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  #1  
Old 02-15-2012
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Smile Doxorubicin Step 1 Experience

so finally i am writing my experience about step1 journey after giving myself a break to adjust its done

people on this forum were very helpful and made my journey less lonely while sitiing in front of laptop screen solving endless uworld!! so i think i have to share my bit for anyone who can benefit of it as i had reading so many experiences.

i dint know much about USMLE i had to find out through various sources, but even after reading when i went through the same process i had learnt a lot.
that's how it goes everyone has a different take on same thing, and so here's my bit

preparation time: from June onwards after i graduated till February

books used:

Mainly, Kaplan Lecture Notes and First Aid

qbank used:
uworld principally

Journey:

although started preparing for step 1 reading Kaplan during my internship, i started serious preparation after graduation ( battling and preparing myself of taking a drop and studying)
initial part was very disoriented. although i read entire Kaplan in 2 months but i dint have any senior to guide or any support of sorts.
it is then that i turned to forums and was best thing in my preparation.
i found a study partner( though we were more motivational partners than study) and we kept contact through sms updating of days portion done.
in month of October i took my NBME 7 and got 205. by this time i had completed uworld once, read all kaplan and done fa once.
i had initially planed on taking exam in Oct. so but obvious i had to postpone my exam.but postponing became chronic until i finally took in February.
in this postponing i wasted lot of money, confidence and energy to keep going.
December was a month when i was totally fatigued and no amount of break or anything was working . so i swam through that month without any output. i took a nbme 12 in jan and scored 200!!!!! hahaha...wow!
now i got fatigued of being fatigued and pulled back myself.i dint let the score put me down. i kept telling myself that it was the result of fatigue than lack of my ability.
so i sucked up frustration and focused on what the goal for which i was unemployed!!!!!!!!
i started exercising in morning, studying 10-12 hrs and took nbme after 1 week nbme 11 got 218...that motivated me.
by this time i had completed my uworld second time, fa don't even know how many times. i stopped uworld in Jan 2nd week as i had almost learned answers by now.
from this time till exam i did fa thrice and did 3 self assessment. in last uwsa 2 1 week before i score 224.

3 days before exam : i reread complete fa as a reading only not assessing or learning anything. did the tutorial on cd. that's all.

on day of exam:
my exam was scheduled for 9am but i reached early @ 8.15 and started my exam @ 8.30.
1st block i dint have extra time left to review.
2nd block 10 min extra time to review.
break of 15mins.
3rd block 10mins to review.
break 5 mins.just walked out and came back in.
4th block
break 15mins.had some biscuits and tang. no red bull i dont like taste atall.had some chocolate bar.
5th block
break 5 mins.
6th block
break 10mins.
7th block: was the most difficult. was tired and most questions were 1 page long!!! i manage to go through.
survey!!! you had to go through this after 8hrs!!!
and done!!!

i dont know if this is same for all but the entire exam is such a blur for me.i was like on auto mode. you just dont have time to think on exam or your sure to miss some question. hope i did good the score will say. i cant even say how many question i marked right or wrong!!! i dont know if others to feel like this.
hope everything works out fine:sorry:

i have never more believed in destiny as i do today.

advice:

dont dont dont postpone exam unless you know you havent reached your peak.

be confident in whatever and however you study. end of day the exam will test the concept not " first aid page no"

have a motivation /study partner. it is necessary especially for graduates.
i was fresh graduate just returned home after studying 5 years in hostel.
sudden change in environment and lack of colleagues around has a lot effect. never underestimate this fact.

the exam per say is not difficult but maintaining your positive attitude and goal orientation is certainly more challenging. we have passed all these subjects in med school. now just have to learn to integrate and apply in clinical settings.

hope my post is motivating for other people in same boat. best luck guys

fingers cross hope my scores are just as positive as i have learnt through this journey:sorry:
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Last edited by doxorubicin; 02-15-2012 at 05:53 AM.
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  #2  
Old 02-15-2012
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thankyou for sharing..i feel like im reading my experience...i graduated last year..but still haven't taken exam..lack of the environment is the main issue for me...how did u keep motivating yourself?

thankyou and all the best
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Old 02-15-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr_raw View Post
thankyou for sharing..i feel like im reading my experience...i graduated last year..but still haven't taken exam..lack of the environment is the main issue for me...how did u keep motivating yourself?

thankyou and all the best
hi Dr_raw,

i can get what your saying. but you just have to keep reminding yourself what is purpose of these endless hrs of work.

i kept myself motivated
-i had great motivational /study partner. i was just lucky to have found him.

- had a pinboard in front of my study desk where i wrote my positive thought that i wanted to keep reminding myself.

- i went through youtube videos of ted talks which i found great. they are not medicine related though some are. but for me i just needed a passionate person speaking about his passion for somthing to reminder overcome my hurdles.
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Old 02-15-2012
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Thank you for sharing with us your experience!

Sometimes I think it's "just me" but I'm glad to know that I'm not alone in thinking that uworld is a sea of questions I'm drowning in right now. The patho questions are just endless!

I laughed when you mentioned "the goal for which I was unemployed". Yep, that's exactly how the usmle is to me too! This is "the goal that is keeping me dependent on my parents right now" and "below the poverty line". LOL! I had to ask money from my parents for highlighters, pens, and post-its!

I also had trouble adjusting when I moved back at home after 5 years of staying in an apartment and being independent. I suddenly have curfews again at the age of 25!! 25 years old is a bit too late for "teenage rebellion" but it did happen all over again.

I think February is starting to be my "fatigue" month. My productivity has decreased because I'm starting to go out and have fun more often (twice a week). Studying can be tedious and I feel great when I'm out but I really feel guilty when I get back home.

It's really tough going through the usmle after all these months. I agree that the most challenging part in all of this is maintaining positive attitude and goal orientation...

Your post has really been inspiring! It's a relief to know that people were in the same boat as I am. The struggles were real and it's just not me...

Wish you all the best! Good luck in the next steps!
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  #5  
Old 02-15-2012
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Hi...i am sure u will score big.and real thanks for the experience u shared
.can u please tell whether the qs they gave in the step was more like uworld qbank,uwsa or like the nbmes??i mean were they as twisted as uworld??if yes how many of them were like those qs in each block(roughly)??Thanks in advance
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Old 02-15-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avash.nrs View Post
Hi...i am sure u will score big.and real thanks for the experience u shared
.can u please tell whether the qs they gave in the step was more like uworld qbank,uwsa or like the nbmes??i mean were they as twisted as uworld??if yes how many of them were like those qs in each block(roughly)??Thanks in advance
in a block i found i guess 3-4q were twisted and required time.
questions had similar difficulty level to nbme and uw usual questions..
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I am sure you did great!
And thanks for sharing your experience! I totally understand what you mean. It's a little hard to adjust back to your own home after living away from home for a few years.. I feel the same way now.. But hopefully I can motivate myself for the next few months like you did...
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congrats , wish u very high degree
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congrats on finishing! im sure you scored very well.

one question, ive always been confused about taking breaks.
how much time are you allotted and how does the 'taking a break' procedure work?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by khushi.chahal View Post
congrats on finishing! im sure you scored very well.

one question, ive always been confused about taking breaks.
how much time are you allotted and how does the 'taking a break' procedure work?
the same q , me too confused , what is the total time for break and how to manage it????
how long does it for the recheckwhen u go in and out ????
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Good that you are done with the test.Do not worry abt the results.you did your job....
by the way i saw you just did Kaplan and FA only.Don't mind i am asking you these Q's as my exam in 2 weeks..shld i just do FA? Did you do Goljan? are many Q's concepts straight from FA and UW?or do we need to refer to Goljan?
All the best
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Old 02-15-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rose View Post
the same q , me too confused , what is the total time for break and how to manage it????
how long does it for the recheckwhen u go in and out ????
total break time : 45mins +/- 15mins if you skip the tutorial + time remain in each block if you complete early

management: i was just as unsure how will i manage my break time. i just had one thing in mind i have to be alert when i am giving the block. so if you are in good pace and alert go ahead and give 2-3 blocks straight. but if some block makes you tensed or you feel sleepy/hungry take a break.
i preferred taking shorter 5- 10 mins breaks than a longer 20-30mins. the check in and out process takes 2-3 mins in total. so add that and calculate your break time.there is a wall clock in waiting area where you sit to take break.
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Old 02-15-2012
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Originally Posted by doctordexter View Post
Good that you are done with the test.Do not worry abt the results.you did your job....
by the way i saw you just did Kaplan and FA only.Don't mind i am asking you these Q's as my exam in 2 weeks..shld i just do FA? Did you do Goljan? are many Q's concepts straight from FA and UW?or do we need to refer to Goljan?
All the best
am sorry guys i forgot to mention goljan pathology RR in my experience!!! thank you doctordexter for reminding.

i read goljan RR almost 2-3 times in my preparation. i think its an excellent book and should be read. it clears your concepts of pathology very nicely.i had not done kaplan for pathology.

hey doctordexter, if your exam is in 2 weeks then you should just keep redoing the material you have referred till now. am sure you must be prepared till now.

questions were not straight from fa. question where concept based or direct question. i would say very similar to nbme and UW regular difficulty level question.

FA is just a review book to have all concept integrated in 1.
if you haven't done it till now don't bother. go through all your kaplan books many people do that. i just prefer to have 1 book when i am reviewing so i choose FA.

good luck!
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i am going thru FA and also goljan i try to read it by the end of the day,but too many subjects like genetics,behav scs and mol.biology are taking time to review for these i am using Kplan to review.
i cannot find time to revise kaplan,FA and Goljan.i need to revise for important systems.
how were behavioral science q's?were the biostats easy to caluclate?and how were genetics?i heard Molecular biology Q's are hard how were they?and also anatomy?
thnks in advance
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Old 02-16-2012
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Hi,
I am also dooing Kplan physio on fast track....do u think its a good idea to read it?were there many patho-physio Q's and i am highly concerned how to recognize RENAL AND BREAST pathology slides on exam
how was pharm? Do u think reading goljan side notes will do for the revision?
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Old 02-16-2012
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Originally Posted by doctordexter View Post
Hi,
I am also dooing Kplan physio on fast track....do u think its a good idea to read it?were there many patho-physio Q's and i am highly concerned how to recognize RENAL AND BREAST pathology slides on exam
how was pharm? Do u think reading goljan side notes will do for the revision?
be confident in whatever you are reveiwing ! just complete full read before. then you are good to go.
if you feel not so confident in pix then go through webpath. i dint have time to go through it though.
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