The First Year: Guest post by Student Dispenser


First year of the MPharm degree is over! Looking forward to a nice summer. So the Olympics are just round the corner and currently the Euro 2012 is the latest event everyone is talking about.

So reflecting on the first year. Hmmm. Well this year has flown by so fast. Overall this year builds on the foundations of A-level content and goes a little more in depth. We have 2 semesters, involving studying four modules in each. The main topic studied in the first year involves several including: Cell Biology, Physiology, Pharmaceutics, Microbiology, Chemistry (that I dread) and Professional Practice.

The timetable was scheduled with classes, practicals and workshops being scheduled every weekday. First semester involved introducing the first years to the idea of self-motivating yourself, and managing your time efficiently, and sticking to deadlines. I had to get around the idea of completing and submitting several assignments and practical reports at the same time. I didn’t get much of a Christmas break due to leaving the revision to the last minute. Sigh. I told myself that I wouldn’t leave it to the last minute, next semester.

So after the first semester exams, we had a week to recuperate before the second semester starts.

The timetable for second semester was slightly better than first semester, with having an extra day off, meaning three days weekend. The second semester was still quite packed with lots of practicals, assignments and workshops. But yet again, I kind of left the revision to the last minute. In addition, I was dreading the dispensing exam (pass around 60%) that you must pass to proceed into the second year, where they arrange for 2 more resits in case you fail to pass in your first attempt. After sitting a mock, I got a feeling of what to expect. However, I did fail the mock on foolish mistakes i.e. writing the wrong expiry date, writing the wrong quantities when I calculated the correct quantities. In addition, I ran out of time. So the real exam came close. I was feeling so nervous, and couldn’t sleep but just had to think positive. So after sitting the dispensing exam, I wasn’t really sure whether I passed or not. But luck favoured me, and so did my loads of prayers for which I think I passed first attempt. But, then after that exam, the rest of the exams began. Overall, I’m not sure how they went but just hope I pass.

Now just eagerly waiting for the results in July!

What can you remember of your first year? Let me know what you think of this post. Thanks for reading.

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4 thoughts on “The First Year: Guest post by Student Dispenser

  1. My first year was in 1988-89 and it was a BSc, no MPharm’s then! The main thing I can remember was that we were the first year in Dispensing at Portsmouth to use a computer (an Amstrad Word Processor, so I recall) to generate labels – not all of it, mind, just the drug details, amount, dose and main warning. Other warnings still had to be stuck on the bottle separately! I also remember our first practical involved making Powders…

    This makes me sound so, so old!

  2. Hey, I have a feeling you go to the same university as me.
    Can you tell me more about the dispensing exam?
    Thanks.

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