There are many reasons why you should start a medical student blog. Documenting your experience, sharing your insight and getting better at writing are just some of the big reasons why. But there’s plenty more too.
Here we take a look at some of my favourite reasons. Hopefully convincing you to maybe give it a try too. Let’s dive in!
Quick note: If you’re already convinced (maybe just by reading this website ????) you can learn how to start a medical student blog here.
Get Better at Writing
OK, so here’s a little secret some of you (although I’ve mentioned it before) might not know about me. Medicine will actually be my second degree. English literature being the first.
Writing then? Not something I’m exactly a stranger to. But that’s not to say I don’t find it difficult (as some of my posts obviously attest!) Blogging on the regular though, as far as I see it, can be a massive help. Enabling me to get past my writers block and get plenty of opportunities to practice.
This is what I see starting a blog could do for you. Helping you develop your writing skills so that you can better communicate in the form.
As for what it could do for you in med school? Help better your presentations. Ace your essays. Open new doors to hospitals and doctors all around the world (helping you with all those cheeky emails). Make you a whole lot more confident – seeing as you’ve already got the science down – when it comes to using words!
Blogging Beats YouTube
I know you’re probably thinking, given the explosion of medical student YouTube channels, what the point of a blog is at all. But besides from being a platform for the less aesthetically pleasing (Kharma medic ruining it for all of us uggos), I think it has other benefits over video too.
The information you’ll read on a blog? So much easier to reference. Requiring only a quick scan to get to the things your audience might want to read about. Without forcing them through ten minutes of absolute drivel (careful what you call my work ????) That’s a user experience!
You’ll also own the platform. Meaning any revenue you could make from starting a medical school blog ???? wouldn’t be tied (or at the mercy of) a YouTube algorithm either.
Oh and there’s also the fact blogging is way cheaper and faster too (trust me, read the “how to”) Especially if you factor in the production costs, equipment and time taken to put together a half-decent video.
Am I getting nearer to convincing you yet?
A little more on the last point; yes blogging can make you money. Get really good at it however? And you can get a good steady income coming in that can go a long way in helping you supplement your studies.
Of course it’s not easy. You’re going to have to experiment a lot, try a bunch of things and fail a few times. But don’t lose heart. Most of the time success comes after hanging in long enough.
If you do want to take your medical school blog to the next level I’d suggest being active on other social channels too. Working Instagram photos into your blog posts, for example, is a good way to build an audience on both fronts. And you’ll be surprised the amount opportunities that can come up!
Medical school gear reviews on all the latest cool stuff? Could be waiting for you around the corner.
Document Your Medical School Journey
Going through medical school you’re destined to face a lot of challenges. Not to mention some heavy clinical work experience. What better way to chronicle all that than a medical student blog?
Case in point: the surgery journals UK students are often encouraged to keep to detail their future interest and commitment. Having that public to the world, for working doctors (and other students) to read and see, could serve as serious inspiration. And help you show off all the crucial things you learned too.
In some ways I wish I’d done that sooner with my second year surgical experience in orthopaedics. Having done so, I’d probably remember a lot more of what I saw and did!
Learn to Think More Critically
Writing is akin to reading in helping you shape and form your thoughts. Starting a medical school blog, I’d argue, can help you think more critically about the world around you. Thus putting you in a better position to spot opportunities and potential solutions to things you think might need fixing (and healthcare has a lot of problems!) too.
Publishing your thoughts to the world has real value. It shows how you’re developing not just as a future doctor but as a possible leader too. And you can chart your evolution through time.
Having things to look back on and critique; no matter how painful they might be, provides opportunity for personal growth. You’ll see how far you’ve come. And maybe take some more pride in your journey if you happen to be struggling.
Understand You Have Valuable Insight
A funny thing I find with lots of medical students around me? They don’t feel they have anything unique or interesting to say. ????
This couldn’t be further from the truth though. Especially at an international medical school where everybody has completely different career plans. And hugely different backgrounds.
Indian students studying medicine in Bulgaria? That’s an interesting prospect. Just as it is for Brits, Germans, Japanese and everyone else too. People are thirsty to hear what you have to say. And you’ll be surprised the number of people who’ll reach out to you too.
Just as I am every time an email from someone from some other far flung place lands in my inbox. Asking me about everything med. Pretty cool ????
Develop New Skills Outside of Medicine
Readers of this site will know how keen I am to push learning things outside of medicine just as much as I am in it. Your long term health and happiness, I’d argue? Definitely depends on leveraging all the skills in your toolbox.
Starting a medical student blog can definitely help you do that. You’ll learn how to come up with creative ideas and put them into action. You’ll make new connections with people both online and offline.
Then there’s the whole heap of technical skills you’ll get to master too. Like how to build a basic website. Or how to manage a content management system. Or how to source and edit photos to go along with your exciting new post ideas.
Even if you fail at blogging (don’t worry most of us do) or decide it’s not for you? The skills you learned trying aren’t anything ever going to go to waste!
Share & Help Others On Their Medical Student Journey
Last but not least, another great reason to get writing? You’ll help a whole bunch of others.
Being a mature medical student, for example, I hope what I have to say on this website doesn’t seem too out of touch with the younger crowd. Likewise with the younger student bloggers – I still think they’ve plenty useful to say that really helps an older guy like me out.
The bottom line? Everyone can learn from each other. No matter what your background, age or experience.
And that’s what I feel medicine should ultimately be all about!
Why You Should Start A Medical Student Blog: Final Thoughts
If you’re still not convinced about the idea of blogging – I understand some people just don’t want to put themselves out there – then that’s totally fine too. There’s lots of ways to help in the world and writing is only one of them.
But if you do feel it could be something for you, I’d urge you give it a try. You might surprise yourself with how rewarding and fun it can be.
Check out my guide on how to start a medical student blog here.
Born and raised in the UK, Will went into medicine late (31) after a career in journalism. He’s into football (soccer), learned Spanish after 5 years in Spain, and has had his work published all over the web. Read more.