Dr. Phool Iqbal – USMLE Step 2 Ck Experience


Dear friends,

i have given my exam on 28th July and many people asked me what material i used and what was the exam like..

Study routine:
6 days/ week study with 1 hr workout routine to take out my stress
Hours not defined, sometimes I studied 8-10 hrs total, sometimes 4-5 hrs,
Because somethings are inevitable like some stressors or other works for which you have to get up and discontinue your study.
But consistency is what matters the most.

1) i used MTB 2 and 3…read it once.
2) then i took Gynea and obs lecs, made my notes of these lecs by dr Elmar Skala.
3) moved to uw online and made my notes which were quite extensive.it took time but was worth of spending.
4) did CMS series the new one and discussed with my study partner .
5) First Aid step 1 specific topics that complement step 2 ck


1) did UW once after that i dont remember much about mtbs…mtbs gives you the basics of this exam. after that i revised my notes and gave an nbme offline.
2) then due to some ups and downs, my study got a lil afftected but i managed to continue and started doing UW mistakes second time along with my weak topics and revising notes.
3) Ramadan month, less study with fast but still doing as i was having my extended triad going.
after second revision i gave an nbme offline again during fast.
4)saw my weak areas and that half nbme was given in fasting state, so i got mistakes which i should not make,i again started my revision of notes plus dr ali’s notes psychiatry part.
5) i have bought nbme 4, which i forgot to activate and lost it..
then i did offline version of it which was having only 2 blocks and no blocks in the rest folder..so i dnt knw what to say abt it..but continue to see my weak areas and topics from my notes.
6) did uwsa, and again lost one block due to internet issue and the exam got stuck, and so i did only 3 blocks online while rest i did while covering its answers with a paper sheet and guessing..
7) did fred as well.

After every assessment I use to see my weak areas and topics and make it strong.

my assessments:

nbme 6 offline: 3 months before exam = 18 mistakes.
nbme 7 offline: in month of ramadan and half block in fasting state where i get more mistakes than the rest = 37 mistakes, I guess the score is in 230’s
uwsa: 13 days before…lost one block ( 2nd one and thank goodness it was the easy one for me ),
Rest blocks 93%, 88%, 75%.And in that block with guessing got 6 mistakes
uwsa was of 40 qs/block.
nbme 4 offline= only 2 blocks, got 11 mistakes
fred = total 13 mistakes

Uwsa, nbme 4 and fred were given in sleep deprivation state late night time as I was revising my notes again and again and I was having time shortage for assessments. But hopefully it went ok.


EXAM experience:

i was having proper sleep in the days near to exam, and got 4 hrs before exam. i was feeling fresh.

i felt it was like UW…felt it not that hard although i got 44 qs/block ( not 40/block as updated guidelines said) and 43 qs/ block in abstract one and 36 the last one.
time management was ok, sometimes it was difficult. But I did all qs.

I was reading qs and feeling it like UW and Fred.
In my experience if you know the every bit of UW then exam is doable.
I took one break after 1st block. Then another after 2nd, later on I took after every 2 blocks.

Psychiatry, biostat and ethics:
Psychiatry qs were not difficult except there were few I was having great confusion as no option was matching strangely..hehe…anyhow I just picked what was close
Biostat calculation I got 1-2 I guess…
Ethics not much..
It was my exam pattern and people do get difficult part of these topics, and score great as well.

UW is the bible of step 2 ck. If you can’t understand or still having a weak area after understanding UW then add extra resource or discuss it with a mate, I use to have discussion regarding qs.

My exam was not terrifying to me but yes people do get tough exam and they share their experience.
i use to read other colleagues experience and gained a lot and I appreciate their effort.

TIPS for exam:
1) Just relax when you are near to exam, do not add new things, and revise what you have already did.
2) Revise algorithms and tables few days before
3) Get good sleep, eat healthy and do workout, as it relieved my stress.
4) Take small breaks, during each or maximum 2 blocks
5) sometimes i use to read qs from the start, sometimes when qs was long i use to read from the end and options and pick the answer when i get to know. its your strategy how to save your time. you should master it by doing qs in timed mode

Ups and downs are the part of life, don’t worry, have firm belief in God and stay strong
In the end it’s just an exam, do not worry, do your hard work as much as you can, do not hesitate to ask and learn.
Rest is your fate. You can give your best up to certain level and rest is on God.
I don’t know what will be my scores and I fear sometimes, but I guess it’s natural.
Remember me in your prayers.

Good luck

October 11, 2019
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