Comprehensive Exams

Only four more weeks to go and I can barely believe it! 

With graduation, comes what seems like never-ending tests. I have previously spoken of comprehensive exams that must be taken as an intern increases in clinic rank. Well, the Exit Exam is similar but only for those that are graduating. The exam's purpose, I have heard, is to make sure the graduates are fully competent and will be able to pass the boards tests.

The comprehensive test is an accumulation of questions from various instructors of the program. They often are old test questions so they should be familiar to the student. The exam includes sections of Biomed, Foundations, Points, Differential Diagnosis, and Herbs for those in the herbal program. The comp test usually includes a practical portion, but this portion is excluded for those taking the Exit Exam. After taking the Biomed Board and currently studying for the Herbal Board, I am not worried about taking this exam; it should be a piece of cake. The comp exam does require a pass rate of 70% to continue in the clinical portion of the program. The instructors have chosen the 11th week to take the exam so there is sufficient time to make up the exam for those who need to retake it. The same applies for graduates taking the Exit Exam.


Photo of Dr. CaiAnother project I am working on is a uterine fibroid case study for my Herbal Senior Seminar with Dr. Cai. This class specifically focuses on OB/Gyn topics. This is very important since at least 70% of our patients are females who may have some gynecological complaint. Infertility, painful periods, no period, or menopausal disorders are often seen. I have not had a patient with uterine fibroids so this is a great opportunity to research the topic. 

I will obtain a complete medical history from the patient and then come up with a treatment plan and herbal formula for the particular patient. On the day of class, I will bring the patient in and we will have a grand round-like atmosphere. I will share the case with the classmates and Dr. Cai. Then there is opportunity for any other questions to be asked directly to the patient. After, we will provide treatment to the patient. This type of class format is great because instead of paper cases we can actually talk to the patient, take pulse, and look at their tongue and observe their constitution. Whatever your learning style, I think one will find that the program accommodates all of them.

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