Having completed an Honours degree in Anatomy, Sneha George was in a very good position when vying for a coveted place on the postgraduate medicine programme at Deakin University. Her previous qualification demonstrated that she was prepared for the high intensity nature of learning medicine, and also helped her stand out from the other candidates.
The medical course is very demanding, and students are expected to continuously build on knowledge already learnt. This is where Sneha says her postgraduate research experience worked really well for her.
“Doing postgrad research made me more independent and taught me about effective time management, and I’ve definitely drawn on these experiences though out the year.”
Her level of Anatomy knowledge going in to study medicine has made it easier for her to pick up on content being taught, and being able to recall concepts learnt in her undergraduate studies has made the workload seem less daunting.
Sneha enjoyed her undergraduate papers in Anatomy and says that, after speaking to a few lecturers about the research they were doing, to her it was an obvious choice to pursue further study in the department.
Her Honours research looked at the effect the metabolic hormones leptin and ghrelin has on fertility.
“Postgrad study is great because you decide what you want to do. It’s a fresh change from undergrad study. With research, you have the opportunity to direct your own learning, attend conferences and interact with the top experts in the field. There’s a lot of potential for growth and I loved that!”
Although Sneha does caution that research is not a walk in the park and requires commitment, she also says she found it rewarding and fun, especially as she can now say that she has written a thesis!
She recommends anyone thinking of going on to postgraduate study to find a topic they are interested in, and a supervisor they get along with and are comfortable working with.
“Talk to a variety of people so you know what options are out there and find a research topic you are motivated to investigate and enjoy learning about. Be sure your purpose is something that drives you and most importantly, don’t let one or two failed attempts stop you from achieving your goal.”