Perhaps captainmudphud can elaborare on this?
Irrelevant might have been too strong of a word. It’s not irrelevant, it’s just frustratingly misguided in its focus.
A good chunk of the preclinical years are necessary to building a strong foundation. The idea is that going through the basic sciences will help us to understand pathology and treatment options, rather than to just memorize. The unfortunate truth is that little if any teaching during medical school actually practices this. Partly it’s because not everyone is good at teaching, but I also feel it’s due to our teachers not having a firm grasp on the basics either. So it’s a lot of the blind leading the blind to just memorize shit.
Also, the typical classroom approach is very much driven by time rather than by concept. Meaning, most professors will just talk for however much time they are allotted rather than taking only as long as it takes to convey key information. This means that students are bombarded with superfluous information that they have little idea how to triage. This concept is the reason why resources such as Pathoma are so widely loved. While a gifted teacher, the most important things that Dr. Satter does are: 1) teach for understanding, and 2) make his lectures content—instead of time—driven His videos run however long it takes to get the points across, whether that’s five minutes or 50.
We’re largely taught by PhDs. I obviously have no axe to grind with PhDs and I love research, but graduate school and medical school have vastly different focuses. So while most of our lectures that are keyed into nuances of a particular field of research would be perfect for a grad student audience, it’s a piss poor lecture for a medical student. And these same professors can’t quite figure out why they get bad reviews year after year.
The biggest problem with this set-up is that it means that clinically relevant concepts are lost amongst all the bullshit basic science. So instead of perfecting how to come up with a ddx that doesn’t include stupid zebra diagnoses or how to create a treatment plan that is both financially feasible and diagnostically sound, we learn about some bro’s favorite signaling pathway that might be targeted by a drug that might possibly be FDA approved in a decade or so.
It’s frustrating once you start on the wards to realize how little useful information you were given during the first two years. Because you then remember all the time you spent learning things that are completely irrelevant to the practical application of medicine.
Hopefully I won’t fall when I step down from my soapbox.
THANK YOU OMG