Faculty/Staff Resources Student Resources
University of Southern California
University of Southern California
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
Twitter Facebook Instagram LinkedIn YouTube
People
People

What I wish I knew before taking the “Foundations” courses: Part 2

Arianna


by Arianna

email · comment >

Classes Life Hacks

Twitter Facebook LinkedIn email

Hello again! Here is the second part of my last blog. I hope this mini-series gives the Entry-Level MA students some study tips for their next exam. In this blog, I will talk about Neuroscience and Creativity, Craft and Activity Analysis!

Foundations: Neuroscience:
Neuroscience was slightly easier than Kinesiology for me because I have a pretty decent background in Psychology and Cognitive Science. However, we did cover a LOT of information in this class. Nonetheless, Dr. Winder is such a lovely professor to be around so I’m sure you will have a great time learning about the nervous system!

  • Tip #1: Make a study guide ASAP.

Eventually, Dr. Winder will post a study guide for each unit. I suggest downloading that study guide and filling it out as you cover the content in class. This will save you a LOT of time when you are studying, and it will help you focus your attention on the important information. But please don’t disregard the information that is not on the study guide. Everything you learn in this class will come up in your life whether it be on the exam, or with a future client. As my Physiology professor once said, “If you don’t want to study for your own benefit, study for the benefit of your future patients”.

  • Tip #2: Watch YouTube videos about each topic.

Some of the concepts you learn about in this class are hard to understand without the assistance of videos. For example, I watched the same video of neural tube formation probably 6-8 times before I was confident enough to move on. (Here’s the link if you were interested.)
Actually, I think I’ll just link all of my go-to videos!

In my opinion, these topics are difficult to learn about on paper, so I recommend watching some videos to help you gain a more comprehensive understanding of each concept.

  • Tip #3: Study with real-life examples.

You will be learning about many different conditions and disabilities in this class and it can be hard to keep track of each individual disability. I guess this tip is pretty similar to the last tip but I suggest looking up “Living with ______” when you are studying disabilities. Hearing the story from a real person and watching how the disability affects their daily life is a lot more memorable than reading bullet points off a slide.

Foundations: Creativity, Craft and Activity Analysis
I can’t lie, this class was the most fun out of the 4 Foundations courses. However, I might be a little biased because Crafts was the only class I had in person. Towards the end of the semester, we started having in person Crafts a few times a month which made this class stand out from the others. In my opinion, this class is not stressful. In fact, it is the exact opposite! Being able to relax and create things with my hands for three hours once a week allowed me to unwind and forget my worries. Therefore, I don’t have many study tips, but I do have some advice!

  • Tip #1: Fully immerse yourself in the activity.

When I first started this class, I had a hard time letting myself relax and enjoy the moment when we were crafting. As you all probably know, being a full time student can be overwhelming. I did not want to allow myself to relax because I felt guilty for not studying. Although you may feel this way at times, please enjoy yourself and have fun with this unique opportunity to make art in class! During this course, I decided I would put my entire heart into it because I wanted to find a new favorite occupation. I eventually realized how happy I was when I crafted, and decided to pick up nail art as a hobby.

  • Tip #2: Get a head start on your final essay.

I would get a head start on your final essay if possible. When I was in the class, Dr. Dieterle posted the prompt for the final essay a few weeks before it was due. I ended up writing it that weekend because I had 2 other finals on the same day the final essay was due! Hopefully none of you have 3 finals on one day, but you will be thanking yourself for getting a headstart on your work when exams start to pile up.

  • Tip #3 Take notes during guest speaker presentations.

This might be obvious but you should take lots of notes during the guest speaker presentations! I’m not sure if you have to write Guest Speaker Reflections, but if you do, it will be helpful to take ample notes during the presentation so you have plenty of topics to write about in your reflection. As a bonus, these notes might be a source of inspiration for you in your future career!

That was my last tip for the blog. I hope you enjoyed this mini-series and found this advice helpful. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).
Thank you for tuning in!

Post a comment / question

Please note that comments are moderated, and won't appear immediately. If you ever want to modify or delete a comment after you've submitted, write to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) and we'll take care of it.

Your name

Your email address (optional)

Your comment / question