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Must Have's Free

With so many resources online (including this one) it's easy to overwhelmed. Below is the list of the one's you should be using so frequently that your internet search bar autofill's with just one letter!

This here is my CHEAT SHEET! I created this excel sheet when I was writing my notes on my first run through of the curriculum. It has every LO listed by topic (left column) and my recommendation for the best resources to gather information (right column). Additionally at the end of each sheet I have given a time frame for how long it took to get through a topic. (Note; I am a slow learner so it took me 8 months to cover the curriculum, majority of you will be able to do it quicker!). There are some hidden gems in the document such as YouTube videos explaining Bernoulli's principle and Isomerism. Obviously there is huge bias here but I recommend at least having a quick scan!

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While there might be no such thing as model answers, Ketamine Nightmares comes as close as you can get. Dr Watson's bank of questions are comprehensive to say the least and to the point. If you are more of narrative writer (as you can tell by my style) when it comes to answering SAQs you might be more inclined to Propofol Dreams  Regardless of which one you like all the links are in MAK95 which is why it's the number 1 Must have $

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Dr Alex Yartsev's website is a must use resource, each summary box for a topic is like finding a diamond in the rough, and these make for great flash card notes. What I often found myself doing was going into a rabbit hole while on the website (because the content is so good!), remember pull yourself out of this rabbit hole otherwise you will get lost in heparin first and zero order kinetics. I never used deranged as my first resource but used it to supplement a concept I just couldn't grasp from reading a text book. This way I felt I got the best of both worlds with time management and understanding depth of topic.

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To this day I have no idea who the Good Guys are but I'm glad they exist. Chances are if you ask someone that is sitting the part 1 they will have a copy of the notes. Given that I cannot verify the author I cannot provide link to the notes myself. The beautiful thing about the Good Guys is that their notes seem to cover every LO for physiology and pharmacology and you can see that the notes have clearly been created using the ANZCA Recommended texts. This was by far my most used resource when it came to note making!

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Multimodal approach to learning is key! The more ways you can take in knowledge (write your own notes, read texts, watch videos and listen to podcasts) the better. If its a toss up between ICU primary PrepCast or Dr Podcasts I choose the former any day. Although its ICU focused the depth of knowledge for a topic is what you need. If you're just starting I recommend to listen at 1x speed, after a few podcasts bump it up to 1.25x. The addition recently of Dr Michael Clifford is must listen, the bedside pods are a real insight into the examiners brain!

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This Primer is a great place to start as you contemplate starting to study for the primary. The first time I read the 'How to fail the primary' it was a real eye opener. What sticks with me most is that as a candidate your best chance of passing is on your first attempt. So don't start studying if your not serious! My mantra was that if I needed to delay my sitting to give me more time to study then I would! Extended training is not the end of the world! The excel sheet linked to the LO's has true and false statements, don't worry till this day I still don't know the answer to many of these! 

Now I have to put a disclaimer, these are simply my recommendations. There are many other free resources available (check out 'useful links') but these are the ones I constantly had open on my tabs. These Must Have's cover a wide array of learning material and each offer something unique.

My Advice would be to read the Primer first, the first 5 pages of the document give you a good overview of how the Primary works and is marked, as well as common pitfalls. Reading it should make you nervous and that's normal. The google sheets have some very specific but also some very common statements. I recommend not to go try chasing the answers, but use it as a guide for the depth of knowledge you need. Remember that any question in the exam can only come from the LO's, so read what Dr Reeves has to say about each topic carefully!!

What you find as you make your primary notes is that it's hard to tell what information is important and what's not. Especially with physiology topics, its hard not to go down the wrong rabbit hole. Pharmacology seems to be more straight forward but don't get hung up with slight difference in 'VD' and 'PKA' , pick a recommended text and stick with it.


As a general rule as soon as you finish making notes on a LO I would suggest look at the SAQ related to that topic straight away on Ketamine Nightmares. If you use Good Guys and Deranged to make your notes you should have a good solid understanding of each LO's. Supplement this with the Must Have $ and your depth should be well covered.

Feedback always welcome, if you think anything else needs to be added to the Must Have's Free list please let me know!

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