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What Can I Expect In My First Year?

What is the first year of medical school really like? Luckily at RowanSOM, our students are willing to share their stories and help you get a better idea of what awaits you!

Meet Jen

Why did you choose PBL?
"I think PBL is a good fit for my learning style, because it allows me to follow my own schedule. I also really like PBL because I’m able to apply what I’m learning to real-life patient cases. So, when we’re learning in classes, we’re going through real-life patient cases and talking about them, discussing them in groups and bouncing ideas off of my peers. And that really allows me to learn for the long-term, because I can relate those ideas back to a real patient."

How do I know if PBL is right for me?
"If someone is deciding between PBL and traditional curriculum, I think it’s really important to consider how you learn best. Neither program is better than the other, it’s all about what’s best for you and your learning style. So, if you’re someone who really likes to learn on your own schedule, and make your way of how you’re going to study and learn, then PBL might be good for you. On the other hand, if you’re someone who likes more of a schedule and to follow a syllabus and be guided by lecture, then traditional is probably best for you."

Do you think there is a benefit to PBL beyond the classroom?
"I think the benefits of choosing PBL over traditional are that you’re able to learn in terms of real-life patient cases, so you’re able to get an idea of what the actual clinical presentation of a patient will look like and how you want to approach a patient. So, in terms of clinical rotations on 3rd and 4th year, you’ll feel more comfortable with asking questions of your patient and ordering tests and making those differential diagnoses, because that’s what we’re actually doing in class."

--Jennifer Abrams, Class of 2020

Meet Nhi

Why did you choose PBL?
"PBL was a good fit for me, because I really like to be in charge of my own learning. I like the self-study component of PBL. Being able to control when I want to study a certain subject or the pace at which I wanted to go and study a certain subject was really appealing to me."

How do I know if PBL is right for me?
"I think PBL works for students who can dictate their own learning schedule. I always say if you can do time maintenance and balance out your time, you can do PBL.

"Before you decide to join PBL, I think shadowing is a great opportunity. I know a lot of students who are prospective students – they’ve shadowed me or other classmates just to see what it’s like, because it sounds fun, but I know it’s not for everyone."

What are the relationships like with the faculty at RowanSOM?
"I feel like prospective students would be most surprised to know how involved the faculty really are. I think that’s probably Rowan’s biggest asset, honestly. That they’re so involved in our lives, and they listen to us and we’re able to go talk to them, almost like they’re colleagues. Yes, I know they’re administrators, but it’s really nice to go to talk to them and come to them with a problem and they’re listening to you, not just as a student, but as a colleague."

--Nhi Tran, Class of 2020

2019/20 Curriculum Schedule


Spring 2019/20 Schedule

These are sample schedules only. Schedules are subject to change.