Vacation study strategies! Over the years, winter break has been one of the most popular times for students to start consistently practicing a daily routine of doing questions. Sticking to a regular review routine during the vacation helps you refresh on materials you've learned this past semester, and/or older content you learned last year. These healthy study habits will carry into the New Year, helping you to cruise right into your coursework, and for second- or third-year medical students, into boards with confidence in your comprehension.
We've compiled some of our highest-performing members' experiences here, focusing on how students have historically hopped into Firecracker over the holidays (each quote links you to an in-depth overview authored by a student who used Firecracker en route to a score >265 on USMLE):
"By focusing on high-yield material and adjusting my review questions according to my strengths and weaknesses, Firecracker allowed me to maintain a strong knowledge base all the way through my M2 year. When the Step study period arrived, reviewing was a breeze since I had been keeping up all along. I never would have scored my 268 without Firecracker!"
"When winter break started, I began using Firecracker in a non-traditional way that I thought worked out very well for me. Instead of using it how it was meant to be used (space time repetition by flagging things), I started reviewing all the cards by organ system by using the "study something specific" tab."
Students in their clinical years also find winter vacation to be prime time for buckling down to review materials and set themselves up for successful Shelf and Step 2 preparation: "During winter break, I spent a few hours a day doing the cards from the Psychiatry and Neurology rotations. I was able to catch up very quickly... Firecracker was excellent for retention of the material."
In the UK, Australia, Canada, Ireland, and South Africa, this time of year is celebrated with Christmas crackers. We hope you'll join us to give the term a whole new meaning! Since we're feeling festive, we're kicking off the season with some stupendous sales, which you can get right here (and feel free to share the love)! Unwrap the cracken!
David J. Guertin, Academic Operations and Community Manager, Firecracker