Wondering what’s life like as an international student in China? Thinking about research but don’t know where to start? Perhaps you’re looking for insights on OET and PLAB?

Oh, silly me!
You lost your way while scrolling on Medium…

Welcome to my thoughts. Hopefully this little blog offers you some fresh perspectives, just enough to keep you entertained as much as I enjoy writing.

Cheers! 🍻


Insights for OET Aspirants

A short guide for fellow doctors who are considering the OET, but unsure of where to start — personal resources & tips included.

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash


Health & Science

A glimpse at the scientific milestones of gut microbiome over the years and what you can do to improve your gut health in times of COVID-19.

Image by rawpixel.com

Coughing is one of the most typical respiratory symptoms of COVID-19. In fact, it is the most common presentation that warrants suspicion for a potential SARS-CoV-2 infection. However, when you suffer from a tummy ache, it is unlikely that “COVID-19” would be the first culprit on your mind, right?

Although gastrointestinal (GI) manifestations such as diarrhea and loss of appetite are the less commonly discussed symptoms of COVID-19, it is imperative for the public to be aware of its potential to spread via fecal-oral transmission and its link to unfavorable outcomes. A meta-analysis published in February 2021 investigated 125 scientific…


Book Summary / Review

This is more than your average self-help book.

Picture of ‘Show Your Work’ from Austin Kleon’s website (https://austinkleon.com/show-your-work/).

I didn’t expect myself to be here writing book summaries / reviews after a decade of graduating from middle school (yes, it has been that long). But this is a really good book, and I figured why not take this opportunity to make some notes for myself and simultaneously inspire others who happen to be reading this.

Couple of weeks ago, I planned to read Austin Kleon’s ‘Steal Like an Artist’, but ‘Show Your Work’ caught my eye, and since I’m on this blogging journey, reading the latter first seemed more apt.

What is this book about? 📖

‘Show Your Work’ is a brilliantly written 224…


How the novel coronavirus robs your sense of smell, and what can be done about it.

Woman photo created by freepik — www.freepik.com

For generations to come, there is no doubt that 2020 will be branded as the year of the pandemic. Perhaps 2020 will also make us realize how little we know about the coronavirus and post-viral smell loss. It took us by surprise when the majority of COVID-19 patients reported this unusual symptom, and we hardly know what to do about it.

Although it is established that COVID-19 (the disease), specifically, SARS-CoV-2 (the virus), causes respiratory symptoms (shortness of breath) by primarily infecting one’s lungs; an insidious finding has been reported in more than 50% of COVID-19 patients: anosmia (the loss…


Technology

Essentials for the digital era.

A rainy day in Shanghai. Taken en route to the British Consulate General Shanghai in 2019.

Having spent the past six years studying in Shanghai, China, I’ve come to realize how much my life has revolved around smartphone apps. Don’t get me wrong, I’m neither addicted nor dependent on them, it’s just that having them around has made my stay in China exceedingly convenient. Except for a few must-haves — which I find essential to my survival.

Without further ado, here are the top 10 apps you should be downloading before coming to China in order to have that smooth transition experience:

1. To breach ‘The Great Firewall of China’: NordVPN 🌐🔥

China is infamous for its strict internet censorship policy. For years, they’ve had an…


Insights for MBBS aspirants

A post-graduation personal reflection.

Fudan University, Shanghai, China. Taken in Handan campus.

I remember my first day in university like it was yesterday: the thrill of being in a new country, the excitement of meeting my classmates for the very first time, laughing at the prison-like cafeteria trays (that have since become a daily staple), exploring Shanghai over the weekends and even getting lost on campus (yes, my sense of direction was beyond catastrophic). Fudan University was where I’ve found life-long friends and met amazing mentors. It has become my home from home. ❤️

For someone who rarely journals, this has been a wonderful opportunity to introspect and reflect upon the past…


Tidbits for MBBS Undergraduates

Things you’ll want to know before starting out.

Just monkeying around with a pipette 😆

In this final post of a “three part series”, I’ll be sharing my personal tips about research and publication that nobody has ever told you in med school, in hopes that somebody reading this will benefit from it. 🙈

Over the years of carrying out primary research during my undergrad years, I’ve acquired a list of things that anyone can do when aiming to publish a research paper within a relatively short span of time.

1. “Hop on a bandwagon” 💃

Do you know someone who is currently writing a research paper? Say, a lecturer, classmate, senior or a post-grad?

Express genuine interest in their work…


Tidbits for MBBS undergraduates

How to choose mentors and journals?

Photo by Tachina Lee on Unsplash

Welcome to the second post on tips to kick-start your very first publication! If you missed the first post on what types of articles are suitable for undergrads to write, feel free to give that a quick gander before proceeding.

With that said, today I’ll be sharing with you a list of criteria I use when choosing mentors and journals.

How to choose a mentor?

A mentor (who goes by many names: PI, short for Principal Investigator, supervisor, boss, etc.,) can literally make or break your research (and your fighting spirit), especially if you’re doing an original primary research. …


Travel & Insights

A post-graduation reflection.

A night view of Shanghai by The Bund (taken on my friend’s android phone). The building in red is the famous Oriental Pearl Tower.

When people ask about my academic career, it is inevitable for me to mention the city that has nurtured me for the past six years. Shanghai has undoubtedly become my second home and I am eager to return after the pandemic subsides.

For today’s post, I hope to share my impressions and thoughts of the city known as ‘The Pearl of Asia’, and bits of Chinese culture as well as some memorable experiences. Perhaps I may even rediscover fresh perspectives along the way.

Impressions of the City 🌆

I’ve always known that China is a communist country, but aside from the occasional glimpse of Chairman…

Alice Halim

A Fudan University med grad sharing her journey in Shanghai and beyond. Since you’ve read all that, you might as well read on ;) Let’s connect on IG @alicehalim

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