By this time a year ago today, I was doing my large animal rotation and surviving the rollercoaster of being a senior vet student. I didn’t know a lot about large animals but I did my best. I can say that my last year of vet school brought with it a lot of excitement but also new challenges. Today, I want to share with you four tips to help you survive your clinical year of vet school.
#1 Start studying for NAVLE early and be organized
It doesn’t matter if you are doing Vetprep or Zuku Review or both. You must learn in an organized way that works for you and stick to it. I recommend following the study calendar and creating a checklist of the TOP 20 diseases for the four major species, zoonotic diseases, and math calculations.
#2 Review your clinical cases and write everything down
Write down the most important things about your case in a small notebook. You should include the signalment, owner’s complaint, diagnostic test, differential diagnostics, and treatments. Go over those notes during your breaks and try to remember why you chose that treatment or diagnostic tool.
#3 Limit your social media time and be more efficient
If you are spending more than one hour on social media applications, you should try to mute notifications or turn off the internet connection on your phone while studying. You can also use an application, like Forest, that will help increase focus and block distractions.
#4 BELIEVE in the doctor you are becoming and set new goals
Use daily affirmations to keep yourself focus and motivated during those stressful times. Try to set and work on new short-term goals such as a summer job/externship, internship, conferences, or extracurricular educational courses. All of these goals will boost your mood and confidence when you feel exhausted.