Student Insight: Hiroe Serves a ‘Big Picture Sandwich’

Hiroe Hu is a student in Touro University California’s College of Osteopathic Medicine

“Know the big picture.” Despite its simplicity, this was one of the best pieces of advice that I ever received in medical school (thank you, Dr. Lin!). Over the past year, this has become my mantra that served me well in both my academic and personal life.

My study strategy almost always involves the “big picture sandwich.” First, I listen to lecture or watch YouTube videos to grasp the summary of the material. My second pass would be a more in-depth look into the materials: reading the slides, referencing textbooks, memorizing facts, and taking notes to put the knowledge into my own words.

Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , ,

Doctor finds a reminder of the humanity at the heart of medicine

Jean Robey MDThis moving story by Arizona Dr. Jean Robey is a delicate, well-written exploration of a patient’s decision to allow himself to pass away.

“Hello? Hello, Mr. Bertsie. It’s Dr. Robey. I wanted to call you and check on you,” I said into the phone stopping my constant wrestling with papers and resting what was in my hands on my lap. Mr. Bertsie and I were meeting in the equinox.

“Oh, hello Doctor,” he said with a little relief, a little surprise, a little delight in his voice. “I’m doing OK. I walked the dog today.”

“Mr. Bertsie. Did everything go ok yesterday?” I pressed.

“Oh yes. They were all very nice and got me right in. I am glad to be done with it,” he confessed.

To read on, click here.

A year in the life of a med student (with tunes)

Med student Danielle Saenz made a wonderfully joyful video by using a second or two recorded during each day of her grueling fourth year, set to upbeat music. The good news is that it looks like she found lots of opportunities to live life in between epic bouts of work and study.

[This Is How You Eat A Buick from Danielle Saenz on Vimeo.]

Continue reading

Tagged , , , , ,

Dear Dr. J: You Can Catch Up!

Dr. J is Touro California Director of Academic Support Dr. Jill Alban.

Dear Dr. J,

I am already getting behind and I’m worried I’ll never catch up! What do you recommend?

— Behind the Wheel on Mare Island

catch-upDear Behind,

Use your week-ends to catch up and get ahead. You have 48 hours. Even if you give yourself 9 hours of sleep, 2 hours of exercise and time for breaks, you’ll have plenty of time to catch up. The most important thing is to create a study plan. Research on study strategies has demonstrated that good students create a study plan and stick to it. Once you’ve made your schedule-set it in stone. Make a commitment to follow it.

Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Entertaining TED Talk on Procrastination

4d10247c2b89098e6f7103065276923e9432e914_2880x1620Blogger Tim Urban wrote so many smart and lively posts about procrastination, they gave him a TED talk on the topic! 

For more, you can visit Urban’s own blog. Here at, we also have our own series of posts on procrastination exploring the problem and possible cures:

Continue reading

Tagged , , ,

Dear Dr. J: Time and Money Anxieties

Dr. J is Touro California Director of Academic Support Dr. Jill Alban.

Dear Dr. J,busTop_5_Money_Fears_a_And_How_to_Tackle_Thema_t580

I’m having trouble sleeping because I’m having issues with financial aid. Is there someone I can go to talk to about that?

— Sleepless in Solano

Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , ,

Student Insights: Christina’s Successful Experience with Free Speed Reading Tool

No sooner did we post an item about a free speed reading tool than we found out the program had helped a current Touro student!

Christina Choy is a first-year student in the College of Pharmacy, class of 2020.


Legentas was very helpful at introducing me to speed reading. I had always thought that I read quite quickly, however after starting the program I realized that I was reading inefficiently.

This program offers various eye gymnastics exercises and trains you to increase your visual span, as well as read in a rhythm that allows for better retention. Before I started Legentas, I was reading 204 words per minute. By lesson three, I was reading at 334 words per minute!

Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , ,

12 Tips for Thriving in Grad School

“Grad school also is a unique experience,” notes Carol Williams-Nickelson, Ph.D, former associate executive director of the American Psychological Association of Graduate Students in the helpful article “12 Tips for Surviving and Thriving in Grad School.”

It’s unlike college, where classes are of chief importance, cramming the night before leads to decent grades and there’s plenty of time for play and extracurricular activities. Being a graduate student is a full-time job that requires you to sharpen a variety of skills — and learn some new ones.

Continue reading

Speed Reading Is Potent Skill for Grad School

karate-school-speed-readingIt has been recommended to the College of Pharmacy students that they take a speed reading course before school begins. This recommendation may be helpful to all professional and graduate students. In the next two years you will  have a mountain of reading. One way of managing your assignments may be to speed read. This is a link to a free speed-reading program called Legentas:


Tagged , , , , , ,

J&J: I’m nervous! How can I get a good start in grad school?

7-Effective-Techniques-To-Overcome-Your-NervousnessJ&J are Touro California Director of Academic Support Dr. Jill Alban, Ed.D. and Learning Specialist Jennifer Pimentel, MAEd.  

Dear J&J,

School is starting just around the corner! I just received my orientation information and it’s starting to get overwhelming. Although I am excited for classes to start, I don’t know if the techniques that I used in undergrad and post–grad are good enough. Do you have any suggestions for me, or what services does campus provide?

— Nervous in the North Bay

Congratulations and welcome to Touro! We’re so excited for you to join our campus and look forward to welcoming you during the campus-wide orientation on July 29. In reading through this blog you will find tips and techniques that will allow you to be successful here at Touro.

Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,