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Journey of a DPT Student

First Exam Week

Published July 5, 2011 2:18 PM by Lauren Rosso

The first exams of PT school are over. Our first anatomy exam was Monday, followed on Thursday by exercise physiology. By the time it was over, the four-day week felt more like a month. (Thankfully we had Friday off for the 4th of July. Otherwise, I don't know what people would have done). The anatomy exam met my expectations. I have heard so many horror stories about the first gross anatomy practical - how rushed you feel, blanking on questions, origins, insertions, etc.

As overwhelming as it was, surface anatomy was equally stressful but in a very different way. I felt like I was acting in front of an audience, trying to speak the "lingo" of physical therapy that I am so far from mastering. I know I should say "lie prone," but still the first thing that comes to my mind is "lie on your stomach." I felt the same awkwardness while trying to explain supination. More often than not I found myself demonstrating the movement. I guess it's an acceptable alternative; however, I am looking forward to when "prone" and "supination" come out naturally.

After the exam, we all took a much-needed break at a local bar. It was a lot of fun to get to talk to my classmates about something other than anatomy. The worst part was knowing we had another exam a few days later. Exercise physiology caught a lot of us off guard. I guess we had been putting so much weight on anatomy that we kind of forgot about everything else, which was unfortunate because the exam is worth 60 percent of our grades. I think it's our first lesson in time management and being able to keep the bigger picture in mind even when certain areas become overwhelming.

Despite what feels like a constant work rate, I am already behind with anatomy. I was hoping for a long, relaxing weekend for the 4th of July, but it's not in the cards. We have another exam this week and then our second anatomy exam shortly after that. We're officially in the thick of things... scary to think it might not change for two years.


Kim- I'm glad to know I won't sound like a novice forever.  It has to be exciting to be half way done!  Good luck on your practical and final... and get some sleep too!

Lauren Rosso July 6, 2011 4:45 PM

Great to get the first test gitters out of the way.   I'm half way through a PTA program and prone and supination do become part of your language.    

I know PTs have a much tougher go of it and longer but PTA school has been more than challenging and the upcoming practical next week is dominating my life with a written final to follow.

Have fun with it, relax when you can and get some sleep.  :)

Kim Learner July 6, 2011 11:05 AM

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