Med School Essentials

You’ve just been accepted into medical school, you celebrated, cried, laughed, and reminisced about your journey to gain that acceptance letter. Once you’ve finally taken in that you’re going to be a doctor, you have that “Oh Crap, what do I need for Med School” moment. We have all had it.

Professors provide an extensive list of textbooks, the school provides an extensive list of materials, and you’re looking at your bank account going ” Well, I’m too poor for school”.

Through my post-bac and my first year of medical school, I’ve accumulated a list of important supplies for medical school. If you have any questions, feel free to send me an e-mail!


  • Apple iPad Pro 
    • I have everything on my iPad from class notes to textbook PDFs. Especially during class, I can highlight and mark my notes when my professor does on my iPad without having to re-write my notes. I have a lot of classmates that learn better if they re-write their notes, and they also use their iPad. It eliminates the piles of paper you will accumulate in one semester, and your notes will be saved on all your devices.  I have the 10.5 inch because I already have a 13-inch laptop where my notes get synced to, but some prefer the 12 inch iPad.
    • NOTE: Other classmates have the Surface Pro or other laptops that are integrated with a touchscreen, they all love their own technology for it works best for them. Just be sure to have a stylus with whichever choice you make.
  • Apple Pencil
    • Necessary to write all over your notes on your iPad.
  • Laptop/ keyboard for the iPad
    • You will find yourself needing to type notes frequently, be sure to have a laptop or add a keyboard to your iPad.
  • Noise Canceling Headphones
    • I prefer Bose just because the material is lighter on my head and prevents me from getting headaches, but any brand you’re comfortable with works!
  • External Hardrive
    • DON’T BUY YOUR TEXTBOOKS! You can most likely get access to supplemental material from upperclassmen if you ask! This applies to literally every medical school, regardless of where you attend. I have everything on my hard drive, and if I happen to need something I’ll open it on my laptop and airdrop to my iPad.


  • Highlighters
    • I prefer Stabilo or Zebra Mildliners as my go-to highlighters. Sometimes I need to write out pathways on printer paper just to organize my thoughts and condense my notes, especially for biochem and immunology. Any brand of bright highlighters work, but the ones I’ve listed don’t smear which I find as a huge plus.
  • Colored Pens
    • Like the highlighters, I have my go-to brand- Muji colored pens and Stabilo fineliners. Again, if you have a brand that already works well for you buy more! Colored ink is a must in medical school, especially during pathways.
  • Planner
    • May it be Google Calendar or a physical planner, be sure to have some form of planning and organizing. In Medical School, it’s vital to plan ahead and stick to your schedule.
  • Adjustable Laptop Stand 
    • You will find yourself sitting  majority of the day studying, constantly looking down to your laptop is really bad for your neck. I recommend getting something that adjusts your laptop screen to eye level.
  • Water Bottle
    • If you don’t have time to eat, at least stay hydrated- LOL. That’s my motto in life! I have the Hydro Flask 40oz Waterbottle, which does a good job keeping my water cool for long periods of time.  A little on the pricey side, but I found it worth the money. Just for a reference, I got my 40oz Water Bottle for around $36.

Textbooks/ Supplemental 

* I use these to supplement my learning in these classes w/ class notes unless the exam was NBME.*


  • Goodnotes
    • my go-to to open PDFs of textbooks or notes
  • Osmosis Med
    • My school provides us with a premium subscription to this, so I use it to take my notes. It does a really good job of scanning my class notes and providing links from the internet prevalent to the material if I need extra help!
    • When it comes to studying for Step 1, I’m planning on using their step 1 custom schedule creator!
  • Essential Anatomy 5
    • Get this when you take Anatomy!
  • Firecracker
    • Pre-made flashcards and practice questions for every subject! I love it!! You can get a 60-day free trial through AMSA if you’re a member.
      • I have  Promo Code for AMSA if you’d like a discounted membership in order to take advantage of all their discounts– e-mail me for more information!
  • Forest
    • Plant tree’s during your dedicated study time and avoid distracting yourself!

Medical Supplies 

  • All the medical supplies on your school’s list you will need throughout your studies. As for the stethoscope, it doesn’t matter what kind you get or even the brand, as long as you’re clearly able to hear heart and lung sounds.

If you have any questions in regards to medical school or life in general, feel free to e-mail me using the form below!

Follow me on Instagram if you aren’t already @foodiewithscrubs!

Stay Smiling,

Preety 🙂



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