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  #1  
Old 12-19-2014
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Fire Thread My step 1 experience Nov 2014

Hello everyone!
I'm done and dusted with step 1
I gave my exam on November 24th and got a 242 and I am so relieved and happy!
It was 8 months of prep time.
3 months of Kaplan lecture notes with videos for all subjects except Patho for which I did Pathoma+videos.
Then started uworld 3 month subscription and extended it for a month later. In these four months did uworld first time subject wise, then the incorrect ones, then second time system wise, then reviewed random systems. I made extensive uworld notes in a separate notebook, except for patho for which I annotated Pathoma (I love this book! ). I tried reading FA but stopped because I wanted to get comfortable with the Kaplan information, as it all made sense, whereas FA info is not linked. It is more about important points.
In the last month I did FA thrice, gave Nbmes and kept revising my uworld notes and Pathoma.

UWSA 1 after first time uworld - 230
Nbme 7 offline 5 weeks out - 30 wrong(238)
Nbme 11 online 4 weeks out - 241
Nbme 12 offline - 27 wrong(242) (did this between forms 11&13)
Nbme 13 online 3 weeks out - 232
Nbme 16 online 10 days out - 234
UWSA 2 - 250 (did this along with Nbme 16 to simulate an 8 hour exam)
Nbme 15 online 5 days out - 237
Real deal - 242

The day before the exam I did not read anything, just revised some formulae from biostats and pharm in the evening. Couldn't sleep all that well in the night but I guess that happens to everyone. Did not let that bother me the next day.
Exam day - Took me a block to completely sink in that I was actually doing the real exam. The first four blocks seemed pretty okay. Okay as in closest to Nbme 16. But the post lunch 3 blocks got me panicking. Because I was very unsure of the answers. I just tried to remain as calm as possible and go with whatever answer I thought fit best.
I had 5-10 mins left at the end of each block to review my marked and incomplete. I marked about 15 questions per block. I got 3 questions on incontinence, like which muscle is weak and stuff. Got 2-3 parasite images from the Nbmes. Got 2 questions with heart sounds, recognized one and other I could tell from the question stem. Took 5 mins of tutorial time to check if my headphones were working and skipped through the rest. My breaks were 5,10,5,15,10,10 mins between each block.
All in all at the end of the exam I thought I had screwed it up but was surprised and so thankful for my score. I had low performance in Nutrition, Immune system and MSK. I have no idea what the nutrition questions were though. Goljan has a chapter on Nutrition whereas Pathoma doesn't. So maybe doing that would have helped.

What I thought I should have done :
1. Started the Nbmes sooner. Because they are different from uworld and more similar to the exam. The exam is more about being able to tackle the questions and picking the best answer than reading FA multiple times and knowing it by heart. So if you do them sooner you can work on tackling the questions.
2. Had a study partner/discussed more with exam going people/had a group. This will really help you stay in the groove and stay focused and helps to keep you going. Especially towards the end.

About the other qbanks, I did genetics from an old Kaplan qbank because I was weak in it but that's it. I dint do Rx and Kaplan because I felt I'd rather be more thorough with uworld than doing many qbanks. But that's just me. For some people doing as many questions as possible works.
Do at least Nbmes 13,16,15 online. You don't really get that serious exam feeling when you do them offline.
Pick the best answer and move on in the exam. Don't waste time over thinking.
Okay this has become quite long Just stay focused and give the prep your best shot. Hard work will pay off in the end. All the very best to all you guys! I wish you all the strength and luck.
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  #2  
Old 12-22-2014
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Congratulations for your score.

How many times did you go over Kaplan?

would you recommend adding something besides Pathoma for Pathology?
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  #3  
Old 12-22-2014
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Originally Posted by usmled10 View Post
Congratulations for your score.

How many times did you go over Kaplan?

would you recommend adding something besides Pathoma for Pathology?
Hey thank you!
I went over kaplan about thrice. And kept referring some parts of it later if I needed to understand something I had forgotten. Also, I made some notes in the lecture notes itself. And this is because I personally liked kaplan better than FA. Some ppl fully annotate FA and stick to it.
And for patho I think Pathoma fully annotated will be more than enough. Goljan was too vast and difficult to retain for me.
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  #4  
Old 12-23-2014
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I read biostatistic from kaplan and fa a lot but it likes i am never gonna understand it bcz in UW when i try to solve looks like something new !What do u think i should do to get this down?


Congratulations u finished a nightmare
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  #5  
Old 12-24-2014
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Originally Posted by Hamada View Post
I read biostatistic from kaplan and fa a lot but it likes i am never gonna understand it bcz in UW when i try to solve looks like something new !What do u think i should do to get this down?


Congratulations u finished a nightmare
Hey thanks!
Do more questions from biostat. Like from an offline kaplan qbank. And do the biostat questions from uworld again. First time it'll seem new. But the next time onward you should feel comfortable with them. Doing more questions helps instead of reading kaplan.
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  #6  
Old 12-25-2014
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Originally Posted by zh3298 View Post
Hey thanks!
Do more questions from biostat. Like from an offline kaplan qbank. And do the biostat questions from uworld again. First time it'll seem new. But the next time onward you should feel comfortable with them. Doing more questions helps instead of reading kaplan.
Yes this is a golden tip
i actually started to solve Questions yesterday and i feel that i start to know what's going on ..reading ll just waste my time
I am finishing last subject which is BS but dunno what to do next, i am thinking to give FA a second read to memorize (1st read was with kaplan) then read each subject like biochemistry in FA and solve bio Qs from UW ? What do you think about plan? Also When to give NBME? Any advices?

best of luck in future steps
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  #7  
Old 12-26-2014
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Originally Posted by Hamada View Post
Yes this is a golden tip
i actually started to solve Questions yesterday and i feel that i start to know what's going on ..reading ll just waste my time
I am finishing last subject which is BS but dunno what to do next, i am thinking to give FA a second read to memorize (1st read was with kaplan) then read each subject like biochemistry in FA and solve bio Qs from UW ? What do you think about plan? Also When to give NBME? Any advices?

best of luck in future steps
Have you already done uworld once? After my first read of kaplan I did uworld with kaplan again. And then I went for FA. Did you annotate your FA completely?
Regarding Nbmes, finish uworld once, then do incorrect ones and then give one Nbme, like form 7. Then do uworld second time and start doing the remaining nbmes with a week to 10 days gap in between. Start Nbmes atleast a month before your exam date.
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  #8  
Old 12-26-2014
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I read FA but did not annotate on it to keep it for UW
have not started UW just solved Kaplan qbank not all of them
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  #9  
Old 12-26-2014
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Originally Posted by Hamada View Post
I read FA but did not annotate on it to keep it for UW
have not started UW just solved Kaplan qbank not all of them
Okay. Since you're done with your first read, now will be a good time to start uworld. Take the 3 month subscription and start doing it subject wise/system wise/random, whatever works for you. And make note of all the new points. Doing that is tedious, but it will help you. So make note of everything. Good luck!
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  #10  
Old 12-30-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zh3298 View Post
Hello everyone!
I'm done and dusted with step 1
I gave my exam on November 24th and got a 242 and I am so relieved and happy!
It was 8 months of prep time.
3 months of Kaplan lecture notes with videos for all subjects except Patho for which I did Pathoma+videos.
Then started uworld 3 month subscription and extended it for a month later. In these four months did uworld first time subject wise, then the incorrect ones, then second time system wise, then reviewed random systems. I made extensive uworld notes in a separate notebook, except for patho for which I annotated Pathoma (I love this book! ). I tried reading FA but stopped because I wanted to get comfortable with the Kaplan information, as it all made sense, whereas FA info is not linked. It is more about important points.
In the last month I did FA thrice, gave Nbmes and kept revising my uworld notes and Pathoma.

UWSA 1 after first time uworld - 230
Nbme 7 offline 5 weeks out - 30 wrong(238)
Nbme 11 online 4 weeks out - 241
Nbme 12 offline - 27 wrong(242) (did this between forms 11&13)
Nbme 13 online 3 weeks out - 232
Nbme 16 online 10 days out - 234
UWSA 2 - 250 (did this along with Nbme 16 to simulate an 8 hour exam)
Nbme 15 online 5 days out - 237
Real deal - 242

The day before the exam I did not read anything, just revised some formulae from biostats and pharm in the evening. Couldn't sleep all that well in the night but I guess that happens to everyone. Did not let that bother me the next day.
Exam day - Took me a block to completely sink in that I was actually doing the real exam. The first four blocks seemed pretty okay. Okay as in closest to Nbme 16. But the post lunch 3 blocks got me panicking. Because I was very unsure of the answers. I just tried to remain as calm as possible and go with whatever answer I thought fit best.
I had 5-10 mins left at the end of each block to review my marked and incomplete. I marked about 15 questions per block. I got 3 questions on incontinence, like which muscle is weak and stuff. Got 2-3 parasite images from the Nbmes. Got 2 questions with heart sounds, recognized one and other I could tell from the question stem. Took 5 mins of tutorial time to check if my headphones were working and skipped through the rest. My breaks were 5,10,5,15,10,10 mins between each block.
All in all at the end of the exam I thought I had screwed it up but was surprised and so thankful for my score. I had low performance in Nutrition, Immune system and MSK. I have no idea what the nutrition questions were though. Goljan has a chapter on Nutrition whereas Pathoma doesn't. So maybe doing that would have helped.

What I thought I should have done :
1. Started the Nbmes sooner. Because they are different from uworld and more similar to the exam. The exam is more about being able to tackle the questions and picking the best answer than reading FA multiple times and knowing it by heart. So if you do them sooner you can work on tackling the questions.
2. Had a study partner/discussed more with exam going people/had a group. This will really help you stay in the groove and stay focused and helps to keep you going. Especially towards the end.

About the other qbanks, I did genetics from an old Kaplan qbank because I was weak in it but that's it. I dint do Rx and Kaplan because I felt I'd rather be more thorough with uworld than doing many qbanks. But that's just me. For some people doing as many questions as possible works.
Do at least Nbmes 13,16,15 online. You don't really get that serious exam feeling when you do them offline.
Pick the best answer and move on in the exam. Don't waste time over thinking.
Okay this has become quite long Just stay focused and give the prep your best shot. Hard work will pay off in the end. All the very best to all you guys! I wish you all the strength and luck.
Thanks for sharing your experience! I am done with my first round of UW (69%) and I got 228 and 230 on UWSA1 and UWSA2 respectively! I was thinking about taking an NBME after revising my weakest subjects and hopefully taking the exam by the end of January if I feel comfortable with my score of course! During this time what do you think I should do? I have just 4 1/2 weeks and I do not know how to administer my time! I am planning to do FA along with UW again for sure but I am a slow reader! Any advice?
Thanks again for the experience!
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  #11  
Old 12-30-2014
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Originally Posted by jpsa123 View Post
Thanks for sharing your experience! I am done with my first round of UW (69%) and I got 228 and 230 on UWSA1 and UWSA2 respectively! I was thinking about taking an NBME after revising my weakest subjects and hopefully taking the exam by the end of January if I feel comfortable with my score of course! During this time what do you think I should do? I have just 4 1/2 weeks and I do not know how to administer my time! I am planning to do FA along with UW again for sure but I am a slow reader! Any advice?
Thanks again for the experience!
Hey. Do all your incorrect ones and give an Nbme now. You'll know where you stand and which areas you need to work on. The UWSA scores are not predictive. Also, I feel doing uworld another time will help a lot. It might take time but It helped me.
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  #12  
Old 01-04-2015
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congratulation on ur score
if u please tell ur u world score
thanku
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  #13  
Old 01-04-2015
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congratulation on ur score
if u please tell ur u world score
thanku
Hey. Thank you! i got 69% in first time uworld. But I have to say that uworld is completely a learning tool.
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  #14  
Old 01-04-2015
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I have problems taking notes when i write notes in my FA and month later i don't understand what i wrote so any advices for note taking skills
thank you for your time
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  #15  
Old 01-05-2015
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Thanks for the advice. I took NBME 15 and I got 215 which is really frustrating for me I am going to focus on my weak areas and do all wrong UW questions and redo all UW over again as you said! I'm starting to think that I will never get a 230+ on this exam I have studied my hardest and I don't know how long it's going to take to get there! Thanks again for the advice!
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  #16  
Old 01-06-2015
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Originally Posted by Hamada View Post
I have problems taking notes when i write notes in my FA and month later i don't understand what i wrote so any advices for note taking skills
thank you for your time
Well Hamada, I understand. That is one of the reasons I made my notes in kaplan. When that happens do go back to the lecture notes and clarify your doubts. And do that every time you get a doubt, do not postpone. Because if you keep doing that now, towards the end you'll be thorough enough and you can read your notes fast. Also instead of writing every detail in FA, you can note down page numbers of the kaplan lecture notes you need to refer. That can also make things easier for you.
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  #17  
Old 01-06-2015
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Originally Posted by jpsa123 View Post
Thanks for the advice. I took NBME 15 and I got 215 which is really frustrating for me I am going to focus on my weak areas and do all wrong UW questions and redo all UW over again as you said! I'm starting to think that I will never get a 230+ on this exam I have studied my hardest and I don't know how long it's going to take to get there! Thanks again for the advice!
Hey jpsa123, i know it is frustrating, but this is just the beginning. Do your incorrect ones and repeat uworld. Then see your score. Then keep doing FA. I know what you mean when you say you've studied your hardest, but don't give up now. Like everyone says on this forum, step 1 is not a sprint, it is marathon. You gotta keep going. Give this your best shot.
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