You are currently viewing Steps to Academic Success in Pharmacy school.

Steps to Academic Success in Pharmacy school.

Step 1: Set Goals

Goals help to keep you going by:

  • Providing direction
  • Increasing your attention and focus
  • Increasing your motivation and effort
  • Reducing your anxiety and increasing your confidence

Develop SMART goals that are: Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely

Step 2: Have a Positive Attitude

  • Be positive about your ability to succeed
  • Look forward to what your will learn
  • Have an inquiring mind: get curious about your subjects!

Step 3: Manage Your Time

  • Set a realistic schedule for yourself
  • Know where your time goes (awareness is key)
  • Study for 2-3 hours for every hour of class time (eg. if you have 6 hours of class per week, aim to study at least 12-18 hours per week).

Step 4: Read Textbooks & Course Readings

  • Survey chapters before reading; read the chapter summary, look for bold and italicized words to indicate important concepts
  • Review chapters and readings before class
  • Re-read chapter and readings after class
  • Make study notes

Step 5: Attend your Lectures

  • Intend to learn something each class you attend
  • Do assigned readings before class- you’ll take better notes
  • Ask questions: this will enhance your learning process
  • Sit in the first few rows – you’ll pay closer attention

Step 6: Record your Lecture Notes

  • Take notes in class
  • Review and edit notes after class (within 24 hours)
  • Aim for 3-4 major reviews of your notes before exams
  • Highlight import points, draw diagrams, make definitions

Step 7: Prepare for Exams

  • Review past exams
  • Make practice study questions
  • Memorize definitions and formulae – try cue cards
  • Know the type of exam to expect
  • Eat balanced meals and sleep 8 hours per night

Step 8: Write Your Exams

  • Have a positive attitude; do your best
  • Arrive early with an extra pen and any necessary supplies (e.g., calculator if permitted – with fresh batteries)
  • Read test questions and instructions very clearly
  • Budget your time; leave time for review
  • Relax and don’t forget to breathe


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