Re: [Histonet] HTL Flash Cards?

From:"Bryan Llewellyn"

In the three example cards they show there are errors.

In the first one it gives "liter" and "meter".  I know this spelling is 
common in the United States, but I believe the SI standard is "litre" and 
"metre".  In other words, include both.

In the middle one, about reticulin staining, I would dispute the dogmatic 
nature of the information.  Although this is a common explanation, it is not 
the modern one, which uses analogies to the photographic process.  It is 
presented as absolute fact when it is an unproven suggestion as to what may 

The final one, about dye structure, uses "chromogen" as a synonym for 
"chromophore", whereas it is a little used term for the dye+chromophore 
combination.  For that reason, the final use of "chromophore" should 
actually be "chromogen".  The word "auxophore" does not exist.  It should be 

If you are going to use flash cards for improving rote learning of facts, 
make sure the facts being learned are correct.  I suggest that students 
should have the cards checked out by an experienced educator technologist 
before using them, as first-learned information stays with you for decades.

Bryan Llewellyn

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Lee & Peggy Wenk" 
To: "'Kristen Yaros'" ; "'Histonet'" 

Sent: Saturday, September 27, 2008 8:28 AM
Subject: RE: [Histonet] HTL Flash Cards?

>I had never heard of them, so I looked them up on the website. Morrison
> Media
> They sell all kinds of flashcards and study guides for lots of tests. 
> Under
> the E-H category, where the HT and HTL flashcards have a link, there are
> also links to Electrician exam, Paramedic exam, First Responder test,
> Funeral Service test, GED, GRE, GMAT - you get the idea.
> According to their general blurb, they have experts in the field writing 
> the
> flashcards. Does anyone know any histotech involved in writing the
> flashcards? I'd love for them to talk about this.
> I think for some people, having flashcards would fit with their style of
> learning - give them soundbites of information on topics, instead of 
> having
> them read entire books. Or use this as a supplement to studying. Or have
> them in their purse/pocket where they can pull out a card and study on the
> go, instead of a book.
> But I do have some concerns about the flashcards and the test taking
> information this company supplies. If there is someone out there who 
> helped
> write the cards, or someone who has bought the cards to respond, that 
> would
> be helpful.
> - They have topics divided into 2 tests (have to pay separate for them) - 
> HT
> and HTL. But when I look at what's on the HT exam vs. what's on the HTL
> exam, I have some concerns.
> - HTL need to know chemical fixatives, HT are supposed to know chemical 
> and
> physical fixation.
> - HTL need to know autolysis, HT are supposed to know autolysis and
> putrefaction
> - HTL need to know acid decalcification, HT are supposed to know
> decalcification and chelation
> - HT are supposed to know Immunofluorescence, Electron microscopy, 
> Carbowax
> and Celloidin, which are not listed on the HTL topics (yet ASCP HTL exam
> would include these topics, but ASCP HT exam would not)
> - The only stains listed for HT are H&E, Mucopolysaccharides, 
> Hyaluronidase,
> Gomori Trichrome.
> - HTL stains include Connective tissue, PTAH, Bacteria, Fungus, Gram,
> Auramine-Rhodamine, Exogenous pigments, Minerals. Yet on the ASCP HT exam,
> all these stains are also required for the HT exam.
> You get the idea.
> Also, under the "Histotechnology Exam Secrets Study Guide", they are 
> saying
> that their histotechnology exam study guide will help people "beat the 
> test
> taking game", and that their research in the HT and HTL exam offered by 
> "reveals specific weaknesses that you can exploit".
> Basically, what followed were test taking tips - how to guess to your
> advantage, how to tell the difference between right answers and clever
> sounding traps, how random bits of information often give away the right
> answer, how to look for key words to identify the correct answer, etc.
> Yet I know that the ASCP Board of Registry has (or at least did have) a
> psychometrician on staff - someone with a PhD in test writing, who works
> with the histotechs and pathologists writing the exam questions, to
> eliminate all the above "clues".
> Between this company's "tips" and the customer testimonials that they only
> studied for 1 week (one case, 5 hours) and passed the exam - I'm worried
> about people who aren't studying for the HT/HTL exam, and think these test
> taking clues will help them pass. This isn't like taking the GRE, where 
> you
> can get by with some math and grammar background that can to be 
> refreshed -
> the HT and HTL exams are based on a LOT of information that has to be
> The other concern I have is that the 3 flashcards they show as examples 
> are
> still MEMORIZED information. What test takers have problems with are the
> PROBLEM-SOLVING and TROUBLESHOOTING aspects of the HT and HTL exams. Yes,
> they need to know what the oxidizer in the retic stain is, but they also
> need to know how to tell if it isn't working, or what to do if they run 
> out,
> etc.
> So I'd love to hear from someone involved with writing these
> flashcards/study guides, and would love to hear from someone who actually
> bought them and used them.
> Peggy A. Wenk, HTL(ASCP)SLS
> Beaumont Hospital
> Royal Oak, MI 48073
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> [] On Behalf Of Kristen
> Yaros
> Sent: Wednesday, September 24, 2008 4:12 PM
> To: Histonet
> Subject: [Histonet] HTL Flash Cards?
> Has anyone heard of these? I just came across this site and was wondering 
> if
> anyone has used these pre-made flash cards.
> --
> Kristen Yaros, HT (ASCP)CM
> Histotechnology Society of Delaware
> Correspondence Secretary
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