As PAs, we are constantly learning and growing to ensure that we are providing the best possible care for our patients. One effective way to enhance our knowledge and skills is through proactive studying, which involves actively seeking out new information and engaging with it in a meaningful way.
One technique that can be particularly helpful in proactive studying is using questions to guide your learning. Rather than simply reading through materials passively, posing questions can help you engage with the material more deeply and develop a better understanding of the content.
Here are some tips for using questions to study proactively:
- Start with broad, overarching questions. Before diving into the specifics, it can be helpful to start with broad, overarching questions that help you frame the material in a larger context. For example, if you’re studying a new treatment protocol, you might ask yourself: “How does this protocol fit into the larger landscape of treatments for this condition?”
- Break down the material into smaller, more specific questions. Once you have a general understanding of the material, you can start to break it down into smaller, more specific questions. This can help you identify areas where you may need to focus your studying. For example, you might ask yourself: “What are the potential side effects of this medication? How do they compare to other medications in the same class?”
- Use questions to test your knowledge. As you study, be sure to ask yourself questions that test your understanding of the material. This can help you identify areas where you may need to review or seek out additional information. For example, you might ask yourself: “What is the mechanism of action of this medication? How does it differ from other medications in the same class?”
By using questions to guide your studying, you can engage with the material more deeply and develop a more comprehensive understanding of the content. We hope you find these tips helpful in your ongoing pursuit of knowledge and growth as a healthcare provider.
John Bielinski, MS, PAC