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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 2:44 pm
by RichBollini4G
Thank you so much for your advice! This is going to help me a lot this year!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 3:08 pm
by Chem_Mod
Yiyang Jen Wang 4I wrote:Thank you so much for sharing these. I am a 2nd year right now and was so stressed about being a premed student. I felt like I have so much to do, to get prepared but don’t even know how to start. Your advices are so helpful! I should really make a plan for myself.


Don't stress! You have so much time before you need to even think about applying. Just focus on your courses now and doing well in them. The rest will all fall into place when the time comes. You'll be fine. You got this! Good luck!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 8:24 pm
by Leslie Magana 4C
Thanks for the advice!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 8:57 pm
by Jingyao Chen 4H
Thank you so much for sharing this! I have just began this course, and I will make sure to follow your advice. Thank you!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 04, 2019 10:27 pm
by Anvi Brahmbhatt 4A
Thank you so much for sharing your advice on how to excel in this class! I will definitely keep your tips in mind as I navigate through this course!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sat Oct 05, 2019 11:07 pm
by GEOVANNAO_3F
Can’t wait to learn, Ive never had a professor so dedicated in providing their students with so many resources in order to ensure their success. Office hours are a new thing to me but I can’t wait to take advantage of it

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 3:33 pm
by Lauren Tindall
Wow! Thank you so much for your insight. As a currently overwhelmed STEM student, this is very helpful.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:06 pm
by AnayaArnold_3L
Chem_Mod wrote:Hey Chem 14A and 14B Students!

I'm Ashley and I am a UCLA graduate and current NY medical student. Before medical school, I was Dr. Lavelle's UA for 10 quarters, which means I know how to do well and effectively study for this class. I wanted to give you some advice and things I wish I knew when I was in your shoes. If there is only one thing that you should keep from UCLA, save your notes from this course. As many of you premeds already know, the MCAT has a chemistry section. To study for that portion of the MCAT, I read over all of Dr. Lavelle's notes from Chem 14A and Chem 14B. I was not a chemistry major, but I scored in the top 5% for that section just by reviewing his notes. What Dr. Lavelle teaches you in this class will prepare you not only for the MCAT but also for medical school. Many of the topics taught in these next two quarters will reappear again and again, and having heard it all before from Dr. Lavelle makes learning it again that much easier. I cannot stress enough how important it is to study those notes and save them after the course is over. I go to school across the country, but I made sure to take his notes with me to med school. His lectures are so well prepared and cut through all the distracting detail to help everyone focus on clear concepts that assist so much with problem solving.

While this course may seem a little overwhelming at times as this is one of your first university courses, just know that Dr. Lavelle provides you with so many resources. He has Chemistry Community which is 24/7 virtual office hours! Plus, he organizes a huge number of weekly Office Hours and Peer Learning Sessions, in addition to even more Review Sessions before exams. He wants to help you succeed so if you get stuck on a concept or a homework problem, go to one of these sessions and talk to Dr. Lavelle, the TAs, and UAs about it. There are so many opportunities for success. Use them. Ask questions on Chemistry Community 24/7, and in discussion sections, office hours, peer learning sessions, and review sessions. Be proactive. These study skills will help you not just in this class but in the rest of your schooling.

To do well in this class, attend all your lectures and discussion sections and go to as many office hours, peer learning sessions, and review sessions as you can. Even if you don't think you have questions, learn from other students. They might have a question you never thought of. Especially on Chemistry Community. Dr. Lavelle's Chem 14A and 14B are going to be two of the most rewarding classes you will take at UCLA. It might seem tough at times, but by the end of the quarter you will have learned so much and have set a solid foundation for your future courses. You will not have another class whose core topics repeat over and over again. Take advantage of all the resources Dr. Lavelle has put a huge effort into developing for you, including the online Focus Topics which are really helpful. He wants you to do well. No other professor creates, maintains, and provides as many additional resources as he does.

Good luck this quarter! If you guys have any questions, feel free to email me at smileysarquiz@ucla.edu. I was Dr. Lavelle's student in 2012 and his UA from 2013 (when Dr. Lavelle created the UA program for lecture courses at UCLA) to 2017. I know how to help you do well. Even though I'm not a UA anymore, I'm happy to guide you guys.

Ashley Sarquiz
UCLA Class of 2015


Thank you so much!!1

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:55 pm
by Alexis 3F
Thank you so much for this; as a student interested in pre-health, I found this advice very helpful!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:55 pm
by Alexis 3F
Thank you so much for this; as a student interested in pre-health, I found this advice very helpful!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 7:31 pm
by Alexis F 3L
Thank you for sharing your advice! I'm also interested in going to medical school in NY and I have been feeling very overwhelmed, so I really appreciate these tips!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 9:03 pm
by Kaylee Sepulveda 4G
Do you have any advice for professors who are not as accommodating as Lavelle? Did you ever struggle in a specific class because of a lack of resources/support?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 9:33 pm
by Ayush Ray 1I
Thank You so much for posting this. I've been stressing a lot recently, and this really cleared things up for me.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 11:24 pm
by Jaklin Astvatsatryan
Thank you for the advice!! Update us on how Med school is going.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 11:40 pm
by brennayoung
This was very interesting, thank you for sharing!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 07, 2019 11:53 am
by Adelpha Chan 1B
thank you for your advice, encouragement, and tips on how to succeed in this class!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 07, 2019 12:19 pm
by Chem_Mod
Kaylee Sepulveda 3C wrote:Do you have any advice for professors who are not as accommodating as Lavelle? Did you ever struggle in a specific class because of a lack of resources/support?


With other courses, you need to find a way to get your questions answered. It's harder because there isn't a 24/7 forum like Chemistry Community where you can ask questions at any time of day. But if you reach out to the TAs or the professor, I'd say that most of the time they are receptive to meeting if their office hours are conflicting with your class schedule.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 07, 2019 12:20 pm
by Chem_Mod
Jaklin Astvatsatryan 3G wrote:Thank you for the advice!! Update us on how Med school is going.


Check out my other post "Advice from a Medical Student - Part II". I just posted it and it is a two year update regarding clinical rotations and how it's different than lectures the first two years of medical school.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:44 pm
by 505106414
Do you recommend taking chem 17 before chem 14a?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 9:19 am
by Areli C 1L
Wow, this is very helpful. Thank you :)

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:48 am
by Chem_Mod
505106414 wrote:Do you recommend taking chem 17 before chem 14a?


It honestly depends on how strong your background of high school chemistry is. While Dr. Lavelle teaches the basics and then progressively works his way up to more complex concepts, if you are really struggling or you feel like the class is going at too fast a pace for you, then it might be worth taking chem 17 first. It is a good course to use as a refresher before chem 14a but it's up to you and how comfortable you feel with the class right now. Hope this help! Good luck this quarter!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:03 pm
by BSolano_3A
Thank you, for the super helpful and informative information. I appreciate it.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:03 pm
by BSolano_3A
Thank you, for the super helpful and informative information. I appreciate it.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:42 pm
by erica thompson 4I
Thank you for the advice Ashley! How much do you think you specifically reference this information from this class in your work today, and as a medical student?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 6:56 pm
by Chem_Mod
erica thompson 4I wrote:Thank you for the advice Ashley! How much do you think you specifically reference this information from this class in your work today, and as a medical student?


I actually used the majority of what Dr. Lavelle taught in the first year of medical school. I do reference his material from time to time, but during the first year there was a ton of overlap. Particularly now in that I'm doing rotations in the hospital, there is a huge focus on the acid-base section and buffers. Every time someone gets their daily labs drawn, you need to understand that bicarbonate buffer of hemoglobin to determine if there needs to be any changes in their medications. When he starts teaching that section, pay close attention. Dr. Lavelle does a great job incorporating the cell biology portion into that lecture. Just this morning I was asked why there was sodium bicarbonate added into the patients IV fluids, and it was because we needed to alkalize the urine to improve excretion of one of the medications to prevent its harmful side effects. So while there is a lot of overlap between the chem classes and the lecture material the first year, acids and bases, specifically, I use every day.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:43 pm
by ngarcia
Thank you so much for sharing your bits of wisdom with us! I will definitely reach out to you if I come across obstacles this quarter and the next.
While you were at UCLA, did you overlap biology and chemistry? If so, what was that like? Any advice for balancing and keeping up with both?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 9:06 pm
by Chem_Mod
ngarcia wrote:Thank you so much for sharing your bits of wisdom with us! I will definitely reach out to you if I come across obstacles this quarter and the next.
While you were at UCLA, did you overlap biology and chemistry? If so, what was that like? Any advice for balancing and keeping up with both?


I don't think I took an LS class along with a chem class until spring quarter of my first year. I wanted to give myself some time to get adjusted to the fast paced quarter system before I jumped into taking two very tough core science classes. It's going to be difficult, which is why you shouldn't rush into it. I would start out by taking chemistry, a GE class, and maybe an English class or something that is writing-based. When you take a writing course, it is nice because your final is a written paper and not a 3 hour final exam that you need to study for. So by spreading out the courses, your finals week isn't as stressful. You will eventually get to a point where you will be taking two science courses at the same time, but that's when you're in your second year and you've gotten used to the pacing and have found a study technique that works for you. But while you are still adjusting, I'd say take it slow and gradually incorporate a tougher class schedule.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 4:09 pm
by 405398682
Thank you very much! I really got a better idea of how to be a pre-med student!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 8:12 pm
by madeleine_dis1E
Thankyou so much i really needed this advice it really helped.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 10:35 pm
by Nick Lewis 4F
Thank you for the insightful message! As a first year student, I don't really know what I want to do yet. I am a pre-biz Econ major, but I am kind of torn between an Econ route and a pre-med/pre-dent route. I am really enjoying this class so far because chemistry has always interested me. I am definitely going to attend more office hours and peer learning sessions. It is amazing to see how much of an impact he has had on your development!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 10:36 pm
by Kendra Barreras 3E
Thank you so much for the advice!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 17, 2019 11:02 am
by LeAirraBullingor2k
Thank you so much for your advice! Would you recommend taking 14B and 14BL at the same time? or should I save my labs for the summer?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 17, 2019 12:45 pm
by Yailin Romo 4G
Thank you so much for this, I am currently a second year pre med student and am stressed OUT about doing well in classes, becoming involved to get into a good medical school.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 17, 2019 6:06 pm
by Chem_Mod
LeAirraBullingor3k wrote:Thank you so much for your advice! Would you recommend taking 14B and 14BL at the same time? or should I save my labs for the summer?


The chem lab courses are very time consuming. The lab periods itself are long, and then writing pages of handwritten labs take a really long time. It's possible to take it at the same time, just understand that even though it is fewer units than the lecture course, the time commitment is the same if not more. Just be sure to keep that in mind when registering for classes. Also, keep in mind, there's a lot more students going into Chem 14B than there are spaces in 14BL so there's a really good chance it'll fill up before you even get the chance to enroll. So if you can't get it winter quarter, just remember you can always take it in the spring (even if you are taking Chem 14C during that time). When you choose to take the lab courses don't really matter. If you take it in the summer, you won't be dealing with other courses; however, you'll be doing double the amount of labs per week and therefore you don't have as much time to work on each lab report because you have to turn it in before starting your next lab. There's pluses and minuses so just weigh it out and see what you think fits best in your schedule.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:09 pm
by ShreyaKannan1B
Thanks for the advice, because I'm not sure about the pre-med track so it's nice to hear from someone who has been through it.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2019 4:49 pm
by Joanne Kang 3I
Thank you so much for the advice!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 27, 2019 4:42 pm
by ShreyaKannan1B
Thanks for the advice! Any tips for the midterm?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 27, 2019 7:45 pm
by Chem_Mod
ShreyaKannan1B wrote:Thanks for the advice! Any tips for the midterm?


Make sure you understand the concepts behind each calculation problem. You want to be sure that you are understanding why you do each step so when you see a fresh new question on the midterm or final, even though the wording is new, you've seen a similar question on that same topic and can figure out how to answer it. If you get stuck, think about the units of the values given and the units for your final answer. Even if you aren't quite sure which formula to use, you may be able to use this information to determine which numbers need to be multiplied or divided in order to start being able to cancel out the units. And lastly, if you missed any questions on the test given during your discussion section, make sure you go over it so you have a good grasp before walking into the midterm. Hope this helps. Good luck! You got this!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 27, 2019 8:22 pm
by Areli C 1L
Thank you so much! This was quite insightful

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 27, 2019 10:04 pm
by AnayaArnold_3L
Thank you so much!!!!
Chem_Mod wrote:Hey Chem 14A and 14B Students!

I'm Ashley and I am a UCLA graduate and current NY medical student. Before medical school, I was Dr. Lavelle's UA for 10 quarters, which means I know how to do well and effectively study for this class. I wanted to give you some advice and things I wish I knew when I was in your shoes. If there is only one thing that you should keep from UCLA, save your notes from this course. As many of you premeds already know, the MCAT has a chemistry section. To study for that portion of the MCAT, I read over all of Dr. Lavelle's notes from Chem 14A and Chem 14B. I was not a chemistry major, but I scored in the top 5% for that section just by reviewing his notes. What Dr. Lavelle teaches you in this class will prepare you not only for the MCAT but also for medical school. Many of the topics taught in these next two quarters will reappear again and again, and having heard it all before from Dr. Lavelle makes learning it again that much easier. I cannot stress enough how important it is to study those notes and save them after the course is over. I go to school across the country, but I made sure to take his notes with me to med school. His lectures are so well prepared and cut through all the distracting detail to help everyone focus on clear concepts that assist so much with problem solving.

While this course may seem a little overwhelming at times as this is one of your first university courses, just know that Dr. Lavelle provides you with so many resources. He has Chemistry Community which is 24/7 virtual office hours! Plus, he organizes a huge number of weekly Office Hours and Peer Learning Sessions, in addition to even more Review Sessions before exams. He wants to help you succeed so if you get stuck on a concept or a homework problem, go to one of these sessions and talk to Dr. Lavelle, the TAs, and UAs about it. There are so many opportunities for success. Use them. Ask questions on Chemistry Community 24/7, and in discussion sections, office hours, peer learning sessions, and review sessions. Be proactive. These study skills will help you not just in this class but in the rest of your schooling.

To do well in this class, attend all your lectures and discussion sections and go to as many office hours, peer learning sessions, and review sessions as you can. Even if you don't think you have questions, learn from other students. They might have a question you never thought of. Especially on Chemistry Community. Dr. Lavelle's Chem 14A and 14B are going to be two of the most rewarding classes you will take at UCLA. It might seem tough at times, but by the end of the quarter you will have learned so much and have set a solid foundation for your future courses. You will not have another class whose core topics repeat over and over again. Take advantage of all the resources Dr. Lavelle has put a huge effort into developing for you, including the online Focus Topics which are really helpful. He wants you to do well. No other professor creates, maintains, and provides as many additional resources as he does.

Good luck this quarter! If you guys have any questions, feel free to email me at smileysarquiz@ucla.edu. I was Dr. Lavelle's student in 2012 and his UA from 2013 (when Dr. Lavelle created the UA program for lecture courses at UCLA) to 2017. I know how to help you do well. Even though I'm not a UA anymore, I'm happy to guide you guys.

Ashley Sarquiz
UCLA Class of 2015

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:14 pm
by Ben 1B
If you are not enjoying this class or subject but still have dreams of becoming a doctor, what do you do? Do you just go through it and hope it gets better?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:15 pm
by Ben 1B
Is there any way to complete medical school pre-requisites while majoring in business economics? Is this a smart move? What do you recommend for an indecisive individual?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:16 pm
by Ben 1B
Is there a way to go to medical school without the pre-requisites such as chemistry classes and physics classes?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:18 pm
by Ben 1B
Can you take all your medical school pre-requisites online or at a community college? If so, is it any less competitive?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:08 am
by Chem_Mod
Ben 1B wrote:If you are not enjoying this class or subject but still have dreams of becoming a doctor, what do you do? Do you just go through it and hope it gets better?


If it's a course that is a medical pre-requisite then you need to determine if being a doctor is still what you want to be. Medical school with residency is a minimum of 7 years (4 years medical school + 3+ years of residency depending on the program). Medical school is a lot different than what I thought it was going to be. I really loved my undergraduate courses and I still struggled with some topics. They're difficult and some are hard to teach, which makes learning the material difficult. If you aren't enjoying one course for one quarter, take another similar class and see if it is the topic that isn't interesting to you or if it was the method in which it was thought. If you really want to be a doctor, you can make it happen. But it will be a long road if you're forcing yourself into a career you aren't 100% invested in.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:10 am
by Chem_Mod
Ben 1B wrote:Is there any way to complete medical school pre-requisites while majoring in business economics? Is this a smart move? What do you recommend for an indecisive individual?


If you aren't a pre-med, I find that super cool! You end up becoming such a well-rounded applicant and I know from experience that admission committees do like that. It is definitely something that will not hurt you. You just need to make sure that you finish all the pre-requisites before applying, which may consist of doing a post-Bach where you take additional pre-med requirements. Many many students, including myself, take gap years so you can use that time to finish taking the necessary required classes.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:11 am
by Chem_Mod
Ben 1B wrote:Is there a way to go to medical school without the pre-requisites such as chemistry classes and physics classes?


Unfortunately, you cannot. You need to take these courses because medical school will only build on this material. They don't teach the foundations; they just assume you know it from the courses you took in your undergraduate courses.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:16 am
by Chem_Mod
Ben 1B wrote:Can you take all your medical school pre-requisites online or at a community college? If so, is it any less competitive?


You can take them wherever you would like. I'm not sure if they accept online courses (that you would need to check with specific schools), but they should accept courses taken at a community college. I can't comment on competitiveness because each school looks at it differently. However, we have accepted students who did their pre-requisites at a community college. Everyone has their own unique backstory and it's more than just grades and GPA that go into considering admission for a student to medical school. Good luck to you!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Dec 06, 2019 3:12 am
by bloodorangefield
Med school seems daunting right now but your advice is helping.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sat Dec 07, 2019 2:10 pm
by Chem_Mod
bloodorangefield wrote:Med school seems daunting right now but your advice is helping.


I'm not going to lie to you, med school is definitely a lot. There are some days that are harder than others. But you just take it day by day. You find that group of friends who understands the struggle you are going through. Everyone is really supportive and you get through it. It seems like a lot honestly, but it goes by so fast. Just enjoy your time at UCLA. That too will go by a lot faster than you think. You got this! You're already done with one quarter! Good luck on the final!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 1:56 pm
by Kate Swertfager
Coming into the chemistry 14 series was kinda scary for me, since I’ve never taken chemistry before. But after discovering chemistry community and posts like this, I’m very reassured that even if I struggle with the course it will be worth it in the long run(like when I eventually take the mcat). just wanted to say thank you for sharing and calming my nerves.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 10:21 am
by Caroline Beecher 2H
Thanks so much for the advice! So nice to hear that these courses helped you with your career and path in medicine - and that there are so many helpful resources!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 2:03 pm
by Chem_Mod
Kate Swertfager wrote:Coming into the chemistry 14 series was kinda scary for me, since I’ve never taken chemistry before. But after discovering chemistry community and posts like this, I’m very reassured that even if I struggle with the course it will be worth it in the long run(like when I eventually take the mcat). just wanted to say thank you for sharing and calming my nerves.


I'm really glad you found this reassuring. The Chemistry 14 series is a tough one, but it really prepares you well for what is to come. Good luck this quarter and feel free to keep asking questions. I'm happy to help!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 2:05 pm
by Chem_Mod
Caroline Beecher 2H wrote:Thanks so much for the advice! So nice to hear that these courses helped you with your career and path in medicine - and that there are so many helpful resources!


Take advantage of all the resources Dr. Lavelle offers. You will notice in future courses that there are limited resources compared to this class. Never shy away from asking questions or listening to other people's questions. Those really get you thinking and not only will you learn better but you'll more likely be able to remember it for later recall.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Tue Jan 21, 2020 3:46 pm
by Leonardo Le Merle 1D
Thank you for the advice!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Jan 27, 2020 2:30 pm
by MariaJohn1D
Thank you so much for your words of wisdom!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2020 10:23 pm
by Reina Robles 2B
Thank you so much!!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2020 11:50 pm
by Leyna Dang 2H
Thank you so much! This helped a lot!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sat Mar 14, 2020 5:22 am
by Chem_Mod
Leyna Dang 2H wrote:Thank you so much! This helped a lot!


You're welcome! Feel free to ask questions you may have. I am here to help and provide you with the guidance I wish I had as an undergrad trying to navigate through UCLA. Good luck on your finals!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2020 8:25 pm
by Vanessa Perez
thank you so much for the advice, it is very appreciated. Wish you all of luck in med school.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 7:58 am
by Xinying Wang_3K
Thank you for your advice! it really makes things clear for me.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 9:06 am
by Charlotte Adams 2D
Thank you so much for this information. What other classes/teachers do you think prepared you well for the MCAT and medical school?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 10:11 am
by Mary Gallo 1L
Thank you so much for the advice! Best of luck at med school :)

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 10:14 am
by Aydin Karatas 1A
Thank you so much for this advice! I'll definitely make the prophylactic move to take effective notes in his class. Good luck with medical school!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 10:20 am
by Savannah Torella 1L
This is very helpful thank you for your perspective! I am one who always keep my notes but never end up using them, so it is encouraging to know that these notes helped you with future classes.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 10:28 am
by Kat Stahl 1L
Thank you so much for all of the good advice! I am still deciding if I want to do premed or not just because it is such a big thing to commit to right now. I was wondering what med school you go to in NY. My brother is at Albert Einstein School of Medicine there!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 10:34 am
by Lucy_Balish_1I
Thank you so much for your encouraging advice. I appreciate you taking your time to post this, and now I am even more motivated to take notes during lectures and discussions. Best of luck in Med School!!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 11:01 am
by Winzel Payumo 2K
Thank you so much for sharing this! I decided to take this class because I've heard that Dr. Lavelle's students leave this course well-prepared for things such as the MCAT, and hearing this be verified by his past student here is very reassuring, so once again, thank you!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 11:07 am
by Mahika More 1H
Hi! Thank you for this super helpful advice. I think even if I plan to go to vet school as apposed to med school, all of this information is so important. Thank you for taking the time to post this!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 11:45 am
by Jayasree Peri 3D
Thank you so much for this, wow!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:38 pm
by Adrienne Yuh 2C
This is extremely helpful to me as a premed student! Thank you so much.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 3:24 pm
by Taylor K 2C
Thank you for these words of encouragement! It's great to know that these classes will not only be helpful now, but in the future as well!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 8:10 pm
by Serena Song 1J
Thank you so much for your advice! I'll try to take more notes during lecture from now on!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Tue Oct 06, 2020 8:48 am
by bgiorgi_3A
Thank you so much for giving such helpful tips! I was nervous heading into this course, but with what you say about Dr. Lavelle, I am certain I will be prepared for my future career after completing Chem 14A and B. Quick question... did you also save every practice problem you did outside of lecture notes, or were keeping good lecture notes enough to help you with you MCAT in the future?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Tue Oct 06, 2020 8:55 pm
by Jasmin Kumar 2B
Thank you so much for the advice! It is very helpful!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:09 pm
by Jason Knight - 1D
Thank you for sharing your tips and recommendations! Definitely planning on keeping notes from this class moving forward. It is comforting to hear someone with experience providing insight to new undergraduate students like myself.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Tue Oct 06, 2020 11:33 pm
by Melanie Lin 3B
Thank you so much for the advice! Chemistry has definitely been a concern to study and prepare for the next few years (especially the retention of material for MCAT) and your experience and anecdotes have definitely eased my worries. Since this post is sort of old, I hope you're still doing well and well on your way to being a doctor (or already are)!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Tue Oct 06, 2020 11:41 pm
by Jasmine Ho 2H
Thank you so much! I'll make sure to keep all of this in mind this year; this was incredibly comforting. :)

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2020 1:11 am
by VanessaZhu1K
Thank you so much for the advice! This was very helpful :)

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2020 9:52 am
by Dane_Beasley_1E
Thank you for the advice!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2020 10:03 am
by Megan Sparrow 1G
This may be too late to receive a response, but how do you recommend preparing for medical school during the pandemic? Most internships and volunteer opportunities have been shut down temporarily, so do you know of any online resources or useful things to help prepare that involve social distancing?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2020 12:03 pm
by Jamie Wang 3G
Thank you so much for this! Coming into UCLA is a completely new ballgame and I wasn't sure where to start in terms of premed. This really helped sooth some of my worries!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2020 5:14 pm
by Alex Mele 2E
This is such great advice! I am a first-year pre-med student taking Chem 14A and I think hearing from others who have been in my position is super helpful.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2020 9:52 pm
by Juwon Lim 3N
Thank you for this. As a student looking to go to med school, I will be sure to take good notes and keep them organized so that I can access them later.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 12:30 pm
by Chem_Mod
Vanessa Perez wrote:thank you so much for the advice, it is very appreciated. Wish you all of luck in med school.


Thank you so much! I'm in my last year of medical school now and applying to residency programs this month.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 12:34 pm
by Chem_Mod
Charlotte Adams 2D wrote:Thank you so much for this information. What other classes/teachers do you think prepared you well for the MCAT and medical school?


I cannot speak highly enough for Chem 14A and 14B (at least the ones taught by Dr. Lavelle, not sure how other professors are). But these two courses helped me tremendously on the MCAT. The LS courses are a good foundation for the MCAT, unfortunately they are now named LS7 and when I took it, they were LS1-4 so I don't know which course correlates to what, but the genetics course and the one covering physiology and cell biology was extremely helpful not only for the MCAT but also for the first semester of medical school. Oh and the physics series is sufficient to cover topics covered on the MCAT. Hope this helps! Keep asking me questions if anything else comes up. I'm happy to help :)

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 12:39 pm
by Chem_Mod
Kat Stahl 1L wrote:Thank you so much for all of the good advice! I am still deciding if I want to do premed or not just because it is such a big thing to commit to right now. I was wondering what med school you go to in NY. My brother is at Albert Einstein School of Medicine there!


The best advice I'd give is to keep an open mind. You don't want to be coming into your undergrad thinking only medical school because you will end up passing up great opportunities to see other specialties that you may find extremely interesting. Medical school is tough and you find friends at school to help you get through it. If it's not something you're passionate about, it's going to be a long and difficult four years followed by an even tougher time in residency.

Congrats to your brother! I do not attend Albert Einstein, but since I am on the admissions committee of my school I can't share which NY school I attend, unfortunately. But love where I'm at and couldn't be happier!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 12:41 pm
by Chem_Mod
Winzel Payumo 2K wrote:Thank you so much for sharing this! I decided to take this class because I've heard that Dr. Lavelle's students leave this course well-prepared for things such as the MCAT, and hearing this be verified by his past student here is very reassuring, so once again, thank you!


I'm so happy to hear about what you have heard from this class. Dr. Lavelle is an amazing professor. After taking his class and studying his notes, I did very very well on the chemistry portion of the MCAT. There are tons of review books out there for the MCAT. I didn't even open one regarding chemistry because I felt so prepared from what I learned in Chem 14A and 14B and with the notes I took. Good luck to you this quarter!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 12:43 pm
by Chem_Mod
bgiorgi_3A wrote:Thank you so much for giving such helpful tips! I was nervous heading into this course, but with what you say about Dr. Lavelle, I am certain I will be prepared for my future career after completing Chem 14A and B. Quick question... did you also save every practice problem you did outside of lecture notes, or were keeping good lecture notes enough to help you with you MCAT in the future?


Don't be nervous. It's a tough class and you will have to work hard but it is definitely great preparation for the MCAT. I have a pretty strong chemistry background because I was a UA for 10+ quarters with Dr. Lavelle so for me the lecture notes were all that I needed. It wouldn't be a bad idea to save the practice problems, but if I had to weigh the importance of each, the notes are way more high yield than the practice problems. Hope this helps! Good luck!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 12:45 pm
by Chem_Mod
Melanie Lin 3B wrote:Thank you so much for the advice! Chemistry has definitely been a concern to study and prepare for the next few years (especially the retention of material for MCAT) and your experience and anecdotes have definitely eased my worries. Since this post is sort of old, I hope you're still doing well and well on your way to being a doctor (or already are)!


Thank you so much. I'm in my last year of medical school and applying to residency programs now. I will do my best to make an updated post about fourth year and residency applications. But it's been a great experience so far. I'm still active on Chemistry Community and reading all of your guys' comments and questions so please keep posting. I'm happy to assist in any way :)

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 12:54 pm
by Chem_Mod
Megan Sparrow 1G wrote:This may be too late to receive a response, but how do you recommend preparing for medical school during the pandemic? Most internships and volunteer opportunities have been shut down temporarily, so do you know of any online resources or useful things to help prepare that involve social distancing?


It's not too late Megan. I am very active on Chemistry Community reading all the comments and questions for both of my posts that I wrote. So if you have any additional questions, always ask and I promise you'll get a response (though it may take a couple days).

This pandemic is affecting everyone so the first thing I want to emphasize is to not feel like other people are getting ahead of you and you're somehow behind because you can't do in person volunteering. Admission committees are taking all of this into account too. So don't stress too much about it. I would say to pay attention to the emails that you get from UCLA organizations/clubs/interest groups. They are putting together a lot of virtual activities that you can be a part of. I would say to not worry too much about it during your first year as you are transitioning to a fast paced quarter system and it's really important that you get the pacing down so that you can succeed in this new environment. Grades are very important when applying to medical school, so you want to make sure that you start out strong. And though you may want to be out there and volunteering, just make sure you are staying safe. I'm working now in the hospital and it's scary sometimes. It's what I signed up for so I'm happy to go in and take care of patients but you need to make sure you are in proper safety attire and have sufficient training to know what you're dealing with especially if you are going to a place with covid patients. If you don't feel comfortable, which I'm not sure I would if I was an undergrad, find volunteer things you can do in your community since school is virtual at the moment (for the most part). See what difference you can make at home. You don't need a huge volunteer opportunity. You can do something local. Medical schools would love to see what you have done to give back to your own community.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 1:09 pm
by apples
thank you so much, this was so helpful!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 2:06 pm
by Anna_Mohling_1D
Thank you for posting and sharing this. It is very motivating hearing how important this class and material is not just now, but in the future as well.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 3:01 pm
by Shruti Kulkarni 3G
Thank you for this advice! It is helpful to know the importance of learning and understanding concepts now so as to do better in the future!

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 4:04 pm
by LexyDenaburg_3A
This is such motivating and great advice to hear!!! Thank you so much for posting.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 4:48 pm
by Lily Mohtashami
Thank you so much for your advice. It is really good to know in advice that I should keep my notes from this quarter. How do you recommend studying for tests? Would you recommend doing textbook problems or reading the textbook or rewatching lecture. What do you think is the number one thing we should do to study?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 6:55 pm
by Valerie Tran 2I
I just found this thread thanks to Professor Lavelle's email and I wouldn't have known about it if it wasn't for you guys activating it again so thanks. Ashley's path is basically my ideal path and it's really comforting to see that this class helped so much despite it's difficult. I'll definitely take all this advice to heart. How are you guys planning to study.

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 11:56 pm
by Jeremy Wei 2K
Ashley thank you so much for sharing your experiences and for your advice! Do you have any tips/strategies on how to study that helped you for this class?

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 8:13 am
by Chem_Mod
Lily Mohtashami wrote:Thank you so much for your advice. It is really good to know in advice that I should keep my notes from this quarter. How do you recommend studying for tests? Would you recommend doing textbook problems or reading the textbook or rewatching lecture. What do you think is the number one thing we should do to study?


Not just for this course, but for most courses at UCLA (from my experience), I would say that using the lecture notes and/or rewatching the lectures would be most beneficial. Remember that the person writing the exam is the one who taught the class, not the one who wrote the textbook. So while I believe (it may or may not still be true), there is one direct hw problem on the exam, the majority is coming from concepts covered during lecture. So it is extremely helpful to do the homework; however, it's not as important to get them right as it is to understand the concept behind the hw question and what it is really trying to ask. Hope this helps! :)

Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Posted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 8:16 am
by Chem_Mod
Valerie Tran 2I wrote:I just found this thread thanks to Professor Lavelle's email and I wouldn't have known about it if it wasn't for you guys activating it again so thanks. Ashley's path is basically my ideal path and it's really comforting to see that this class helped so much despite it's difficult. I'll definitely take all this advice to heart. How are you guys planning to study.


Hi Valerie, I'm glad to see this post is helpful to you. To study for this class, make sure you attend/watch all the lectures and take good notes. Then take advantage of his office hours and any additional sessions held by the UAs/TAs. They are all really great. Also, I cannot emphasize enough how great Chemistry Community is. Take advantage of it. There is no other course at UCLA where you will have a "24/7 question-answer forum". It's basically around the clock office hours. So make sure to ask your questions here or even read other people's questions and answers. You will learn a lot from exploring this forum. Good luck this quarter!

Hope this helps,
Ashley Sarquiz