Saturday, August 12, 2006

FAQ #4: What Is Your Typical Summer Schedule Like?

This schedule will only cover the basic/translational research first block, since our schedule is going to change in October once we start the organ blocks. Here is the general schedule by day for the first block:

Monday:
8AM-10 AM: PSS
10AM-5PM: work in the lab
5PM onward: study, hang out with friends, etc.

Tuesday:
8AM-10AM: Seminar
10AM-5PM: work in the lab
5PM onward: study, hang out with friends, etc.

Wednesday:
Same as Monday

Thursday:
No classes, so the day is spent in lab and studying.

Friday:
8AM-10AM: PSS
10:30AM-12PM: Journal Club
12PM-5PM: work in the lab

Weekends:
No classes, so we have time to study, go out, etc.

As far as how much studying we do, that definitely varies quite a bit. Some students came in knowing more than others (I already told you we have two PhDs in the class!), and some students naturally just work harder or pick things up faster than others. We typically have about 20 pages of reading to do per PSS. So I would say that for me, I probably spend a few hours studying for each PSS, maybe one or two hours studying for a seminar (they usually have assigned reading too, but not as much as the PSSs do), and a couple of hours preparing for a journal club. That is assuming, of course, that you are not the person presenting; the journal club director has told us that we can expect to spend 15 hours preparing for our own presentations. The general consensus of those who have already presented though is that it's probably a lot more time than that. I've heard a few people say that it took them close to double that amount of time.

4 comments:

Who M.D. said...

I assume that on Thursday you're in the lab 9–5ish?

Thanks for answering the question!

- Mustafa Hirji

CCLCM Student said...

Yeah, that's pretty much the schedule. Last week I stayed later, which is a bad idea if you haven't done your Friday reading yet....

Anonymous said...

I noticed you spent a lot of time in lab on this summer schedule. Is that the norm? What about for people who have little/no interest in actually being involved in lab research and are instead more social science oriented?

CCLCM Student said...

During the first summer, every CCLCM student does a basic science or translational research lab rotation, even if their ultimate interest isn't basic science. (I'm more interested in clinical research myself.) It's meant to give us a taste of what it's like to work in a basic science lab. This was my first time ever doing Western blots and that kind of thing. It wasn't the most fun I've ever had in my entire life, but it wasn't horrible either. And it's only for ten weeks. After we finish the rotation, we don't have to do any more basic science research if we don't want to. I haven't been doing any. Some of my classmates are still working in their summer labs even now though.