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Q&a With Mcgill Med Ambassadors

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2 hours ago, Ralph96 said:

Hi guys ! I was just wondering if you had any idea about when the facebook group for the class of 2023 (MDCM) was going to be created ? Thanks in advance ! :D

I'm curious too :D  can't wait!!!

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13 hours ago, Pepperonee said:

Hello!

I am fortunate enough to have been accepted to McGill's MDCM program as a Med1! I just wanted to know whether anyone can share what kind of weekly schedule they had for their first year (first and second semester).

I know the curriculum is posted online, but it's hard to gauge what kind of schedule most students have (i.e wed afternoons off, friday mornings off, lectures monday-tues 9-5pm...etc).

Also, are most lectures recorded? Do students get to dissect cadavers for their anatomy program or do they look at prosected parts?

I am trying to see what a typical week looks life for the first year med students. Thank you for your help!

Congratulations on your admission!

The schedule varies from week to week, and from block to block. Typically, mornings are filled with three 50-minute lectures from 8:35 to 11:25. Busy weeks will have a full load of 15 lectures/week, but on average I'd say you can expect 12-13 lectures a week. Afternoons are usually dedicated to 3-hour-long small groups (10-15 students with a preceptor discussing clinical cases) and histology or anatomy labs (2-3 hours). You usually get about 2 afternoons without anything per week, but this varies a lot. As for the time, I don't remember the last time we ended a day later than 4:30PM.

All lectures are recorded, but rarely there will be technical issues and recordings won't be made. Luckily, in most of those cases, they just upload the recording for the same lecture from previous years, so no biggie.

Finally, yes, anatomy labs revolve around dissections. You will be teamed with 2 or 3 other people and will work on one donor body for the year. It's a great opportunity and definitely a strength in McGill's curriculum if you care about that.

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9 hours ago, MedP111 said:

Congratulations on your admission!

The schedule varies from week to week, and from block to block. Typically, mornings are filled with three 50-minute lectures from 8:35 to 11:25. Busy weeks will have a full load of 15 lectures/week, but on average I'd say you can expect 12-13 lectures a week. Afternoons are usually dedicated to 3-hour-long small groups (10-15 students with a preceptor discussing clinical cases) and histology or anatomy labs (2-3 hours). You usually get about 2 afternoons without anything per week, but this varies a lot. As for the time, I don't remember the last time we ended a day later than 4:30PM.

All lectures are recorded, but rarely there will be technical issues and recordings won't be made. Luckily, in most of those cases, they just upload the recording for the same lecture from previous years, so no biggie.

Finally, yes, anatomy labs revolve around dissections. You will be teamed with 2 or 3 other people and will work on one donor body for the year. It's a great opportunity and definitely a strength in McGill's curriculum if you care about that.

I also heard that each M1 is paired with a mentor physician to do some observations in a clinical setting. If you don't mind, can you tell us a little bit about how it works for the pairing? and how often do you get to meet with your mentor? Thank you :D

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34 minutes ago, Elgar said:

I also heard that each M1 is paired with a mentor physician to do some observations in a clinical setting. If you don't mind, can you tell us a little bit about how it works for the pairing? and how often do you get to meet with your mentor? Thank you :D

There are two types of pairing:

1) LFME - that is based on your location preference/ability to speak French. 

2) Your Osler fellow is a specialist in any domain. This one is done completely randomly and you get to me them during your welcome week and have lunch with them. In your Osler group you will also have third year students who will help guide the meetings. Usually you meet your Osler fellow once a month and he/she helps organize your 4 mandatory patient encounters that you need write reports on. 

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Hi everyone

do you think that extraccuricular activities matters for mcgill admission if done after graduation ? because i work 37 h /week, have a 2 yo child and study 5 course per term so i can't really do these activities and want to focus more on my GPA. any advise ?

Thanks 

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4 hours ago, Bambi said:

Caring for your child does demonstrate CanMED competencies! :P You are caring for another unable to care for him/herself, demonstrating responsibility, compassion, dedication, etc. Include this in your application just as you will with all other ECs.

actually you are right. i will do for sure ! Thanks !

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You are a care giver! For the relatively helpless in the sense that an infant is incapable of looking after oneself. If you provided care for a mentally or physically challenged family member, you would put that on your CV. Well, you are a 24-7 caregiver, and cannot devote time to visiting the aged, or helping make patients in hospital feel more comfortable or doing play therapy with them. You do it with your infant. Use what you have to full advantage. :P And, no doubt, your child is thriving!

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Hi everyone! I'm about to start Med1 in the fall and I currently have 2 jobs (around 15 hrs/week), I was wondering if many people work during medschool, if yes is it manageable? 

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5 hours ago, guest2017 said:

Hi everyone! I'm about to start Med1 in the fall and I currently have 2 jobs (around 15 hrs/week), I was wondering if many people work during medschool, if yes is it manageable? 

Really not many do. The recommendation is that you're better off using your time if not on studies then on other activities that would enhance your CV or wellbeing. Depending on what kind of job you have, consider if it is worth your precious time. Med school can be a lot to handle, and if you find that manageable, you can find ways to make it super fun. If it's due to finances, you shouldn't have to worry about a job

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10 hours ago, guest2017 said:

Hi everyone! I'm about to start Med1 in the fall and I currently have 2 jobs (around 15 hrs/week), I was wondering if many people work during medschool, if yes is it manageable? 

I honestly do believe it is better to dedicated your medical school years to medical school activities. If you do have extra-time, use it to relax, enhance your curriculum or simply spend time with friends and family. It is extremely hard to compare it to undergrad but I think the best way to put it is : every week is comparable to your final exam week. Congratulations on your acceptance and looking forward to meet you! :)

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Hi everyone ! I'm about to begin medical school at McGill this fall and I had some questions about the curriculum : 

First, I saw that it has a research part in it... I would like to know what this is really about... Is it fundamental research in a lab? Do you have to find a researcher and do research at the same time of study for your medical courses?  How do you manage your time, since (in my experience) doing research takes a lot of time and I'm pretty sure medical school takes it too ;) 

Also, I saw in the curriculum a  "lab course" component... Again, is it fundamental labs like we did during our undergraduate?  

And what about the kind of "APP" (apprentissage par problèmes) that all other med schools in Quebec have? Is McGill really only theoretical (except for LFME) during the 1 1/2 year? 

Sorry for all those questions ! I'm did not find a lot of info about the curriculum !

 

 

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1 hour ago, Dr. Un Jour said:

Hi everyone ! I'm about to begin medical school at McGill this fall and I had some questions about the curriculum : 

First, I saw that it has a research part in it... I would like to know what this is really about... Is it fundamental research in a lab? Do you have to find a researcher and do research at the same time of study for your medical courses?  How do you manage your time, since (in my experience) doing research takes a lot of time and I'm pretty sure medical school takes it too ;) 

Also, I saw in the curriculum a  "lab course" component... Again, is it fundamental labs like we did during our undergraduate?  

And what about the kind of "APP" (apprentissage par problèmes) that all other med schools in Quebec have? Is McGill really only theoretical (except for LFME) during the 1 1/2 year? 

Sorry for all those questions ! I'm did not find a lot of info about the curriculum !

 

 

It's more like a research course, where you talk about the process of research, do some paper reviews etc. You're matched to a researcher with a small group of other students, based on interest. You meet 4 times in the first year and 2 times in Med 2, and it's really just a couple hours of commitment since it's not an actual project in a lab.

Not sure what you're referring to for "lab course", but we have histology and anatomy labs as learning environments (not research). 

I'm not familiar with APP but by the name of it it sounds like small group learning, which we do have approximately each afternoon. These are to reinforce theoretical concepts, and some of them are to practice clinical skills/history taking (once per block).

 

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6 hours ago, Pepperonee said:

Hello, I have been accepted into the MDCM Med1 program and I am beyond excited to be starting this Fall. I have a few questions:

1) The French requirement is scaring me a little bit. I don't know any French yet.

- approximately what percentage of the class cannot speak any french and had to learn it throughout the medical program?

- given that McGill now has LFME, how much French do we need to know for the pre-clerk years and how easy is it to pick up?

- how much French do we need to know? is holding a basic conversation enough or do we need to do charting in french as well?

- are the hospitals in which students are placed English-based or French-based? 

2) Is a car necessary?

3) I'm thinking of buying a 1 bedroom condo. Which streets in downtown would you recommend?

 

1) I don't have the stats (not sure if anyone does) but there are plenty of people in the class who don't speak French. Many grew up elsewhere but were born in Montreal so they have in-province status, and a bunch from the west island barely speak any.

For LFME they ask you if you can speak French and try to accommodate. It's not a guarantee, but most staff will be understanding especially as a Med1, and won't give you French patients. Also keep in mind a lot of French-speakers also speak English. For some people LFME also ends up just being shadowing, it really depends on who you're placed with.

You will not need to chart in French ever. If you can have a rudimentary conversation while using Google translate for the words you forget you'll be fine. The only time anyone charts in French is for optional placements like rural family sites, which again if you state you can't read/write in French you won't be sent there.

McGill hospitals are English-based. There are a couple of exceptions for clinics, or OB in Lasalle (only a few students in the class end up placed there), but every other hospital-based rotation is in an English hospital. But yes it's Montreal, so you can expect roughly half of your patients to be French speaking. I won't lie, it's more stressful if you're not comfortable in French, but it's also very doable.

2) No

3) There are no streets I particularly recommend (downtown Montreal isn't dangerous), but keep in mind you'll spend most of your time for 1.5 years at McIntyre on the McGill campus, and after that you'll be at various hospitals. A lot of people in the class moved before Med3 to be close to whichever hospital they spend the most time at, especially for the 4 months of Internal/Surgery which has the toughest hours. Those who lived a long commute away ended up getting an airbnb downtown for their gensurg rotation (gotta be in the hospital ready to round by 6am :(). You won't find that out until spring of Med2 though.

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21 minutes ago, Pepperonee said:

This was very helpful. I have one more question - even though the hospitals are English-based, are the healthcare professionals constantly switching back and forth between English and French with the patients to cater to their preference of communication?

Yes absolutely. Everything I said is for med students. Some staff might not have the most fluent French, but if you're working in Montreal you have to be able to speak French. The hospital being English just means all charting is in English and if you call someone for a consult you'll be speaking in English, but the patients are the patients. You speak whatever language they're most comfortable with as a staff, and as I said if you're working in Montreal you have to be comfortable with both.

When you're in the hospital staff are understanding, and if you didn't catch what they were talking about with the patient because it was in French they'll be happy to clarify afterward. I've encountered some staff in clinics outside the hospital that have been unimpressed with me not being completely fluent in French, but hey some staff are just chronically unimpressed with everyone, you get used to it in clerkship.

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@Pepperonee 

First, congratulations on your admission, it's wonderful news.

1) The French requirement is scaring me a little bit. I don't know any French yet.

McGill has often been criticized in the Province because patients find it unacceptable that they can't be treated in French, during their hospital stays, at a time where they are extremely vulnerable. I think language is a sensitive issue in Quebec, for very obvious historical reasons. No one will criticize you for trying to speak French, for making an effort, for trying to communicate with the patient. Nonetheless, a quarter or so of the class doesn't speak French at all and will be able to successfully completely their training. Some staff can't speak French either. While I do not think it is essential to understanding medical sciences, it is an 'easy' skill to acquire and you will be highly rewarded from speaking French because patients will feel listened and at ease. 

  • Approximately what percentage of the class cannot speak any french and had to learn it throughout the medical program?  

I would say 25%.

  • Given that McGill now has LFME, how much French do we need to know for the pre-clerk years and how easy is it to pick up?

LFME is simply meant to help you get out of your Powerpoint slides and get a touch of real clinical experience. They will try to place you in settings where you will have the most enriching experience. Since you are mostly doing observation, your lack of French mastery shouldn't be an issue.

  • How much French do we need to know?

You need to be able to talk with a patient, using the basic words.

  • is holding a basic conversation enough or do we need to do charting in french as well?

Charting will be done in the language of your choice.

  • Are the hospitals in which students are placed English-based or French-based? 

The hospitals don't have an official language. The patient dictates the language and that's where the language issue comes from.

2) Is a car necessary?

No

3) I'm thinking of buying a 1 bedroom condo. Which streets in downtown would you recommend?

I would recommend renting first and then seeing how you like it and where you will end up for residency.
The McGill campus is surrounded by multi-residential buildings.
Anything close to a metro station is good.

 

Good luck ! :)

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