BIOL235 prereq for second-entry programs

  1. I'm trying to get into Ottawa U's second entry nursing program, and I'm taking BIOL235 from Athabasca to fulfill one of the prereqs. I'm facing midterm 2 and I'm feeling pretty demoralized - I studied for hours and hours and hours for midterm 1 and only got a 78, which isn't bad - but for all the effort I put in, I was a little bit discouraged, and the material for the second exam seems far more intense. My strategy has been this: Write notes using the study guide while doing the chapter readings (extremely time-consuming, but I usually finish two chapter summaries per week), do the end of chapter quizzes when I have some spare time, try to review my notes once every couple of weeks, and start studying my notes like a madwoman and doing the online orion quizzes around two weeks before the upcoming exam.
    I think I spend way too much time writing chapter summaries, so I'm going to try to copy/paste the information under the study guide headers and just edit/reword the info a little bit instead of looking at my textbook and trying to write all the relevant info from scratch. Does anybody have any other efficient strategies I can try to incorporate? One of the problems I feel I'm having is that I try so hard to memorize everything in my notes that I just end up getting overwhelmed by the sheer amount of material and very quickly become incapable of absorbing any more information in a study session. I also get so caught up in the small details that I sometimes miss the forest for the trees. Obviously it's impossible to retain everything in my notes (60 muscles and their main actions + place of origin and insertion for many of them, and the endocrine glands, their histology, locations and all of their hormones? Am I the only one who is totally incapable of memorizing all of that stuff?), but without actual lectures to refer to, I'm unsure how to prioritize what I should be trying hardest to get out of my notes. I'm trying to complete the course in a condensed timeframe, so that probably isn't helping me either. I know there are plenty of people who do well in this course without being on the verge of a nervous breakdown, so the problem must be on my end. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
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    About LiviaLesbia

    Joined: Dec '15; Posts: 10; Likes: 1


  3. by   hopefulgal
    Hi there! I'm working through BIOL 235 right now as well. I assume you've finished by now. How did it end up going for you? As I read through your post, I 100% agree with everything you've written, and I'm feeling pretty anxious about the course. Any tips or advice?

  4. by   LiviaLesbia

    I ended up getting an 84%, but I was doing it in an EXTREMELY condensed timeframe (by the final exam, there was still an entire chapter I hadn't read - yikes), so if you have more time to spare, you'll do better than that (and if you're unhappy with the grade of an exam, you always have the option to retake it).

    Tips that helped me:
    Follow the study guide religiously. If it's not in there, don't pay attention to it. I copy pasted the information from the book into the study guide under the proper headers, edited it to be concise, and used that to study. Do the end of chapter quizzes and the online quizzes when you finish a chapter, and then review your study guide once a week (something I aimed to do, but didn't always get to).

    Something that helped me immensely was watching online lectures about the subject material before reading the book. There are tons of full lectures on youtube. It really made everything a lot easier to remember and helped me cut down my study time quite a bit.

    Anatomy Arcade helped me memorize a lot of anatomy, especially the muscles: Anatomy Arcade - Games

    ALWAYS do the assignments and quizzes before you do the exam. I was disorganized and rushed and didn't do this for the first exam, and only got a 78%. That grade was a lot higher on the second exam, partly because I had developed a more efficient way of studying, but also because I made absolutely sure to finish the quiz and assignment first.

    Lastly, the assignments are an excellent way to boost your grade. If you put in the effort, you can easily get 90%+ on them.

    Good luck!