Time flies so fast! It was September just yesterday, and look where we are right now. To all of you reading this, I wish you a happy new year 2023. Through these months, I was getting used to the Swedish lifestyle and group work, and finally, I can say I understand Sweden more and more. Regarding my program – I’ve never learned as much as there before.
Overview of the autumn courses
Universities in Sweden differ in conducting classes from the ones I know. Classes during the semester are divided into several courses that take place one after the other (sometimes two at the same time). It is an excellent help, and I believe more countries should introduce such a teaching model. I’ve noticed a significant difference in learning just one subject at a time rather than many “bits and pieces” simultaneously.
In the fall semester, I took three courses. People with previous technical backgrounds took four of them.
First course – Health informatics needs, objectives and limitations
I remember the first course warmly, mainly because those were my first days in Stockholm. The study was held at the KI Solna campus. The joy of attending classes, meeting new people, the whole university, and the teaching system was enormous. I rate the quality of the course as very good. Clearly explained lessons, access to materials, and some group and individual work made it an ideal introduction to the whole MSc in Health Informatics programme. In general, we learned what health informatics deals with, what fields of science it covers, and the challenges that we may be able to overcome someday. It was the perfect kick-off to the rest of the courses.
Second course – Supplementary course in computer and systems science (SUPCOM)
Essential medical science – technical background
Health care organization and management – – technical background
I can only comment on SUPCOM as I haven’t done the other two courses. One of the differences is the building where the courses take place. Supcom was run entirely by SU, with classes held at DSV in Kista, Stockholm, and courses for those who had technical background at the Solna KI campus.
The Supcom course was partly online and partly face-to-face. My favorite topics were: databases, cybersecurity, and computer systems. After each topic, there was an individual assignment. There was no group work in this course. I believe this course was one of the best and showed a variety of topics and taught us a lot of new things in a short time.
Third course – Computer applications in health care and biomedicine
At the end of the semester, we all returned to stationary classes at the KI Solna campus. It was nice to see the whole class again, without dividing into groups. The course was extensive, there was some group work, but the primary assignments were individual. Honestly, the classes were not as interesting for me as the assignments. To write them, I put a lot of work into research, read a lot, and watched movies on topics related to mHealth and more. It was so interesting to me that I spent hours reading about it. However, I consider it a significant advantage because I love to develop and prefer individual work a little more. This course has given me these opportunities, and I am sure that the knowledge I gained during these weeks will bear fruit in future and current courses – and even in my future job. During this course, we also had a lot of meetings with guests who told us about their work and how to apply the knowledge (we gained) practically.
Summing up, this semester, I will remember it very well! The level and learning style surprised me in a positive sense. Was it hard to pass this semester? My answer will not be a surprise. With properly planned work and study it wasn’t THAT hard ;)!
My name is Anna and I'm 24 years old. I am from Poland. I am studying the Master's Programme in Health Informatics at Karolinska Institutet. I have always been interested in Scandinavian culture; fika time is one of my favourites! I like to bake, edit videos, and play basketball or chess in my free time. I'm also a Stephen King enthusiast. A fun fact about me is I don't have space for more books in my room!