Category Archives for USMLE Step 1

USMLE Step 1 Experience – US AMG

 

I am a US IMG since I have a green card, here is my story

I went to medical school in europe and did rotations in chicago

 

It took me approximately 9months-1year in total time to prepare for step 1 with some setbacks (ex: dad in hospital 3 times, funeral in india, stuff everyone deals with but it kept making me “restart” my studying process and it was mentally taxing.

 

I’m an average student and I want to give hope to anyone who has a dream of doing well on this exam. It’s not easy, there are no shortcuts but if it truly is your dream you have to be motivated, work very hard and sacrifice a lot.

 

Everyone says to do uworld and do it throughly, obviously it works for the masses and thats great but I want to share how I did it for those of us who dont find it effective or enjoy that method. Do not get me wrong questions are extremely important, but doesn’t mean you have to spend 4 hours reviewing a block.

 

I did all of the kaplan videos in: Physio, pharm, biochem, behavoiral, micro…at this time I did half of kaplan qbank

I did pathoma and barone path videos

I did sketchy micro

I did uworld-I finished about 65-70%, first pass i got around a 63% percent. I started at 35% and week before exam I was at 75-85%. all i did was make sure it was timed and random and looked at correct answer after and sometimes read main concept.

I did 70% usmlerx

I did DIT 2015 and DIT 2016-found this to be a great way to read through FA for the first time

 

I did all the NBME’s: I started at a 142 and ended with a 215 on NBME 18 a week before exam

***Please do NBME’s online and get feedback, invest a little money on the biggest exam.

1) make sure they are timed with 5-10 min breaks max between blocks, don’t lie to yourself or look up answers

2)feel the stress as if its the real deal

3)these are things that will help you be realistic- I would take my nbmes after studying all day and then take them from like 1am-6am-i gave my self harsh conditions and a lot of stress, knowing if I could perform like that before the exam, test day could never be worse. This strategy worked to perfection.

4)review your NBME’s and find the right answers for yourself-I think this is HUGE

 

I got 80% on free120 (after being awake over 24hours) 2 days before exam

anki cards i bought by yousmle- i didnt finish but they definitely helped with weak areas

 

I did thousands of questions overall but I didnt review them thoroughly, that could have helped me break 240-but maybe not, I know people who did it 3 times and didnt do so well. I refused to step 1 until my nbme was 215 or higher so I would have a cushion from failing, I figured if I went through all the material within a week via FA I could do okay.

 

during the last week I read FA 2016 along with 2017 PDF changes, I worked on weaknesses from NBME 18 first and also focused on question from uworld on that organ system.

 

study in a way thats effective for you, I did the videos i mentioned at least twice, most of them I did 3-4 times each. I figured I enjoyed and learnt a lot more by doing lecture videos than reading uworld explanations, at the end your going over the material one way or another. I rather understand it properly as a whole.

 

I might have missed stuff but feel free to ask anything or PM me if you like.

 

230+ was a dream of mine and I went hard to see if I could get close

 

the reddit survey had my NBME 18 215 approximating a score of 232 on step 1, the free 120 was around a 235 i believe and the uworld correlation chart I always laughed at because I was no where near what it said for 63%-234. In the end it was all pretty darn close.

 

REAL SCORE 232! (first time pass) if i can do it, anyone can

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

Best Anatomy Books For USMLE Step 1

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 262 – American Student

USMLE Step 1 – 262 Experience of Dr. Lewis Fourd

December 27, 2017

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 265+ – American Student

For those who are interested in score correlations, I received my score a couple weeks ago. I am an allopathic student with an 18 month preclinical curriculum. Flipped class, pass/fail, PBL style. I worked my tail off during those 18 months to master content for the long haul and to score well on every exam, not just pass. Prepped about 4.5 weeks, couldn’t imagine anything longer than that. Typical study approach, UFAP. Reviewed FA throughout my basic sciences from day one of med school. Likely did 3 passes overall. I did Pathoma twice through. Did Anki from day one for my courses, did Bros deck for the basic stuff (biochem, micro, pharm, immuno) over summer of MS1. UWorld twice through with annotation and thorough review of all answers. All done in 40Q, timed random mode. First pass 78% (final 15-20 blocks ~80-85%) , second pass 93%. Didn’t feel like I could master the UFAP material enough to justify looking at any other resources.

 

Disclaimer, for what its worth, I have already earned my Pharm.D. and am a Board Certified Pharmacotherapy specialist with residency training. Medicine is a second career for me. That being said…the pharm on my test was pretty darn basic, even without any background.

 

CBSE 2 weeks before finals of MS2 (mid Dec): 97 (>265) -didn’t think much of this. I felt like I had a lucky draw of questions I just happened to know

NBME 15: Baseline 4.5 weeks out 251 (14 marked)

NBME 17: 3.5 weeks out 257 (11 marked)

NBME 18: 2.5 weeks out 267 (9 marked)

UWSA 1: 10 days out 275

UWSA 2: 5 days out 257

Step 1 taken 2/2/17: 265+ (pleased with this, not sure I could have done much better to be honest, maybe guessed better on unknowns?)

 

FYI, I have two young kids at home that are a welcome distraction to this thing called med school. If I can do it, you all can too. Crush it and move on. Best of luck.

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

USMLE Step 1 Experiences – 259 – Sunder Chalam

Best Anatomy Books For USMLE Step 1

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 262 – American Student

 

December 27, 2017

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 260

 

Got my score from an early February test. Always appreciated when people posted this when I was taking NBMEs and stuff so here you go.

 

NMBE 12: 230 (2 months out)

UWSA1: 251 (1 month out)

NBME 13: 250 (28 Days out)

NBME 15: 240 (took right after 13 on same day, 28 days out)

NBME 16: 257 (19 days out)

UWSA2: 260 (13 days out)

NBME 17: 255 (9 days out)

NBME 18: 246 (6 days out)

Real Thing: 260

 

Did ~13,500 questions before exam (Kaplan USMLE, Kaplan Comlex, COMQuest, COMBank, USMLERx, & UWorld)

Went through FA & Pathoma each twice (2nd pass within last 30 days)

Sketchy Micro & Pharm is incredible (Micro>Pharm)

Goljan audio all day, everyday

Brosencephalon Anki deck is perfect for little facts you’ll never get questions about (and great for hammering in Pharm & Biochem)

Cram fighter is Godsend.

Good luck all.

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 257 – Dr. Akram

USMLE Step 1 Experiences – 259 – Sunder Chalam

December 27, 2017

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 243 – American Student

Just a little background: my school has a “compressed” pre-clerkship curriculum (1.5 years); therefore, I performed my core clinical rotations from January of my 2nd year until December of my 3rd year. I had 5 weeks of dedicated study time during the month of January, and I took my exam in early February. I received my results this past week.

 

The UWorld Step 1 QBank was my primary study resource (~100 questions/day), and I supplemented my studies with First Aid and the Pathoma textbook (I watched the videos in 1st and 2nd year, but I did not re-watch them during the dedicated study period). I did not study for Step 1 during my core clinical rotations because I was focused on preparing for the shelf exams.

 

NBME Form 17: 207 – January 2 [No Prior Preparation]

UWorld Form 1: 249 – January 18 [Day 17 of preparation]

UWorld Form 2: 247 – January 31 [Day 30 of preparation]

NBME Form 18: 236 – February 4 [Day 34 of preparation]

UWorld QBank: 67% (First pass through all 2,500 questions) – USMLE Score Correlation = 243-244

 

Final Score: 243

 

Hope this helps! Good Luck

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

USMLE Step 1 – 264 Experience of an IMG

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 257 – Dr. Akram

USMLE Step 1 Experiences – 259 – Sunder Chalam

 

December 27, 2017

USMLE Step 1 Experience of an IMG – Hard Work

Hi guys,


First at all, I want to thanks God Which with my effort and support of my family help me and carry me along this path. Do your best, and God will do the rest! 

I’ve been around a long time ago, i feel that i owe to this forum a lot, because it Encourage me in every step along my path. I feel so Happy because beside the successful of my USMLE step 1, I got more great news during the same week of my report.

I’m an IMG from Caribbean, which start studying last year, but I stopped and start all over again this year around march. 

I did Kaplan Books all of them, last year, so this year I started with FA and Kaplan Step 1 Qbank, them after finish kaplan Qbank, i jump into 1 NBME 5 to asses where i was… Got 350 = 188 which is not the score i was looking Obviously is just a passing rate, after that i went into Usmle World and Keep reading FA, and after finish it for about 1 month and half i took another NBME scored 370 = 191. At least was increase but not that great.

After doing this, i looked over my weakness area and review Kaplan Books of those weakness, for example, Physiology, Behaivoral and Neuro. After that, i went again into a New Qbank, which this time was USMLE RX… i did it for 2 month because this Qbank has 3200 Question, it is a great Qbank for people who still dont know particular points of FA or for people who are looking to grab the best of FA… i love it… hence is not that accurate as the other Qbank, but the only thing it is Predictable are NBME’s… Nothing else… dont be fooled… Btw, i also think that Your “guts” can tell you when you are ready but sometimes you can misinterpreted the sign. 

After i finish it, i took others NBME to assess where i was and keep readiing FA all the way…

Qbank Kaplan = 55 % = They predict 219
UW = 71% = They predict around 230+, this was bias bc last year i took UW, so it was not that predicted, that’s why i dont recomend people to do any qbank Twice if you are looking to predict your score, if you are looking to see how much did ya retain,, then yes.
USmleRX 67 % = they predict 219


NBME 5 = 350 ( 6 month before exam ) 190
NBME 6 = 360 ( 4 month before exam ) 192
NBME 12 = 390 ( 2 month before exam ) 198
NBME 11 = 420 ( 1 month before exam ) 205
FREE 150 2 weeks = 74% = 226 

USMLE RX simulations i gave 3
First 4 Blocks = 219 
Second 4 blocks= 223
Third ( 7 blocks ) = 245

Those scored cheer me up… But…

I noticed i was getting around 55-65 wrongs question on NBME’s, so i tried to get LESS and LESS as always looking over my weakness and After the first NBME i started a notebook where i was writting down the things they were asking me over and over again that really was smashing me down.

I did NBME 7 Offline, i got 45 wrongs, so i think that one i would get something around 210 = 450 but still hard to tell, i didnt give it online because i was confident ENOUGH to go for the exam, and if any NBME shows up with low score i will lose that.

Well, after a lot of study and up and down, my NBME was not showing a great score, but yet i was tired of studying so i decide to give the exam..

2 weeks after NBME 11 and Free 150 i didnt take anything else online and gave the exam… so 2 weeks before…

Reading FA all over again and my notebook… it was epic, i read FA in 2 weeks 3 times… and my notebook WISELY … dont waste your time with new material,, you wont learn and you will not need it… at this point you know everything you know… So you just need to consolidate those material…

3 Days, i decide to go for Highly Topics, So i study Pharm,
2 Day, List of forgetables which is here in the forum..
1 Day, Review my Notebook, nothing more… close the book by 1 pm, i ate something and went out to the mall…Arrive home around 9 pm so i prepared my bag pack and went to sleep…

DAY OF THE EXAM

It was so nice, the exam center was clean, people so nice, and they help me with every question i got…

1 Block, The hardest, i dont know if this was because it was the first, i almost cry… I pray God after this block, went into the bathroom and try to calm down myself and give the best to the second…

2. Was easy easy,,, i got it so fast that almost start changing question, but i was so confidence, that 12 minute left on this one… so review my doubts and jump into another break…

3. Was Average, I got it good, after i finish i got 5 minute left, review my doubts and ended on time… 

BREAK eat something and drink some Redbull…

4. This was hard, but still i gave my best… and get out of there… to EAT

5. Easy easy easy.. as the second … finish it… and jump right away to the sixth block…

6 block was HARD, but i decide to jump into this block right away, because i got 15 minute left of my break … 

7. it was average, i found it pretty cool and almost finish it with 12 minute left again, but i review it but didnt want to end it early because it was the LAST…

My experience on the blocks…

You will find some question HARD, you will not get any idea of what the heck they are asking you,, Just breath.. and move on… and you will find this at least 2-4 question per block… so if you calculate it will be around 15 question in the whole EXAM ( 7 blocks )…

So my advise, Take the break as you need it, but keep in mind as my center in Miami, i took at least 4 minutes in going out and in during the breaks because you gotta sign a paper whenever you go out and IN and they have to check you, the pockets and everything…

Question: Some of those were experimental around 10-15 on my exam…

I got question of immuno, pretty straigh forward as we are use to… Some was a pte with X pathology and they describe it pretty nice so you get to know what they are asking… DONT doubt, dont Hesitate … YOU KNOW YOUR STUFF.

*Micro: i got like 20-30 question
*Immuno 10-15
*Pharm shockely i was expecting around 20-30 but i just got like 7 question… this is my higher subject but they dont ask me that much…
*Neuro Around 5 Question that i remember…
*Hemato They asked me everything, they took FA and ask me everything lol… it was funny because some question were like “WTH” and others were too easy…and yet got it with and * in the HIGHEST performance…
*Behaivoral = 15 – 20 question for formulas, dont know how the heck i get it, but still i did like all the study , in total like 30 question… 

Interesting they almost rape me with this subject… they ASKED ME EVERYTHING …all the freaking formulas, all the study, etc etc etc… so you better understand Everything from FA… they will ask you,, IT was just me but it happen 
*biochem, like 15 question as some of my friend told me.. they will always ask you the same and the same… so I try to GRAB everything above page 90 – 117 on FA … because Qbank Kaplan and UW and UsmleRX always ask you the same over those pages…
* General Med / Integrations like 40 question

* CArdio / Renal / Endocrino / Pulmonology / They asked me a lot of Physiology concept, it was easy but still you gotta understand the basic to answer it…

My notebook helped me a lot.. because i wrote down on my notebook stuff like Glomerular Changes in Nephritic / Nephrotic. Pulmonology Curve, All Micro Graphic, All Characteristic to dif Staph / Strep / / Neisseria / Salmonella / etc etc … 

Also, All the formulas, so i was reviewing it all over again… alsothe most common change to the hepatic injury, neuro stuff, hemato stuff, i was writtingg down everything most common asked on the Question Bank i took…

Finally,

My score is 211 = 88, it is not that 99, but i study hard to get above 210, i was looking for at least 90, but IM SO happy for this score… now i have to start over to the CK and try to get 230+ so i can get into the program i want… 

Btw, people say that when you get out of the exam, you feel like you just failed or a weird feeling that it cant be explained… YES is true… but during the days were going by, i was like reviewing question on my mind and realize i got a lot of those question right, so i was feeling more and more confidence, but yet hard to tell where my score will be lay… so as a good believer, keep praying… 

There are a lot of people from this forum that help me… and cheer me all the way along the path that i want to thanks, i may forget somes, but yet i will name some…

BEBIX, Artoque, Guru, Heights, Sabio, Thank you guys… 

THANKS GOD for this… finally step 1 is behind…
See you around in the path guys…

__________________
Nothing is Impossible, the Word Itself says “I’m Possible”

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 271 – MUST READ !!!

USMLE Step 1 – 264 Experience of an IMG

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 257 – Dr. Akram

Best Anatomy Books For USMLE Step 1

December 27, 2017

250 – USMLE Step 1 Experience

I don’t want to waste your time writing paragraphs of crap I did because I think it comes down to some simple concepts.

1) Work hard–my motivation was this is a once-in-a-lifetime test. Other students in my class finished early and went to the beach but I can do that later!  No distractions! 

2) It comes down to what you understand. A buddy of mine was top 10% in the class (I am not), and he scored a 236 (which is good). Somehow he did better on tests during med school than I, and he did for the most part understand what he learned. But I feel like I really struggled with concepts more (I sat next to him every day), and the stuff in FA then became basic, so I just used it as reference as I went through Uworld, never sat down to read FA actually. Which beings me to

3) …I did Uworld ~2 1/2 times. So what. I don’t think that is necessarily the most efficient and I think I may have wasted some time doing it. I did it 1. once, 2. all the ones I did wrong, then 3. once again.
Then I did most of kaplan Qbank, tried to stick to “high-yield, hard” only–which actually gave me some pearls. 

4) I took a total of about 8 weeks just for these exams (studying for class IS board study). Our school gave us the kaplan prep course, and I went to it. For me, I think this was great to know how much focus I needed in certain areas, but overall optional. Barone was clutch. 

Good luck! I can elaborate more if you want.

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 271 – MUST READ !!!

USMLE Step 1 – 264 Experience of an IMG

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 257 – Dr. Akram

December 27, 2017

261 in Step 1 – Argentinian IMG

Hi everybody! My name is Nicolas, I graduated last year in Argentina and spent it studying for the step 1. I got my score a couple of weeks ago and I wanted to share the methods I used, basically because reading other’s people advice and experiences was tremendously helpful for my preparation and I would like to do the same for others.

First of all, I think that it’s important to know that we might be very different people with different thoughts, styles, weaknesses, strengths, prejudices, academic preparation, time available and even different IQs, but there are some general concepts and “rules” that I consider that can be useful for everyone trying to get a high score in step 1. These “keys” are widely spread through the internet in many sites and forums, including this one, of course, but I will try to simplify and summarize them here to make things easier for those aiming to this tough but perfectly possible target.

Before telling which set of books and other materials I did use, I’d like to highlight that our goal is not to use a lot of different materials or to end up reading some books over and over some X number of times (eg: First Aid) but to get the highest mark as possible in the real exam, and we can achieve that in more than one single way. This is important to know to avoid getting frustrated halfway when we can’t watch all Kaplan videos, read First Aid 4 times or repeat the whole USMLE World bank. I personally followed the ZumZum Method (the single best study plan that I found most suited for me) and couldn’t keep up with it, but it was the base from which I ended up making my own plan, with some additional improvisation, for what I will be always grateful with Dr. ZumZum.

Next, I will summarize in a list the best pieces of advice I found over the internet and some others that I could come up with during the study process:

1) Where do we come from?

Firstly, it is a good idea to take an initial diagnostic test (it could be Kaplan’s Diagnostic Test, which comes with the 12 months subscription, or USMLE World’s Self Assesment 1 and/or 2). If you can avoid getting frustrated by an almost certain low score, it can give you really useful information about where you are starting to study from and maybe which specific areas deserve the most of your attention. I personally didn’t do this, but I would definitely do it had I prepare this exam again. This way you can more effectively evaluate your progress during the process and predict more accurately when you are going to be ready to take the exam.

2) Where are we going?

This may be the most important step to make your study plan. You have to decide which score you pretend to get, or at least the minimum score so all your effort makes sense, and how much time you can and want to invest for that quest. Knowing which specialty you are interested in can be helpful to determine how high your step 1 score should be to avoid having trouble getting interviews. Although some specialties don’t put much weight in step 1 score (eg: psychiatry, the one I’m looking forward to ), a high step 1 passing score can’t hurt anybody!

Don’t underestimate the importance of clearly setting your target score and study time, in the middle of the study jungle it’s pretty easy to get confused and lose perspective. In my case I ended up taking the exam 2 months later than I had planned, with its subsequent higher risk of burnout, because I didn’t have all the relevant information from the beginning. So, I think that the moral is that you better have everything you can analized and decided from the beginning but don’t desperate if you already started studying and have to change something in the way. It’s true that it’s usually better to stick to whatever plan you initially made, but I recommend to be flexible enough to make some changes in your strategy if you have a strong insight about how it can improve your final outcome.

3) Make a list of things to remember in the midway

This is a really tough road and it’s important to always keep in mind certain “rules”. While you are still fresh it’s a good idea to make a list of things that you want to remember when you might be tired and confused in the middle of the study schedule. You can find lots of these key concepts at the beginning of many books (Eg: First Aid, Kaplan QBank, etc.), but I will mention some that were really important to me:

1. This is a perfectly possible project. It is also perfectly normal to feel exhausted and pessimistic halfway, learn to question your own feelings and pessimistic thoughts and think that what is happening to you also happened to many people who finally got a high score. I cannot tell you how many times I felt that I was bound to failure.

2. Remember that nothing’s more important than the final outcome, it’s perfectly fine to do things differently to the advice you get (even this one) as long as you can still get to your target that way. The most objective feedback you can get about it are your USMLE World Qbank score and the NBME forms; getting a high score in them is the best way to know that what you are doing is right.

3. Don’t delay doing question banks, it is strongly emphasized everywhere that all good study plans require making lots of questions in the random timed fashion. Start doing this ASAP, if I had to take this exam again I would start doing UW much earlier in the schedule than I did. I know many cases of people than despite having read tons of books, delaying the practice with question banks was quite detrimental to their performance. On the day of the exam you should not be worried at all about the format or type of questions in the examination. Doing practice questions should be an essential part of your whole study plan.

4. One of the most important things: ACTIVE LEARNING. Try to avoid passive reading or semi-effective study, your time is really important and you should also wisely spend it in having fun and healthy activities. Once you have decided to sit and study, try to keep in mind that everything ends up with a set of multiple choice questions, so try to conceptualize every possible piece of information that way. Paraphrasing, making diagrams and doing many multiple choice questions are some of the best ways towards active learning.

4) Choose materials

Fortunately, there are many excellent review books and other materials and you can find out which are the most popular in the internet. Try to think wisely what type of learner you are and which set of materials you can get the most from. Next there’s a list of what I decided to use and what I did finally use and in the order that I did it:

BOOKS

-First Aid 2013: I would read every section after finishing it in the other books and did 1 reread just before the exam.

-Kaplan USMLE Step 1 Qbook: After each discipline I would do it’s respective questions from this book (didn’t like it too much).

-Kaplan Lecture Notes 2010: I read Behavioral Sciences, Biochemistry, Histology Section of the Anatomy book, Microbiology and Immunology and Pharmacology.

-Kaplan lecture videos 2010: Could only watch Behavioral Sciences, Biochemistry, Histology and some spared Physiology videos when I needed it to better understand a specific topic.

-High Yield collection (4° ed): I read the Gross Anatomy, Neuroanatomy and Embryology books. I also bought the Molecular Biology one but didn’t read it.

-BRS Physiology: I really liked this book.

-Rapid Review Pathology: A must for many people, I liked it.

-Netter Anatomy Atlas: Just to compliment my anatomy study alongside with my personal skull 

-USMLE Medical Ethics 3° ed (By Conrad Fischer): I read this book a couple of weeks before the exam and loved it, but unfortunately I don’t remember answering any ethics question in the real exam using what I learnt from it.

-Bought Clinical Microbiology Made Ridiculously Simple but couldn’t read it. Please before buying a book think carefully whether you are gonna read it, I felt pretty stupid doing this (although I was forced to buy it with too much anticipation in order to get someone bring them from USA). Having weaknesses with a certain subject (as in my case with microbiology) doesn’t necessarily mean that you must read many books of that subject, you could spent more time studying it or do more of its questions and that could be enough to compensate.

QUESTION BANKS

-Kaplan Qbank: I bought the 12 months subscription to use it between subjects, just as the ZumZum Method recommends. In the end, I did 86% of the questions with a 75% of correct answers.

-USMLE World QBank: The single best question bank, specially for the last weeks of study. I used it as my main source of study for the last 2 months annotating everything I wanted to learn in my First Aid. I did the 100% of the Qs getting a 79% of overall correct Qs, and then redid the wrongly answered ones, having 2 weeks left to review the First Aid and take some NBMEs.

-NBME: I did NBME Forms 15 and 7, getting a prediction of 250 and 252, 2 weeks before the exam.***

-USMLE World Self Assessment (UWSA) 1 and 2: I took them 1 week before the exam and got a prediction of 263 and 265+.

-USMLE Free 150 Questions: Did it 1 week ago and got 94%, which would mean a prediction of 268 +/- 11.

*** I read that NBME Forms may underpredict “conceptual learners” as it is more memoristic than the real exam, and that UWSA and USMLE Free 150 Qs usually overpredict scores. Both things happened with me as I did around 10 points better than NBME prediction and a some points lower than UWSA. Anyway, with some margin of error they all showed to be acceptably accurate. In conclusion, make these tests the final judge of how well prepared you are to take the test!

OTHER RESOURCES

-There are many, almost infinite, resources you can use to compliment your study plan and you can find them all over the internet, the key is to detect which are best suited for you and make your own best plan. 

5) Once definitive, stick to your plan!

Even though there’s always place for some modifications, it’s really important that once you decided how much time and how you are going to study, you strongly stick to that. Besides losing time, the greatest risk of getting lost in your own plan is that things stop to make sense and you get in a downward spiral towards lowering your expectations or even giving up. There are lots of places in the internet that can help you to keep things in perspective and have a realistic outlook. Just try to stay away from pessimistic or fanatic concepts and remember that your own path towards success is as valuable as any other, no matter how many difficulties you may have.


Next days I will try to complete and add more things to this post, I hope that someone find this useful and please comment and ask whatever you want to! Good start for everyone in this new year and best of wishes in this exciting fight!

Nicolas

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

USMLE Step 1 – 269 Experience – Armenian IMG

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 271 – MUST READ !!!

USMLE Step 1 – 264 Experience of an IMG

December 27, 2017

USMLE Step 1 – 262 – Experience

First of all this forum has been amazing and has helped me a lot and I met a lot of nice folks here who were always ready to help.

Background: IMG, March 2013 grad
Prep time : 3 months 
Hours/day: 10 hours average
Materials: KLN with vids, Goljan with audio, FA, UWORLD, Google images, Wikipedia

Choice of residency wanted : surgery and only surgery

I did not to anything extra than what ive mentioned. What I did differently was :
Repeated kln without videos 2months out, went through images of important topics eg MS … Images included MRI , ct xrays histology, EM of specific cells. Whatever I thought was important I would go beyond kaplan and FA, but not too many topics… I tried to understand everything and memorize very little. Somethings that you have to memorize are mostly pharma and little physio.
Also be prepared to handle graphs beyond what you see in kln and Fa but be prepared with the graphs in them as well…. 

My Uworld cumulative 1st time 75%
NBME 13 1 month out (without uworld) 242
UWSA 2 weeks out 263 , 265
NBME 15 1 week out 261

That’s it guys … Its that simple and trust me you dont need to be a genius to score 260 … But you need to want it bad like i did and push yourself beyond what you think you are capable of.
If you have questions do write them on the forums ill be happy to help and please for the benefit of others try not to pm me just put it on this forum

Ps. I would wanna thank the moderators of this forum you guys do a wonderful job and also my friends here vinaya jd dr.kg, vita86 kovach and wish them all the best for their step 1

 

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

Dr. Anam Warraich’s USMLE Step 1 Experience – MUST READ !!

USMLE Step 1 – 269 Experience – Armenian IMG

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 271 – MUST READ !!!

 

December 27, 2017

Old Graduate Mom Scored 252

I am finally in the position to write about my experience and feeling so happy that can write as an old graduate and a mom. 
In short:

1. Study materials:

– HY gross anatomy
– HY neuroanatomy
– BRS behavioral + Kaplan lectures
– Kaplan biochemistry + Kaplan lectures
– BRS physiology + Kaplan lectures
– Goljan RR 3rd ed + Goljan audio
– Embryology – only FA
– Pharmacology – FA plus Kaplan lectures
– Microbiology – CMMRS
– Immunology – Levinson

Actually, I was following the Taus method and I think it’s great.

2. Tests:

UW cumulative 78% first pass
NBME 15- 254 , 1.5 month before the exam
NBME 13- 254 , 1 week before
I think that my scores didn’t improve because I had a minor medical procedure and also came to the USA two weeks before the exam, and had to take care of my child, so didn’t have enough time for studying at the end.
The most important thing for me is starting doing questions as soon as possible. I was doing UW 2007 offline mode, subject wise and Kaplan 2010, random, just to revise. I was doing questions almost every evening, one block at least.

3. Exam

Pathology, pathology, pathology! But a lot of neurology slides, a lot of behavioral and microbiology too. Almost everything except for embryology. I wish I could have known that at the beginning 
My advice, regarding the day of the exam is- first go through all the questions, and then return to questions that you don’t know and don’t understand. Don’t wast your time thinking about some equations, statistical problems etc. Time flies on the exam. Mark only what you really don’t know.

And good luck to you all!

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

USMLE step 1 Experience – Dr. Alnoor Akber

Dr. Anam Warraich’s USMLE Step 1 Experience – MUST READ !!

USMLE Step 1 – 269 Experience – Armenian IMG

December 26, 2017

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 253 – IMG

Hi guys, I just got my score report (253/99) and thought I’d post a thank you note for all the members and staff of this wonderful forum. You’ve been really great and have kept me going through hard times.


My prep stats:
Kaplan original 2011 – I am a member of the Delhi center.
First AID
Levinsons microbiology * love this book – I killed micro.
Katzungs Pharma review thanks @docsasmit for suggesting this.
Goljan – did NOT read except for my weak areas from NBME- then also too much time, I answered a full 3 questions which were only in Goljan ( ya I counted 😛 )

My score stats

UWorld – 71 pct
NBME 3 – 236 (3m before)
NBME 6 – 242 (2m before)
NBME 7 – 244 (1m before)
Free 150 – 87% (great correlator actually, don’t underestimate this )

I was too stressed on 18th night before exam : I POSTPONED it at 3 AM – BEST DECISION OF MY LIFE 
I felt horrible afterward and felt I wasn’t mentally tough enough to take this test. 

I didn’t TOUCH my books till the 23rd, the day before my rescheduled date. I revised FA and the night before had a glass of French wine, an etizolam (partial agonist BZD with short half life) , and talked to my first sweetheart .. either of em or the combination did the trick and could sleep 6 hrs – so thanks to them all

Finally, cheers and may you guys rock in what you do. May god bless u.

If this experience helped you, check out the following experiences:

USMLE Step 1 Experience – 256 – Dr. Ahmad Ramahi

USMLE step 1 Experience – Dr. Alnoor Akber

Dr. Anam Warraich’s USMLE Step 1 Experience – MUST READ !!

December 26, 2017
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