Congratulations on your decision to pursue pharmacy as a career choice. You will be playing a critical role in the medical field. One of preparing and dispensing medication to patients.
Pharmacy covers a wide scope. Students must take chemistry, human biology, pharmaceutics, physiology, and pharmacology. Then comes academic research, vocational training and so much more.
Juggling all these modules, life, and, in some instances, work can be a nightmare. There is simply no time to fit in the 2 or 3 hours of study time.
Yet, passing examinations is a prerequisite for any student who hopes to become a pharmacist. If you have been struggling, please read on. We will share with you a study guide containing wonderful tips.
1. Evaluate Your Study Habits
By now it should be pretty clear that there is a lot of material you will need to cover. Last-minute studying may have worked in primary and high school. But, you must dedicate more time and commitment to your pharmacy course.
Start by evaluating your study habits. It is the best way to see what works and what doesn’t. Also, determine how much time you can set aside to study. You may have to let go of some leisure activities if they take up too much time.
It also helps to have a distraction-free environment to study. The library can work, especially if you share your living space with others. Whatever space you choose should be quiet and conducive to studying.
And yes don’t forget to switch off anything that may interfere. So your phone and TV should ideally be off when studying.
Look at it this way. You are not in school forever. You can always resume such activities once you graduate.
2. Utilize the PTCB Practice Test
As a pharmacy student, the internet will be your best friend. Forget about browsing for pleasure or entertainment. There are tons of online resources that can help with studying.
One that stands out is the pharmacy technician practice test. Do you know that only 58% of students manage to pass pharmacy exams? Yes, the course is not easy.
But, lack of preparation is another reason. With the busy life of a student, there is no time to put in the hours towards studying. That is why we love such platforms. You get practice questions on medication, federal requirements, quality assurance, patient safety, and a lot more.
The results will show you areas that you need to improve upon. It also highlights things you need to know and provides the relevant tools to help prepare for finals. And, the best part is that the practice test is free.
There are tons of other online resources available. Take advantage of platforms like Google and YouTube for such.
3. Create a Study Calendar
As we have indicated, the scope of pharmacy is quite wide. The best way to go about starting is to come up with a calendar. Assign sufficient time to those courses that you find especially difficult.
Remember to include any activities outside of coursework into your calendar. That includes extracurricular activities, assignments, projects, and so on. Having a reference point increases efficiency. It also helps you prioritize what you need to do.
Once again you have fantastic tools on the online platform. A good example would be the Google Calendar. It is accessible on any internet-connected device. It also allows for syncing, so that you are always up to date. And, the notifications ensure you never forget important stuff.
4. Organize Your Note Taking
Be conscious about your note-taking system. Be attentive in class and interpret what the lecturer says in your own words. Some people will find it easier to use devices like laptops. For others, handwritten notes work best.
Do everything you can to be an active participant in class. It will make it easier for you to understand and interpret the content.
Don’t forget to engage with the lecturer, if there are areas that you do not understand. It is better to get answers on the spot, than to try to decipher meaning later on your own.
5. A Study Buddy Doesn’t Hurt
When you enroll in a fitness program, you are encouraged to get an accountability partner. It is a fantastic way to motivate. The partner also ensures that you stick to what you are supposed to do to achieve your goals.
We would recommend that you do the same when studying pharmacy. Having a person or people to study with has so many benefits.
There is the motivation aspect. You are less likely to procrastinate or skip studying if you are doing it with others.
There is room for discussion. You can also get help with areas that may be challenging to you. And, you learn to work with others, which is a key component for pharmacists.
But, we go back to our initial point of evaluating your study habits. Study partners or groups may not be for everyone. Some people prefer to work alone, so if this does not apply to work for you don’t worry.
6. All Study and No Play Is a No No
We all grew up with the phrase all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. The same should apply to you as a student. Allocate some time to a little R&R. You cannot go to class, study, and sleep and repeat the process each and every day.
If you do, you will be lucky to end up being as dull as Jack. it can get much worse. Some students ‘lose it’ to the stress and demands of studying. Yes, we are talking about mental breakdowns that have them displaying some serious psychological issues.
Others resort to unsavory behavior like alcohol or drug abuse, to cope. We go back to the point of having a well-thought-out calendar, and sticking to it.
So, leave out some time to do the things you enjoy. It could be an occasional hike, going out with friends, or whatever catches your fancy outside of school work.
Studying pharmacy does not have to be an insurmountable task. Evaluate your study habits and create a study calendar.
Take advantage of online resources like the PTCB study test. Get a study buddy and don’t forget to take off some R&R time.
With proper planning, tools, and time allocation, you will find the course so much easier. Good luck with your career choice.