USMLE STEP 1 SURVIVAL GUIDE

Overview
‡ Licensing Exams ‡ USMLE Step 1
± Content ± Application and Scheduling

‡ Strategies for Success ‡ Special Issues

Licensing Exams

To become licensed to practice medicine in the United States, one must: ‡ Earn a medical degree ‡ Pass several licensing examinations ‡ Complete one or more years of residency training ‡ Apply for licensure from a state medical licensing authority

The National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME)
www.nbme.org ‡ The NBME is an independent, not-forprofit organization that provides examinations for the health professions.

The United States Medical Licensing ExaminationŒ (USMLEŒ) www.usmle.org ‡ The USMLE. co-sponsored and co-owned by the NBME and the Federation of State Medical Boards. Clinical Skills (CS) Step 3 . Clinical Knowledge (CK) Step 2. ± ± ± ± Step 1 Step 2. is a three-step examination for medical licensure in the United States.

. that are important in health and disease and that constitute the basis of safe and effective patient care. and to demonstrate fundamental patient-centered skills. and principles.The United States Medical Licensing ExaminationŒ (USMLEŒ) ‡ The USMLE assesses one¶s ability to apply knowledge. concepts.

The United States Medical Licensing ExaminationŒ (USMLEŒ) ‡ Results of the USMLE are reported to medical licensing authorities in the United States for their use in granting the initial license to practice medicine. .

‡ Step 1 is usually taken at the end of the second year of medical school.USMLE Step 1 ‡ Computer based examination ‡ Assesses whether medical students can understand and apply important concepts of the sciences basic to the practice of medicine. .

USMLE Step 2 ‡ A two step examination that assesses whether students can apply medical knowledge. and understanding of clinical science essential for the provision of patient care under supervision and includes emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention. skills. .

.USMLE Step 2 Clinical Knowledge ‡ A computer based exam consisting of multiple-choice questions that focus on the principles of clinical science that are deemed important for the practice of medicine under supervision in postgraduate training.

perform physical examinations.USMLE Step 2 Clinical Skills ‡ Uses standardized patients to test one¶s ability to gather information from patients. and communicate findings to patients and colleagues. ‡ Usually taken during the fourth year ‡ Five test centers in the United States .

‡ Step 3 is usually taken during or after the first year of postgraduate residency training. .USMLE Step 3 ‡ A computer based exam that assesses whether medical school graduates can apply the medical knowledge and understanding of biomedical and clinical science considered essential for the unsupervised practice of medicine.

UMMSM Requirements ‡ Students must pass Step 1 for promotion to the third year ‡ Students must take Step 2 CS and CK as a condition for graduation ± Passing Step 2 CS and CK is not a requirement for graduation .

USMLE Step 1 .

prometric.org ‡ NBME ± www.com .Important Websites ‡ USMLE ± www.usmle.nbme.org ‡ Prometric Test Centers ± www.

usmle.html .org/General_Information/bulletin/2009.2009 USMLE Bulletin http://www.

and aging. genetics. such as nutrition. .Step 1: Content ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Anatomy Behavioral sciences Biochemistry Microbiology Pathology Pharmacology Physiology Interdisciplinary topics.

Step 1: Content ‡ Classifies test items along two dimensions. occupational and environmental considerations . cultural. system and process ‡ System ± 40%±50% General principles ± 50%±60% Individual organ systems ‡ Process ± ± ± ± 30%±50% Normal structure and function 30%±50% Abnormal processes 15%±25% Principles of therapeutics 10%±20% Psychosocial.

divided into seven 60minute blocks. . ‡ Step 1 consists of multiple-choice questions designed to measure basic science knowledge.Step 1: Format ‡ Step 1 has approximately 350 multiplechoice test items. administered in one eighthour testing session.

Step 1: Format ‡ Some questions test the examinee's fund of knowledge ‡ The majority of questions require the examinee to: ± interpret graphic and tabular material ± to identify gross and microscopic pathologic and normal specimens. ± to solve problems through application of basic science principles .

‡ Some questions involve interpretation of graphic or pictorial materials. ‡ Examinees are required to select the best answer to the question. ‡ Other options may be partially correct. ‡ Items consist of a statement or question followed by three to eleven response options arranged in alphabetical or logical order. .Step 1: Format ‡ Step 1 includes only single one best answer test questions. but there is only ONE BEST answer.

± The three-digit score ‡ The minimum passing score is 185. .S medical schools is in the range of 200 to 220 (SD +/.Step 1: Reporting ‡ The number of test items you answer correctly is converted to two equivalent scores. ‡ Is used in score reporting because some medical licensing authorities require a "passing score of 75.20) ± The two-digit score ‡ Is derived from the three-digit score and is not a percentage score. ‡ The mean score for first-time examinees from accredited U." ‡ A score of 75 always corresponds to the minimum passing score.

org/General_Information/bulletin/2009. Receive a Scheduling Permit verifying your eligibility and authorizing you to schedule the examination .html 2.Application Process 1. Review the 2009 USMLE Bulletin http://www.usmle. Complete your application materials and submit them online at www.org ‡ Request a 3 month eligibility period 3.nbme.

Take the test . On the scheduled test date and at the scheduled time. 6.com 5. Follow the instructions on your Scheduling Permit to schedule your test date at a Prometric Test Center at www.prometric. bring to the test center your Scheduling Permit and the required identification.Application Process 4.

2009 Fee = $495 .

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Strategies for Success Game Plan ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Time Management Resource Management Study Strategy Test-Taking Skills .

Strategies for Success Game Plan: Recommendations ‡ Read all info on the USMLE website ‡ Familiarize yourself with content of exam ‡ Once you develop a schedule and study strategy« stick to it! ‡ Don¶t procrastinate ‡ Most of all« .

Strategies for Success Game Plan: Recommendations ‡ Don¶t distress « De-stress!!! .

Strategies for Success Time Management ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Prolonged study  better retention Develop daily schedule Keep reasonable study periods Set aside time to ³decompress´ Don¶t forget fundamentals of maintaining health and wellness .

Strategies for Success Resource Management ‡ You can¶t review it all ± so stick with what has worked for you! ± ± ± ± ± ± Class notes Videos Textbooks Board Review Books On-line materials Tutors .

Strategies for Success Resource Management ‡ USMLE Prep Courses ± Kaplan ± Princeton Review ± Falcon Review ± USMLE World ± UMKC: Institute for Professional Preparation .

Strategies for Success Resource Management ‡ USMLE Study Guides ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± First Aid USMLE Step 1 USMLE Step 1 Secrets High-Yield Comprehensive USMLE Step 1 Review Underground Clinical Vignettes USMLE Step 1 BSS: Body Systems Review I USMLE Step 1 Recall: Buzzwords for Boards Rypins' Basic Sciences Review Kaplan USMLE Step 1 Home Study Program Rapid Review Series: USMLE Step 1 Deja Review: USMLE Step 1 Essentials Cracking the Boards: USMLE Step 1 Board Simulator: Normal and Abnormal Processes Laughing Your Way to Passing the USMLE Step-Up BSS: General Principles in the Basic Sciences Rypins' Q&A for Basic Sciences Review Blueprints Q&A USMLE Step 1 PreTest: Clinical Vignettes USMLE Step 1 USMLE Step 1 Made Ridiculously Simple PreTest Self-Assessment and Review Rapid Preparation for the USMLE Step 1 Lange Practice Tests for the USMLE Step 1 Research & Education Assn: USMLE Step 1 Lange Q&A: USMLE Step 1 Appleton & Lange Outline Review for USMLE Step 1 Laughing Your Way to Passing the USMLE .

Not Hard ‡ You can¶t know everything! ‡ Ask yourself. at this point in your career: ± What is vital information? ± What is recall information? ± What is ³forget it´ information? .Strategies for Success Study Strategy: Study Smart.

Strategies for Success Study Strategy: Study Smart. Not Hard ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Be an active learner Use visual elements where possible Pick out relevant information Look for overlaps between subject areas Write questions rather than notes Use study groups« wisely! Assess ± study ± reassess .

before and after the Transition Block .Strategies for Success Test-Taking Skills: Practice Exams ‡ NBME Comprehensive Basic Science Exams (free) ± this spring.

usmle.html ‡ The software has over 100 practice test items and a software tutorial ‡ Cost = Free .Strategies for Success Test-Taking Skills: Practice Exams ‡ USMLE Step 1 Orientation and Practice Materials ± http://www.org/Orientation/2009/menu.

you will receive a printed percent correct score ‡ Cost = $42 . ‡ When you complete the session.org/CBTPSRegistrationWeb/jsp/usmle_CBTP S_registration.jsp ‡ The Practice Session is a maximum of 3.nbme.Strategies for Success Test-Taking Skills: Practice Exams ‡ USMLE ± Computer Based Testing (CBT) practice session at the Prometric Test Center ± https://apps.5 hours and is divided into three 1-hour blocks of 50 multiple-choice test items each.

50 questions per block.edu/ipp/cbt.Strategies for Success Test-Taking Skills: Practice Exams ‡ University of Missouri .umkc. just like the USMLE ± A comprehensive diagnostic report is produced to help the student focus his or her study time for maximum effectiveness . The test. timed exam ± Provides a realistic day of testing. requires up to eight hours for completion. once begun.asp ‡ Diagnostic Exams (2) = $45 each ± The output from this test will assist in pinpointing weaknesses and strengths as you prepare for the exam ‡ Mock Board Cost = $45 ± Seven blocks.Kansas City (UMKC) Computer Based Tests ± http://www.

org/programs-services/medical-students/sas/index. 50 items each. profiles indicate relative strengths and weaknesses ± Profiles similar to those Step 1 candidates receive ± Score interpretation guide provides approximate Step 1 corresponding total score to assessment score ‡ Cost = $45 .nbme.Strategies for Success Test-Taking Skills: Practice Exams ‡ NBME . up to one hour to complete each section ± Self-Paced: four sections. up to four hours to complete each section ‡ Immediate feedback.Comprehensive Basic Science Self-Assessment http://www. 50 items each.html ± Standard-Paced: four sections.

Strategies for Success Handling ³One best answer´ questions ‡ Read each question carefully and understand what is being asked. ± alternatively. . read each option carefully and eliminate those that are clearly incorrect. ± of the remaining options. select the one that is most correct. ‡ Try to answer the question first. then look at the option list. ‡ If unsure about an answer« guess!!! ± unanswered questions are automatically counted as wrong answers.

‡ SCAN for trigger phrases or words. ‡ DON¶T spend too much time on an individual question. If you don¶t know it when you see it. you¶re probably not going to get it later. ‡ NEVER CHANGE your answer. .Strategies for Success Handling ³One best answer´ questions ‡ DON¶T SKIP questions. ‡ GUESS consistently.

Strategies for Success Preparing for the Day of the Test ‡ Decompress a few days before the exam ‡ Check out the test center / confirm your test date ‡ Get all of your papers in order ‡ Get a good night¶s rest .

. ‡ Performing poorly on mock exams ‡ Thinking you can¶t fail ‡ Thinking you can¶t pass ‡ Not putting in the time / effort to prepare. SAT).Risks for Failure ‡ Consistently marginal / poor academic performance during the first two years of medical school ‡ Prior history of problems with board type exams (MCAT.

usmle.html ‡ Irregular behavior ‡ When things go wrong .Special Issues ‡ The Seven Year rule ‡ Testing accommodations ± http://www.org/Test_Accommodations/test_acc ommodations.

practice Take care of yourself . practice. not hard! Manage resources Practice.Summary: Strategies for Success ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Game Plan Manage Time Wisely Study smart.

USMLE Step 1 Mean Scores: 2004 .2008 .

USMLE Step 1 Pass Rates 2004 .2008 .

YOU CAN DO IT! .

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