If you asked me this question last year I would have recommended not doing anything at all and simply enjoying the Summer, because you might as well enjoy this final break before diving in. I would have also said this because Medicine at Manchester is very much centred around PBL cases meaning that it’s quite difficult to sit at home and learn about a topic without having it in the context of the PBL case and your learning agenda.
However…this year the situation is clearly quite different and months on end of just relaxing might not be the best thing to do. So…with that in mind, the one thing that will help you is starting with learning some basic Anatomy. Anatomy is very content heavy and when you first start in year 1 it does take a while to get used to all the anatomical terminology. You can easily learn anatomy from home because I learnt all my Anatomy using websites and Youtube videos (I may put up a blog post about resources I used).
For now I’d recommend using TeachMeAnatomy.info (which btw you’ll learn to become best friends with because it’s the ultimate lifesaver). Start with Anatomical Terminology (Under Basics), then move on to working through Joints and Histology under that section – you’ll cover all these right at the beginning of year one over the first few Anatomy sessions. If you feel like going even further you can then make a start on the Reproductive Systems as that’s what we cover in Semester 1.
Here is a blog post with some additional pointers/tips to help those of you preparing to start medical school in the next academic year.
Though I’ve suggested what you could be doing I’d like to stress not to feel pressured to learn anything at all if you don’t want to because it’s absolutely not necessary. You’ll learn it all through your first year and it’ll probably make a lot more sense when you do because you’ll be able to see the pro-sections and have a go at dissecting in your Anatomy sessions. If you do decide to attempt learning some Medicine be relaxed with it and treat it like a hobby rather than a must-know exercise. Remember to still make the most of this Summer doing other things to relax too!