Archive for tag: midterms


Midterm week(s) is the time of the trimester devoid of reflection. Midterms is the time to hunker down, rehash covered concepts, make sure the latest lectures are covered, and the first round of papers have been completed and turned in either electronically or as hard copies. 

This past week or so has consisted of a combination of study, online quizzes, classroom quizzes, papers and now...midterms! That being said, this week's entry will be a bit abbreviated as I have just finished a paper on the style of practice I plan to exercise with my patients, and whether that style is informative, collaborative, deliberative, or paternalistic. Once I have turned that paper in electronically (very convenient), I will complete my "mop up" studying for a dermatology midterm tomorrow.

I define mop up studying as covering the concepts that I don't have a firm grasp upon as an exam approaches. While I study for exams, as I feel I have mastered a topic or concept, I move away from that concept and take on another topic. While I review as exam day approaches, I take the concepts that I'm not as comfortable with and spend a bit more time with them to help reinforce any "weak spots" in my learning for that exam. Takes a little more preparation ahead of time, yet I can spread out my study and not feel as compelled to cram for exams.

Once I complete the final study for Dermatology, I will move to Advanced Botanical Prescribing and study the botanicals suited for the respiratory tract in preparation for that midterm later this week. This is a busy time over the next couple of weeks and at the same time, whether from three years of practice at this point, the joining of the concepts and improvement in efficiency, or pure enjoyment of my classes, studying just doesn't seem like the chore it was back in the fall of 2010. The light is at the end of the tunnel, and I'm pretty sure it's not a train.

2013-02-27_rootveggieguyUntil next week, I'll leave you with a handy and easy recipe for making a nice root veggie side dish for the week. This dish provides plenty of carotenoids, minerals and fiber! Root Veggie Guy gives it the thumbs up!

Roasted Root Veggies 


  • 3 Organic Parsnips
  • 3 Organic Carrots (Large)
  • 1 Large Organic Beet


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Slice the Parsnips and Carrots (1/8 inch thick).
  • Dice the Beet (1/4 cubes).
  • Add to a large cooking sheet or casserole dish.
  • Cook for 60 minutes, turning every 15 minutes.

Makes about 5 servings (enough for lunch Mon-Fri).


Midterms are FINALLY over! Talk about a roller coaster week! The euphoria of earning an A on one exam, followed on the same day by discovering a "less than stellar" grade in another class, immediately prior to entering a midterm for Psychopathology class...of all things! When considering how appropriate entering a midterm dealing with psychological pathologies is compared to any other exam that could have been scheduled at that time, at that place, in the wake of the experiences of the day, the only thing I could do was laugh (not during the test of course). 

This past week has truly been a blur. When sitting to review tests with my instructors, I had some difficulty remembering specific content or details around large concepts. This is the first time I have experienced this feeling since second trimester (the Terrible Triad trimester of Neuroanatomy, Neurophysiology along with Head and Neck Anatomy...alliteration unintentional here). I'm starting to think that the notion of taking 28 credit hours while planning the Gathering involved a bit of masochism in my planning objectives for this term. :)


Well, my mighty Carolina Panthers came to Chicago this week and ALMOST pulled off the victory from the hometown Chicago Bears. I did my share of talking up my team in the week prior to the game, though tempered a bit as the Bears are looking great this year. My good natured classmates, who are true fans and have great respect for a good contest, didn't give me a hard time at all even though we lost in the waning minutes of the game. Here's to my classmates and all the fans of the Chicago Bears! Good people all! We'll get you next year, though! :)

Gathering Update 

I'm very happy to report that the administration of NUHS opened all resources necessary on campus to ensure that the Naturopathic Gathering is a complete success for our university! While I am not surprised at all regarding the support of the administration, the entire Gathering Team and I have been thrilled at the cooperation and support from our school. This is teamwork among colleagues, trust in the student leaders of the conference, and good will built within the naturopathic community from the original (and newest) naturopathic medical school.


I'll close this week with best wishes for our colleagues, their families, friends and everyone impacted by the path of Hurricane Sandy this week. May the first responders safely care for those in the wake of the storm and may those who are watching over others be safe in their duties as well. Everyone hunker down, stay safe, and keep thoughts and prayers strong for this storm to be over quickly and with as little damage to lives and property as possible.

Midterms II - The Creepy Knock on the Door that Won't Stop

Well, last week's midterms are done and I survived, if you call living on about 5 hours sleep per night and coffee throughout the day as "survival"! :) That was just about the toughest week of exams I can remember! Not so much because of multiple exams in one day or that any one subject was the 'killer' class. These exams just seemed to march relentlessly in order (think White Stripes' Seven Nation Army music video). Sample thoughts for the week…Monday, exam…whew! Wait, I have another on Tuesday, better study; time for coffee. Tuesday, exam again…whew! Crud! Another one tomorrow! What?!?! I forgot about writing that summary for the Practice Management Project; that's due when? Oh! Great! How about another cup o' Joe? Until Friday…what? Who are you? Oh! You're my Endocrinology professor…and we have an exam right now? Awesome! :)…and the slow knock at the door just keeps tapping, tapping, tapping…close with the Twilight Zone theme.

While my description of the exams last week is a bit dramatic, suffice to say that after days on end of little sleep, little exercise and lots of study, a naturopathic medical student's 'Determinants of Health' are a little out of whack!  I suppose I should give a bit of info on the determinants of health. Naturopathic medicine considers the determinants of health the 'basis' for a healthy human being. Our medicine focuses on returning people to that 'basis' for health by first regaining balance amongst the Determinants of Health. These determinants are:

  • Breath (or air)
  • Water (or hydration)
  • Exercise (movement and flexibility)
  • Sleep (no brainer here)
  • Nutrition and Digestion (our diet, ability to absorb nutrients and eliminate waste)
  • Rest, Relaxation, Rejuvenation (or Vitamin R, credit to Dr. Louise Edwards)

The determinants can also be anything a person is 'born with' vs. 'environmental' exposures throughout life. The focus can be as broad or narrow as the naturopathic practitioner deems necessary for each unique case and each unique human being. Other key determinants are genetic, mental/emotional state, education level, work environment, history of illness, access to health care, etc. The list can go on and on. While learning to become a naturopathic doctor, we keep the determinants basic and simple. With each of these basic six categories, a person can be led toward or away from a 'Basis for Health' and a healthy person is our ultimate goal! When we are in practice, we will listen to each patient, take a thorough case study and find the unique combination of determinants to help that person become as healthy as possible.

While medical school has never claimed to be the best thing for a student's 'basis for health', we take measures sometimes in attempt to balance our determinants and keep our basis somewhat stable, even during midterms and finals. My effort to balance' is to print study notes and walk at a nature preserve near NUHS called Hidden Lake Preserve. Taking my 'study walks' helps to maintain a bit of exercise, Vitamin R and fresh air while prepping for exams. I've even done this in freezing temps during the winter!


The preserve has two small lakes, one wooded and the other on open prairie with a small network of paths winding around the lakes. While walking and studying, I have found and returned baby snapping turtles who had lost their way from the water, with blessings to be the 'scourge of the pond for decades to come.' Chipmunks have also stepped up on a stump right beside me as I sat and studied. I don't know how these animals keep finding me; I just enjoy their company quietly (entirely out of character if you know me) and we each go on our way. That is, unless a baby snapper about the size of a silver dollar traipses away from their aquatic home, then I'll usher them back to the water. I have included a pic this week from the footbridge during my walk last Wednesday. This is such a beautiful place, I don't mind sharing as long as you don't tell too many folks!

This week I'm thankful that the 'slow tap, tap, tapping' at the door signaling another midterm is only heralding the arrival of two exams this coming week--an imaging (X-ray) midterm as well as a 'Head to Toe' unsupervised complete physical on a live patient in less than one hour. The physical is filmed and graded based on 'proper sequence' of exams as well as proper procedure, patient instruction and explanation of findings. Come to think of it, I think that tapping is getting…just a little…bit…LOUDER!

See you next week…if I make it! :)


Hi Everyone! 

Not much to report this week except for midterms! Let's see, this week an exam on heart and lung sounds in Physical Diagnosis lab on Monday, midterm for Homeopathy III class on Wednesday, midterm for Pharmacology II class on Thursday, as well as a 40-minute marketing presentation for Practice Management class. Finally on Friday, a midterm in Advanced Lab Diagnostics and Endocrinology class!  A busy, busy week coming up so I haven't had much opportunity to get "out and about" for the past few days.  


I promise I'll have more next week! I want to talk about our Practice Management class a bit more as well as Homeopathy and our Pharmacology courses. Talk about building a toolkit to prepare us for being great doctors in the future!  Well, back to studying. 

Let's see, this week I am thankful that I don't have any more exams, presentations or cases due than I already have! There's the silver lining! Until next week!