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Studying Studying Advice

  1. Jul 14, 2008 #1
    So I'm beginning college in the Fall. Considering I'm going to be a Biochemistry major, does anyone have any advice as how to survive Gen Bio? I hear it's a big weed out class for the Pre Med kids. I'm also taking Gen Chem and Calc I, both which I feel confident in, since I've studied it by myself and understood the concepts well. The thing that always annoyed me in AP Bio was the fact that there was a lot of material to know, and I never really felt I had a proper system for studying it all (that being said, I did have a good grade in the class, it just wasn't perfect). Any advice as to how much time to donate to the subject and what I should do to prepare for it?

  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 14, 2008 #2
    For General Bio I usually tried to pay attention to the lectures and especially any form of verbal or physical signals that the Prof tried to send. These usual tell you what topics are most important. I scored pretty much an A in my first year General Bio course. I would also say to constantly just keep up on the reading and try to connect all the concepts in Bio classes. That is all Biology is about, connecting concepts and facts together and memorizing lots of the facts.

    I hope you do not mind, but I was wondering what some people thought of being a better major: Biochemistry or Biotechnology? I have noticed that in my school both programs have a similar path until third and fourth year; at which point Biotechnology focuses more on the BIO courses and brings in a lot of the Bioenergetics and Biochemistry related chem courses. While Biochemistry degree brings in more of the general and Biochemistry related courses.

    I was just wondering if doing either would prove to be more valuable in industry style work?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 14, 2008
  4. Jul 15, 2008 #3


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    I wouldn't be too concerned with the "weed out" concept. This is usually propagated by other students - many of whom are looking for an excuse as to why they are not doing well (as opposed to means of improving their performance).

    Everyone has their own way of learning, so it's difficult to simply suggest an approach that will be guaranteed to work. You have to find a balance between study time and extra-cirricular time that works for you.

    You might want to look into forming a small study group as well. I know it helped me to get together with others in my dorm and quiz each other before tests and exams. This helped on several levels:
    - it helped to properly weight the different concepts covered in class,
    - it helped identify areas that I was weak in
    - by explaining concepts (and often arguing over them) I developed a stronger understanding than that which came from simple regurgitation
    - it forced me to keep up with my studies
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