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  #1  
Old 08-06-2014
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Default My STEP 1 experience.

Hello guys!

I received my step1 score a few hours ago. My score is 227. I know that it is not a good score, especially for an IMG but I am satisfied with it(definately not happy) given how I felt after my exam

Total preparation: 6. months. (2 first months were very difficult because in my country medicine is not in english, so I had to learn and familiarize myself with medical terminology in english).

Material: FA 2013+2014(only new topics), Kaplan behavioral and micro flash cards, pathoma and pharmacology kaplan flash cards. Qbanks: UW and then half of kaplan. Also did 1/3 of FA Q&A in the beginning.

Scores: UW: 71% only once, kaplan (48% completed:75%)
NBME: 15 2 months bf exam 222(470), 12 1 month bf 234(530) and 16 1 week bf 243(570) and UWSA1 254(all online).

I took my exam on 7/17. The last 2 weeks bf my exam I was very stressed. I couldn't sleep more than 5 hours per day and although I tried to fix my sleep cycle (I like to study during the night and sleep early in the morning)I failed. The last day of my exam I could not sleep at all and because I did not want to loose my time by trying to sleep i decided to study my weak areas(neuroanatomy and behavioral-bigggg mistake). I just relaxed 2 hours from 5.30-7.30(but i wasn't able to sleep). I arrived at the prometric center around 8.30 and started my test at 9.30. The first block was a nightmare. It was 50% anatomy, very weird and long questions and I was guessing for most of them. When I finished the 1st block I took 10min break. I was shocked. I just wanna leave. The 2nd block was pretty easy and this made me feel better. 3rd block was not very difficult but in the end of it i started feeling tired and dizzy. During the last 4 blocks I was very tired and my most important issue was difficulty in maintaining my concentration. Qs in almost all blocks were very long. I found my exam way more difficult than NBMEs and UW but now I think that this could be 2/2 the fact that I was very tired...anyway... My exam had a lot of anatomy,physio,endo, hem/onc, and neuro and very weird ethical questions.(my weakest areas were anatomy, neuro and behavioral). When I left the prometric center I was in shock. I went back home and started crying. I was 100% sure I had failed. All these weeks there was only 1 thought in my mind:STEP 1 score. The last 10days hw I started feeling a little better and recovering from the shock bc I read in forums that the vast majority of candidates feels awful after their exam and I thought that I might have done better than I was expecting. And I was right!

To my great surprise today, when I saw in my score report, I did not do badly in anatomy or neuro as I was expecting. I fact both anatomy and neuro were above borderline close to high performance. Hw my performance was very low on biostat/epidemiology(!!) and behavioral and borderline musculo. I had star in micro and immunology and also relatively high performance in cardio, multisystem, general princip etc, pathology and hematology.

I know that my score is poor but I can do nothing now about it. I was aiming to score above 240 but unfortunately I ended up with a 227. I know that the most likely explanation of my "failure" is the fact I did not sleep the day bf my exam and my intense anxiety. I now think although I was performing well on qbanks and nbmes/uwsa I was not psychologically ready to take it and I underestimated the fact that it was a 8hours exam and not a 2-3 hours typical exam.

As for my plans, I am planing to apply in IM/peds and then do a fellowship in endocrine. Fortunately, I was lucky and I found research in the US for 2 years. Also, I have 4.5 months of US clinical experience(2 sub-Is in internal medicine and 2 clinical electives) and 2 very good US LORS from these electives and hopefully I will get an other one form my research.

Tomorrow, I will start my step 2 preparation and I hope I will not repeat the same mistakes. But now I know that I have to score as high as possible in order to achieve my goals.

Good luck to everyone and congrats to all the candidates who received their scores today!
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Cubandoc (08-06-2014), deariederaa (08-07-2014), doctor2k14 (08-06-2014), DrNewB (08-06-2014), eizou (08-08-2014), Hopetopass2 (08-08-2014), kumar11 (08-07-2014), mbMD (08-07-2014), Nijhum (08-06-2014), noha83 (08-06-2014)



  #2  
Old 08-06-2014
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I think that's a great score. I believe with your research experience and US clinical experience as well as LORs, you will have no problem getting into IM/peds. Keep up the hard work and I'm sure you'll reach your goals

Which resource did you use for neuroanatomy? I'm having some difficulty with it at the moment.

thank you for the feedback! Truly appreciate you taking time to write this for us all.
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Old 08-06-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doctor2k14 View Post
I think that's a great score. I believe with your research experience and US clinical experience as well as LORs, you will have no problem getting into IM/peds. Keep up the hard work and I'm sure you'll reach your goals

Which resource did you use for neuroanatomy? I'm having some difficulty with it at the moment.

thank you for the feedback! Truly appreciate you taking time to write this for us all.
Thank you my friend! All the best to you too!
I used mainly FA and UW and kaplan qbank questions for neuro. Only the last day of my exam I downloaded high yield neuro and studied blood supply from it and took a look at some images(CT, MRI etc).Try to understand neuro in FA and do as many questions as you can and I think you will be fine! If not and u have time you can study HY neuro, I think it will help you to improve your scores(I didn't have time to study this book but fortunately I performed well n neuro and I had a lot of questions in my exam). Good luck!
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Old 08-06-2014
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Congrats!! I can understand how stressful it must be for you in the real test. 227 is a nice score Thanks for sharing

Can you please advice about which books you would recommend for ethics. I have done kaplan 100 cases but do you think knowing all the rules would help solve questions in the real test?
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Old 08-06-2014
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Originally Posted by DrNewB View Post
Congrats!! I can understand how stressful it must be for you in the real test. 227 is a nice score Thanks for sharing

Can you please advice about which books you would recommend for ethics. I have done kaplan 100 cases but do you think knowing all the rules would help solve questions in the real test?
To be honest I do not really know bc I haven't read this book but I think it will help. I can tell you that in both UW and 2first NBMEs my performance in BS was very very low(had a star in low performance). Hw after doing kaplan qbank all BS questions and kaplan ethics videos my scores in BS significally improved and n the next NBME and UWSA Iwas scoring above average. In my point of view Kaplan qbank is much better in ethics/behavioral sciences than UW. I think if I haven't done kaplan qbank in ethics my score would be much much lower since I had a lot of BS qs in the real exam.I also had 3 qs in real exam regarding payment methods and insurance rules that I had no idea about the options... Good luck!!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fantom26 View Post
To be honest I do not really know bc I haven't read this book but I think it will help. I can tell you that in both UW and 2first NBMEs my performance in BS was very very low(had a star in low performance). Hw after doing kaplan qbank all BS questions and kaplan ethics videos my scores in BS significally improved and n the next NBME and UWSA Iwas scoring above average. In my point of view Kaplan qbank is much better in ethics/behavioral sciences than UW. I think if I haven't done kaplan qbank in ethics my score would be much much lower since I had a lot of BS qs in the real exam.I also had 3 qs in real exam regarding payment methods and insurance rules that I had no idea about the options... Good luck!!
Thanks a lot Ill do Ethics from Kaplan Q bank. That seems like a nice tip.
It must be a great feeling being done with Step 1. Wishing you too all the very best!!
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