Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"Today, the student and I discussed various topics in molecular and cell biology. We began by discussing membrane traffic and transport. We moved on to oxidative phosphorylation and yields, as well as anaerobic metabolism. We then moved on to the cell cycle and DNA replication. We then began to discuss the central dogma, focusing on translation. Our discussion of transport required us to go back to the basic definition of diffusion, once again highlighting the need for fundamental grounding to anchor his understanding. Using my simplification and direction of how to study oxidation phosphorylation, she was able understand it better. I gave him some more molecular biology for homework."
"The student and I worked on the nervous system and endocrine systems today, and covered a lot of material. For the nervous system, I had her read about action potentials and signaling, and we talked about the setup and organization of the nervous system (the structures in the CNS and PNS). We talked about neurons and how the transmission of action potentials work, as well as synapses and the movement of neurotransmitters. We talked about reflex arcs in both the PNS and CNS, specially simple reflex arcs in the spinal cord, monosynaptic arcs (knee-jerk) and polysynaptic arcs (withdrawal reflex). We then moved on to the endocrine system, and talked about all of the organs and hormones involved, except for the ovaries and testes and sex hormones. We covered the hypothalamus, pituitary, adrenal glands, thyroid, parathyroid, pineal gland, thymus, heart, pancreas. For each gland, we talked about the hormones that are produced, their function, and the pathway of activation to effect. For all the hormones and structures we talked about, I linked the information to a disease or medication - a real-world application, because that is how this information will show up on the MCATs. At our next session, we are going to talk about the sex hormones, reproduction, embryology, and musculoskeletal system."
"We began by reviewing proportion problems and advanced word problems, since those were weak areas on yesterday's practice test. We also went over questions that required the use of the distance formula (e.g. find the distance between two points on the xy plane). We spent the rest of the session doing as many practice reading comprehension problems as possible. His speed and accuracy is definitely increasing, although he tends to answer some questions hurriedly towards the end of the session. I'm emailing him some more reading comprehension problems for homework to build up his mental endurance as much as possible."