My Exam Experience

May 28, 2014

Socrates quote: Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.

The more I studied, the more I realised I loved learning.

To be honest, before the exams, I was very worried. I felt unprepared but at the same time, I knew that if I was given as much time as I needed, I probably still feel unprepared.

This was as prepared as I can get.

I was scared because I was afraid that I would fail and failing means that I would have to repeat the year. The thought of repeating the year frustrated me. Doing this all over again felt overwhelming and because of that, I nearly had a meltdown.

However, as the exams came closer, the more I revised, the more I felt like the subject and I clicked.

It’s like a sudden clarity. 
Suddenly, I can see it in a new light. 
Suddenly, it all makes sense now.
I wouldn’t say that I completely understood it but I could see what it was trying to say now.

It’s odd. I spent my entire year learning and constantly revising, only managing to understand parts of this knowledge. But as the exams came closer, all these parts suddenly merged and now, I understood better.

Read the rest of this entry »

Exams and Economics

March 17, 2014

Image showing large to-do list and short done listWell, as the days pass, you realize the exams are only getting closer. That send terrible chills down my back.

I suppose that I have never ever felt so unprepared and overwhelmed before. There just seem to be so much work and never enough time.

Every time I have one good day, I seem to have five other bad days. Overall, it’s not good. I just end up really stressed and the problem is when I am stressed, I get even more demotivated. And so, this is not a good situation for me at all.

I really do want to do well in my year one so that I don’t have to repeat it. I really don’t want to waste anymore time or money.

As much as exams really stresses me out, I do enjoy learning. I do love going to class and simply learning. There is just so much things to digest and a lot of the stuff is really mind blowing.

Read the rest of this entry »

Depressed but still studying

January 8, 2014

LSHTM logoThe last month has been overshadowed for me by the terrible violence ongoing in South Sudan, which was my home for over two years.  There’s not really a good way to explain how it feels speaking on the phone to your friend who is living as an IDP (internationally displaced person) in a UN base, terrified of leaving for fear of his life due to his ethnicity, and you stuck in another country unable to help.

Map of Yida, SudanStudying has been at times a necessary distraction from being hypnotized by the Twitter page marching on with horrific news. Having finally received my books and Stata CD, I have been ploughing ahead, and am now about halfway through the course textbooks for two courses, and a third of the way through the statistics modules for my statistics course, so I feel like I’ve caught up despite my slow start.

Read the rest of this entry »

Distracted by putting theory into practice

December 16, 2013

LSHTM logoI’ve a really good excuse for not writing for over a month. Really good.  I’ve been too busy putting into practice the theory I haven’t even had time to learn yet. I told you all last time that I’d chosen Health Services Management as my specialty stream for my MSc in Public Health.

Well, admittedly to the detriment of my study, I’ve felt for the last month or so that I got thrown into a very long and realistic classroom scenario exercise in health services management, save for the fact that it’s not just exercise but real life.  As I mentioned last time, I got involved with St. Joseph’s Hospice in Rawalpindi, Pakistan a few months back on the premise that I was apparently young enough to help ‘rev up’ the Facebook page.  That benign suggestion was the beginning of one very long rabbit hole, that I admittedly let myself get pulled into.

Read the rest of this entry »

Linking Studying to the Real World

December 11, 2013

LSHTM logoSo it’s one month on and sadly/happily this student has now left South Sudan, after two and a half years living there.  It was a pretty hectic last month, trying to get everything finished before I left, and of course full of a lot of emotions, and goodbye parties. In amongst all that I must admit there was not a lot of time for studying, although now I am safely arrived in Cairo and have my own room to study in, this trend is changing. I had a lot of fun being massively culture-shocked going into a supermarket to buy stationery for studying :). I am trying to be philosophical about the small amount of studying I’ve done recently and hopeful that I can catch up.

'Smoking Kills' book coverOne thing I did read over the past month, however, on a day when the internet wouldn’t allow me access to my textbooks, was the excellent article by Sir Richard Doll which outlines the causal link between smoking and lung cancer.

I found this pretty amazing because, of course, it’s a knowledge I’ve always had, for as long as I can remember. Yet this article really does clearly start from a position of merely having a hypothesis that is then stringently tested, nothing is assumed. As could only be necessary in a former era when this was not necessarily something that all people knew or believed, and a desire to show facts in a purely scientific matter was also paramount. I thought he did so in not only a convincing but also an elegant way, addressing every possible riposte to his conclusions.

Read the rest of this entry »

The big takeaway to fit study into the busiest times

November 12, 2013

Picture of decaf espresso

Just because you’ve given up caffeine, does not mean you have to give up coffee!

A few months ago, I gave up caffeine. My addiction was come by honestly, as I remember nipping espresso from the unguarded cups of grown-ups since I was able to hold a cup.  Now that it’s time to ‘fall back’ in most of America, it occurred to me I have never faced a time change without caffeine to power through. I will save the humorous details of the week for another time and focus on how to get through the busiest time with study, work, and the coming holidays.

The end of daylight savings time marks the beginning of the holiday season, my busiest professional time of year, and a few weeks away from registering for exams.  Instead of gaining an hour of sleep on at least one night I seem to have lost two or more every night this last week. I started to wonder if, perhaps, holding onto my espresso until May, or at least January, might have been a better plan. I am coming to you a bit sleep deprived and without caffeine but quite contemplative and very realistic about getting it all done, and making sure there is time for effective study. Jelly Bean and I put our heads together, assessed our options, and came up with a plan.

Read the rest of this entry »

Inspired by Louisa May Alcott

November 5, 2013

Louisa May Alcott quote: ‘Whatever we can do and do well we have a right to, and I don’t think anyone will deny us.’Do you recognize the butterflies in the stomach that come with realizing exam time will be here sooner than you think? Maybe it is really a cold panic. Instead of feeling like a far off five and a half months away, the month of May, darling buds and all, instead feels more like it is about five weeks away.  Moreover, exam registration time is a mere sixty days or so away.  Glancing between the growing stacks of books on my study desk and the mountain of work on the desk in my home office intensifies the feeling. There is positively no time for procrastination.  Here are some words of wisdom from an author I am reading this week, Louisa May Alcott: ‘Whatever we can do and do well we have a right to, and I don’t think anyone will deny us.’

Read the rest of this entry »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 34,557 other followers

%d bloggers like this: