5th year

Page created on September 29, 2021. Last updated on February 6, 2023 at 20:17

5th year consists only of clinical small and medium-sized subjects, where there’s no single subject which requires most of your attention (like pharma or patho). Instead you should choose 1 – 3 subjects to focus on each semester, and learn the rest in the exam periods. You could try to read a bit of all subjects during the semester but in my experience this becomes impossible with this many subjects.

Like for fourth year, Anne and Hatem have written notes for many of the subjects of fifth year. I don’t have as many notes for fifth as for fourth year.

Fall semester

In my opinion, the biggest subject in this semester is Paediatrics 1, followed by Neurology 1 and Ob/Gyn 1. I would recommend to study paeds during the semester, not only because it’s the biggest subjects (and arguably the most difficult exam) but also because the department can be strict and expect you to know stuff during the semester, to a larger degree than other departments.

When I had this semester Surgery 2 and Forensic Medicine were written due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which I don’t think they’ll continue with. Both exams were a shitshow, though, especially Forensic Medicine, which few passed. They reduced the passing point limit slightly, but many people still had to go for the oral B chance. Luckily, Forensic oral is, from what I’ve heard, the nicest and chillest oral exam during the studies. Rumours say the only one who’ve failed it in many years was a person who withdrew from the exam voluntarily.

We also had ophthalmology written, which I’m not sure is usual or not.

My exam period

  • Diabetology exam on Thursday week 13 of the instruction period
  • Opthalmology exam 09:00 on Monday week 14 of the instruction period
  • Dermatology exam course 10:00 on Monday week 14 of the instruction period
  • Forensic Medicine exam on Thursday week 14 of the instruction period
  • Surgery 2 exam Monday week 1 of the exam period
  • Gastroenterology exam Wednesday week 1 of the exam period
  • Psychiatry exam Friday week 1 of the exam period
  • Neurology 1 exam Monday week 2 of the exam period
  • — Christmas break —
  • Ob/Gyn 1 exam Monday week 4
  • Paeds 1 exam Friday week 4

As you can see, we were lucky in being given the option to complete three exams before the exam period started, allowing me to finish exam period pretty early.

I studied only paeds 1 and neurology 1 during the semester.

Paediatrics 1

Both me and Anne have written notes in paeds 1. From what I gather, the topic list changes regularly, so check with the course director to make sure. Our topic list was different from the year before.

There are many topics and the lectures are of poor quality. I can’t speak for the seminars and practices in person, as we had them mostly online (where they were pretty poor).

The examiners are nicer at the exam than you might expect based on the classes, but many still have a hard time with it. I recommend studying it well during the semester.

Neurology 1

I’ve written notes in neuro 1 and I think they’re at least usable. We had our teacher as our examiner, which in almost all cases is a good thing, but I’m not sure if this is habitual or if it was due to COVID considerations. For me it was a very good thing. The exam is not difficult either way.

It’s another long topic list with a lot of theory and physical examination, so I’d recommend reading this during the semester also.

Obstetrics and gynaecology 1

I’ve written notes in obgyn1 and 2 which I think are quite okay. Hatem has also written notes in ob/gyn 1 which are good. The lectures and seminars are pretty poor and there are many topics which are not covered by it. Luckily the examiners (one examiner examines almost all students) is very nice and so the exam is not difficult.

Psychiatry 1

The lectures in psych are actually quite good, so I’d recommend you to watch them if you have the time. Most of them aren’t even 45 minutes and they’re all available on youtube.

Anyway we have good notes for the psych exams, and so you shouldn’t need more than 2 – 5 days in the exam period to prepare for it. The exam is not difficult.


The lectures in gastro are quite poor, and the seminars as well. To be honest I didn’t learn gastro well. The only notes I know of are Lee’s notes, but it’s a written exam anyway so a lot of time is not necessary to prepare for it.


Diabetology is your first exam at the 2nd department of internal medicine since internal medicine propedeutics, but rest assured that they’re much nicer at this exam than that one. It’s a relatively short exam which focuses on the most important aspects of diabetology. Before our exam, a teacher at the department said that we should focus on the following, which are “considered to be the basics of diabetology”:

  • Diagnostic criteria of diabetes and prediabetic conditions with exact values!
  • The classification of diabetes mellitus with subgroups, where needed
  • The acute and chronic complications of diabetes mellitus
  • Therapy of type 2 diabetes: major approaches and types of antidiabetic medications, pros and cons to the individual groups

You don’t draw topics and there’s no prep time, you’ll only get asked a handful of questions you’ll discuss. The lectures and seminars are quite poor, but the notes I’ve written are more than enough. You could do this in 1 – 2 days.

Surgery 2

Surgery 2 is another subject I didn’t learn well at all. The lectures and seminars are quite poor. When I had the exam it was written, but I believe it will return to being oral from now on. I didn’t write notes for surgery 2 specifically but I wrote for the surgery final (6th year), which includes most (all?) surgery 2 topics. You may use them for preparing for the surgery 2 oral exam (but the topics aren’t exactly the same). Otherwise you have Lee notes.

Forensic medicine

The lectures and seminars in forensic medicine are very hit and miss, some are quite good but some are just completely incomprehensible. Anyway our exam was written, but apparently it’s impossible to fail the oral, and people have passed it easy after studying Lee’s notes for 1 – 2 days (although when I looked at those notes I couldn’t imagine finishing them in that amount of days).


Ophthalmology is propably the most frequently misspelled medical subspeciality. The lectures and seminars we had online had a very high technical quality, but they were otherwise completely incomprehensible. Our exam was written. I assume Lee has notes for it but I’m not sure.

Spring semester

Spring semester is mostly the same story as the fall semester, even with many of the same subjects. If you have PH6 I recommend primarily spending time on that during the semester. If not, I recommend focusing on paeds 2 and neuro 2. If you want you could focus on 1 – 2 of the others as well, although it shouldn’t be necessary. You could probably manage the exam period without studying during the semester at all (but I of course don’t recommend that).

My exam period

  • Family medicine Friday week 14 of the instruction period
  • Psychiatry 2 Monday week 1 of the exam period
  • Pulmonology Tuesday week 1
  • Infectology Wednesday week 1
  • Medical Genetics Thursday 8:15 week 1
  • Endocrinology Thursday 12:00 week 1
  • Paediatrics 2 Friday week 1
  • Nephrology Wednesday week 2
  • Anaesthesia Tuesday week 3
  • Neurology Friday week 3
  • Ob/gyn 2 Thursday week 4

As you can see I was quite the maniac in the first week, before slowing down considerably over the next weeks. It was doable but very tiring, so I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it. Still can’t believe I passed them all.

Paediatrics 2

Paeds 2 A chance is written, unlike paeds 1 which is always oral. The written exam was difficult when I had it; many failed. The oral is better than the paeds 1 oral, from what I heard.

I didn’t write notes in paeds 2, but Anne did and I’ve heard they’re good. The department claims that the written is based only on paeds 2 lectures but we had some questions from topics not covered in lecture at all and some questions from paeds 1 material, so be prepared for that.

Neurology 2

Neuro 2 is easier than neuro 1 in my opinion, as the topics feel more concrete and familiar. My notes in neuro 2 should be quite good for the exam.

Family Medicine

Family med is an interesting subject. Some lectures and seminars were poor, but some were really good. Either way, the exam is quite easy as it’s based on knowledge you have from other subjects, and there are questions in which logical reasoning gives you the correct answer. You shouldn’t need more than 1 – 2 days for it.

Psychiatry 2

Psych 2 is the same as psych 1. Nothing else to say.

Medical Genetics

Nobody likes genetics, especially the way it’s taught and tested at POTE. I believe they reduce the passing limit when people do poorly. To study for it you should try to read lectures or other notes.

Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care

This subject overlaps with a few others, so that many topics are familiar. Both me and Anne have notes in anaesthesia. The exam varies from examiner to examiner: for a few, the exam is only a few minutes long without prep time, but for most, there is prep time and the exam lasts a bit longer. It may be challenging but most people pass. I’d recommend 2 – 4 days of preparation.

Obstetrics and Gynaecology 2

The examiner is the same as for ob/gyn 1, and the experience is the same. Both me and Hatem have notes for ob/gyn 2. In my opinion, ob/gyn 2 is easier than 1, but there are still a handful of difficult topics. 3 – 5 days?


Nephrology is also a part of the 2nd department of internal med, and the exam is similar to the diabetology exam but more extensive. You don’t draw topics and are instead asked questions or asked to talk about 2 – 3 disorders or findings. The exam is not difficult.

The department has made a “handout” covering a lot of the nephrology curriculum, but in my opinion it’s way too long and way to bloated to be useful. I’ve made notes relevant to the nephrology exam (based on the lectures) as part of the internal med final notes. They should be enough, although you should check out the other notes as well.

Pulmonology, endocrinology, infectology

These are all written. The written exams are not the most difficult, but far from the easiest. I’ve written some (and plan to write more) topics for the internal med oral final in 6th year which obviously include topics from these three subjects. However, seeing as they’re written exams they often ask specific questions from the lectures which I might not include in the notes.

Endocrinology deserves some praise for basing most of their exam questions on stuff written directly on the powerpoints of the lectures. Pulmo and infecto on the other hand ask plenty of questions which are not covered on the lectures (believe me, I’ve checked). That said, read the lectures or some notes and you’ll be fine. I’ve covered many of the most important topics of these subjects in the internal med final notes.

Previous page:
4th year

Next page:
6th year

Parent page:
What to study

2 thoughts on “5th year”

  1. “Endocrinology deserves some praise for basing most of their exam questions on stuff written directly on the powerpoints of the lectures. Pulmo* and infecto on the other hand…”?

Leave a Reply

Inputting your name is optional. All comments are anonymous.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.