Hello there. I and a freshman here at the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, and I just have a question about the amount of time you should study per day/week for courses. I am a bit conflicted about how much time to put into studying and how much time to put into community service, etc.. I am currently taking Bio 172/173, CogSci 200, UROP, and Spanish 103 which adds up to about 16 credit hours. Just wondering, how many hours do you think some one of this courseload should study per day? (My apologies if this seems a bit subjective but I am still wondering).
Firstly, your schedule looks to be of average/slightly heavier workload but still manageable, so you will have plenty of time to study! Generally, it is recommended that you spend 3-4 hours per course credit studying for a class outside of lecture time. For example, BIO 172 is 3 credits, which means you should aim to spend 9-12 hours/week doing homework and/or studying outside of lectures (this range may be lower or higher depending on your comfort level/familiarity with the class material). While I do not have an answer for the amount of time spent studying per day (which also may not be the same everyday of the week, for example, you may have multiple class meetings on Monday and little time to study but have no classes on Thursday and have all day to study), you should have a balance between your classes, your studying, your extracurriculars, and your personal free time.
In terms of extracurriculars, like you mentioned, it differs from person to person. Here is a link to a previous question I answered that highlights the number of hours spent on volunteering, clubs, etc. and how to prioritize your time. Definitely check it out for more detailed information! I would recommend participating in 1-2 clubs, doing some sort of virtual or safe in-person volunteering during your week (if possible), and allowing yourself to have some personal free time to balance out your schedule. If you are able to partake in clinical experiences (in a safe and comfortable manner), that’s great as well! However, I wouldn’t worry too much about that right now considering you have more time ahead in your college career to gain patient interaction hours and considering the difficult circumstances we are in. On the other hand, it is great that you are partaking in research, and you should stick with it if you enjoy it. While research is not specifically required for medical schools, it is a great supplement to your other activities.
I hope this helps! Let us know if you have any other questions or feel free to stop by our advising hours next week (Sun-Wed from 6-10 pm).
Leen, PMH Advisor