Friday, April 30, 2010

Composite exam - Part I and II

Part I of the Composite exam tested my ability to apply fundamental concepts and my ability to problem solve.  I think I did pretty good on that part.  That part was 2 hours long.  An hour later I wrote Part II.

Part II of the Composite exam was all case studies.  I'm not really sure how I did on that one.  I felt like I had a lot of opinions and not a lot of confident answers.  That part was 2.5 hours long.

I think my chances of passing the Composite are pretty good.  The exam tested me on very little of what I studied, or wanted to study, yesterday. 

I go to the big shiny new hospital next month and start my clinical rotation.

Two parts

The composite today has two parts.  One is from 9-11AM.  The second part is from 12-1PM.  I'm going to do some last minute studying, of first year material this morning, and then hope for the best.

I was actually thinking about what I should put in my study plan, last night.  That thing could potentially end up being really long and taking a lot of work to get done.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

More thoughts about the composite exam

I finished my last real exam today, so now I'm studying for the composite exam.

I've been studying my ass off for the last 2 years.  As far as I'm concerned, I've spent 2 years studying for the composite.  I only have today left to review some things, before I write the composite.  If I get tested on things that I don't know, it really doesn't matter.  If it mattered, then my mark on the composite exam would show up on my transcript or at least have in an influence on a mark that does show up.

If I fail the exam I have to write up a study plan.  I essentially just have to make a commitment to study!  WTF?  I'm almost a straight A student, I didn't accomplish that by not studying.  There are a couple of people in my class who don't study that much and get great marks.  Unfortunately, I'm not one of them.

Also:  Yipee, I can spell check my posts again!  That feature has been missing for ages.

Here I go again

Once again I have underestimated how much I have to study for today's exam.  I left school at 11PM yesterday and now I'm up at 4AM to do some more studying for my 9AM exam...

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Thoughts about the composite exam

I'm currently studying for my Pulmonary Diagnostics exam, which I write tomorrow. I will be writing the cumulative composite exam on Friday. The exam is supposed to cover what has been taught over the last 2 years of RT school.

I haven't really studied much for the composite exam and these are some of the reasons why:
  • I like sleeping.
  • Trying to cram for an exam that covers 2 years of RT school is just plain stupid and I won’t spend more than a day doing it.
  • I've probably remembered a few things, which I've learned over the last two years, and probably will be tested on some of that.
  • The composite exam is supposed to encourage students to review and reinforce things that they have already learned. I don't need the encouragement to do that and will do that over the next eight months.
  • How I do on the composite will not have anything to do with the marks that show up on my student transcript. If I plan on furthering my education, no one will care how I did on the composite. They will want to see my transcript. I have had no interest in studying less, for courses whose marks will show up on my transcript, so that I can do better on the composite.
  • If I fail the composite, I will just have to write up a study plan that will address the things that I need to brush up on. I probably would have come up with a study plan, on my own anyway, so that I do better in clinical and can pass the registry exam next year. I probably wouldn't have written one up but I sure would have had one in my head.

NRP Certified

I'm now NRP certified.  I woke up in a cold sweat, last night, when I realized that I told the NRP instructor that I was bagging at a rate of 8-12 bpm when I was doing my resuscitation...

I wrote my Ventilators exam this morning.  I write my Pulmonary Diagnostics exam tomorrow.  I write the dreaded composite exam on Friday.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Preparing for next week

Next week is the last week of fourth semester.  I have to write an exam for my third Ventilators course, an exam for my Pulmonary Diagnostics course and the dreaded Composite exam.  On Monday, I also have to redo my NRP competency and my Ventilator competency.  If I blow any of those competencies, I'm screwed.

Last week I wrote my final exams for Pathophysiology and Anesthesia.  I think Anesthesia went very well and Pathophysiology was OK

It now looks like I'll be getting an A for my Simulation course.  I probably have an A+ for Anesthesia.  I'll be happy with a B in Pathophysiology.  I might be able to pull off an A+ for Pulmonary diagnostics but will probably get an A.

I also just bought a shiny new car.  My life sucks a little bit less because of it.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Scrubs too big

I ordered 5 pair of scrubs.  They're way too big and I will have to return them.  I need to wear a different colour, of scrubs, for my clinical rotations and was pretty confident that I had ordered the correct size.

Things haven't been going well

My clinical rotations start in less than three weeks and things haven't been going so well.  So far, I've failed two Ventilator competencies and my NRP (Neonatal Resuscitation Program) practical.  I failed my second Ventilators competency today, with a mark of 25%.   I had a scenario that included a a two day old term baby. I ventilated him as though he was a 30 week gestational age prem.  I also made a major mistake in setting up the pressure that I was using to give the baby his tidal volumes.  I thought I was ventilating with a PIP (Peak Inspiratory Pressure) of 25cmH20 when I was actually ventilating with a PIP of 20cmH2O. I was unwilling to increase the  PIP any higher, so I wasn't able to achieve the target tidal volume that was required.

I'm currently studying for final exams and the cumulative composite exam.  The cumulative composite exam covers 2 years of material. While I'm writing exams, I'll also have to prepare for and redo my NRP certification practical and my second Ventilator competency.  If I don't pass my NRP practical redo and get my NRP certification, I won't be allowed to do my NICU rotation.  If I don't pass my competency redo, I'll fail my Ventilators course.  If I don't those two redos, I won't be allowed to do my clinical rotations.  Now I know how it feels to be on the verge of failing and it really sucks.

I did however get perfect on my PFT (Pulmonary Function Test) competency.  Lots of people didn't do so well on that one.  Apparently the trick to doing that one well, was to watch the patient instead of the computer while getting the patient to do a flow volume loop.

I really hope things turn around, going forward.