will know what to highlight on ur book or what to make notes on while ur reading.
2. Answer practice questions: right after u read a chapter, answer the practice questions from ur book! it's a great exercise
if u don't know why u got an answer wrong (even after reading the rationale) u can always ask ur professor for more detailed explanations when u get to school, that's why it's better to always read prior to attending class, so u will know what to ask.
3. Record ur lecture:
since the first sem, i have always recorded every lecture, but my problem is i fail to listen to it when i get home...lol (as i've said i tend to get lazy coz lecture usually takes 4 hours) but my advice is to listen to ur recorder on ur way home, then continue listening to it when u get home, try to do it as soon as ur home, or else u'll end up like me pilling up recorded lectures from the previous week... >.< i read that listening to ur recorder within 24 hrs after the lecture actually helps u to remmeber it more....so try to do that
4. Practice all the skills u learned from lab: it's really helpful in clinicals so u don't seem lost when ur there...
5. Make flashcards (optional): make flashcards of all the disease process u learned from ur lecture, coz that's what u mostly see in ur exams.
6. Make use of a planner: i use a weekly planner so i know what i should do on each day. like a "to do" list, and the most important thing about having a "to do" list is to stick with it! and make sure u get it done! lol coz that's what i need to work on, i make a "to do" list but then i only end up doing 1 or 2 out of everything i've written... so make sure it's realistic too
7. Use all the resources available: practice exams from ur book, online practice exams/reviews provided by ur school, CD's from ur book, etc
i'm trying to apply all these things to myself, its just that sometimes i find it hard to stay motivated since there's so much stuff to read and do that i don't even want to start it
so hopefully u'll do better than me! stay motivated and don't get lazy! remember to not put up things that u can do today for tomorrow! and always have a positive attitude, even if u think u didn't do well on the exam, or u got a low grade, just think of it as a learning experience, atleast now u know what u need to work on and u can only improve in the future!
i wish u luck, u can do it!