Is it the understanding that is important? (Day 502)

Today’s Diary Entry is sponsored by Pets Bureau

So I’ve been busy studying my protozoan parasites up, I actually booked my final attempt at this exam for Thursday afternoon at 1pm so now the make it or break it pressure is really setting in. Today I wanted to talk a little bit about what I believe are the two different types of learners in the world, those that learn by rote, and those that learn by understanding.

Now as it is easier to talk about rote I’ll start here, this is the type of learning where you blindly remember lists of things, answers to questions, or flow-charts or pictures. Its amazing for written exams as you can literally just write down word for word what you have memorised…

Sadly, my brain does not work like that, I find it annoying, I find it pretty useless actually as its meaningless information so it goes in and out in a single movement. Like for example in nutrition, I was presented with a table of pH’s for the horses digestive system – I can’t remember anything. Yet a few weeks back I was discussing colic with a Dr, and the conversation turned to nasogastric tube (a tube in a horses nose to its stomach) talking about the different colors, and testing the pH with litmus paper to tell where it came from. I remember that, it all suddenly made sense  If its highly acidic then it is coming from the stomach, where if it is more neutral/alkaline then it is coming from the small intestine.

Sometimes it is this that makes the difference, and this is where I think I failed with parasitology. I tried to learn it by rote as it made very little sense to me. This time I’ve gone back to basics, which has been very interesting as Google failed to find me much on schizogony, sporogony or gamogony. Understand these have turned useless lists or drawings of life cycles into stories, they’ve taken a list and made it into just 3 items – and then some differences within these items.

So with a little understanding I am no longer so lost, I am still nervous (it is my final attempt after all with my entire future in vet school riding on it) however I am extremely optimistic. Time to study some more!

On a final note, it appears winter is finally here, Saturday was so cold that I could not risk taking my gloves off to take photos when it was completely frozen (was -9 with wind chill taking it to around -24). Here’s a slight warmer (aka less windy) day…

When Slovakia Freezes

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One thought on “Is it the understanding that is important? (Day 502)

  1. I definitely struggle with memorizing list etc. Parasitology, bacteriology, virology…. Those were all huge struggles for me (and I had to rewrite exams more than once).
    I learn through experience, which is great once you’re in the real world…. But often a big challenge in school.

    Best if luck on your exam!!

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