Preparing for the first semester

July 7, 2012 § 4 Comments

It’s possible that I am equally thankful for the resources available at as I am for Khan Academy (which I stand behind as being the reason I was able to do so well on the entrance exam). Øystein Hovi Rognerud is a doctor in Norway who studied at Semmelweis University. He does an amazing service to both future and current students by providing an extensive information platform covering everything from street smart tips, recommended books, apartment advice, and his personal notes from his studies. He even updates it with current information.

As I wrote in my last blog, I have a tendency towards over-preparing myself for future challenges to avoid the element of surprise, and thus degrade the degree of the challenge. While there are a number of these that I need to weed out, those that can be dealt with much later in the future, budapeststudent is providing me with the “right ones”. There are a lot of things I haven’t considered that I am sure would have made my life more difficult when faced with them after the start of the semester.

Subjects for the First Year

(updated for 2011/2012 school year)

1st year 1st semester (September-January):

    1. Medical Chemistry
    2. Anatomy, Cell, Histology and Embryology I
    3. Basics in Biostatistics
    4. Medical Sociology
    5. First Aid
    6. Physical Education I
    7. Hungarian Medical Terminology I
    8. Medical Terminology (Latin)

1st year 2nd semester (February-July):

    1. Biochemistry, Molecular and Cell Biology I
    2. Anatomy, Cell, Histology and Embryology II
    3. Medical Biophysics
    4. Introduction to Clinical Medicine
    5. Medical Communication
    6. Physical Education II
    7. Hungarian Medical Terminology II
Plus: Compulsory nursing practice during the summer

Course Books

According to budapeststudent, the first year is basically science classes and not pure medicine. The Hungarian system is built on a pre-clinical and clinical structure.

  • Anatomy
  • Histology (anatomy at the microscopic level)
    • Department Manual – has pictures of the slides and good explanations.
    • Textbook
      • Ross: Histology – A Text and Atlas – strongly suggested to have a good histology book, but not necessary if you take good notes and pay attention in class. I’m definitely getting one, especially if it’s strongly suggested. 
  • Embyrology
    • Langman’s Medical Embryology – not one of the two most popular, but budapeststudent’s favorite. I checked out the books using’s “look inside” feature and I liked this one the best. It had pictures of actual cases in addition to colorful diagrams. 
  • Biology
    • Molecular Biology of The Cell A large book that is much more comprehensive than it’s smaller counterpart, The Essential Cell. There is not a big cost difference, so it is better to get the larger one. 
  • Chemistry
    • Zumdahl’s General Chemistry – just to cover general chemistry

What you need in addition to books

  • First year
    • Scalpel – can be purchased at the NET building. The best blade size to get is a 22.
    • Microscope – can also use the ones at the Histology consultations or rent one of the few available from the Dept. of Anatomy (but must be early in the semester). The advantage to having one of your own is that, during the semester, you can borrow slide boxes containing all the slides needed to know for exams. I brought this up to Skjalg and he said we can “talk about it later” 🙂 There are student ones available online for around $120 (735 kroner). If we split the cost, it really isn’t that bad…we could just make some cuts somewhere else to make up for it. I feel like it would be worth the cost.
  • Second year
    • Stethoscope – needed for the third year, but recommended for the second (when you start with EKG and heart sounds in Physiology). Learning the sounds in the second year will better prepare us for the first part of pathophysiology and internal medicine.
  • Third year
    • White coat – there is a dressing room with different sizes if you don’t want to get your own. If you get your own, make sure to keep it clean.

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