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  #1  
Old 05-04-2013
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Arrow Step 1 Experience 216

Step 1 216
UWSA 1 219 (2 weeks before)

Before telling you about my preparation, I want you to know that I'm very happy with my score. My brother, a psychiatry resident, had a much worse score in his Step 1 and he still got accepted into a decent program. That being said, I have an upcoming clinical clerkship, I'm planning to do research next year before the match, and I'm going to kick ass in my Step 2.

What I'm trying to say is that you shouldn't get nervous if your score isn't as high as you want it to be. I know my score is somewhere in the lower middle, and that'll have to do. The average score in the Step 1 is in the 220s, not the 230s and 240s, which happens to be the case in these forums since only students with really high test scores post their scores online.

I took my test five months ago, so I've forgotten a lot about my preparation. I believe I took NBME 7 two months into my preparation and was happy to see I passed. I took another NBME a month before my test and I also passed with a score with which I wasn't happy. Apparently, the UWSA was pretty close to my actual test score, so I guess it is a very good measure of what you are going to score.

I took Kaplan Live Lectures in Chicago. It's not the best place for live lectures but, overall, I was very pleased with my teachers and how fast we covered all topics. Next, I was very nervous and wasted an entire month not knowing what to do. I did about half of Kaplan Qbank, the NBME 7, some Goljan tapes, reviewed some of the Kaplan lecture notes, and decided it was time to move on.

Next I switched to UWorld Qbank of which I scored about 70% in my first pass. Obviously, I was expecting a better score on my test, but I believe anxiety got the better out of me on test day.

This wasn't my whole preparation, but it's a pretty good summary. I also did a lot of flash cards: microbiology, biochemistry and genetics, and pharmacology. Regrettably, some of flash cards were not the best resources, but they all helped, specially the biochemistry and genetics flash cards.

I studied cumulatively five months. I took at least two days a week to unwind. At the beginning of my preparation I only studied one or two hours per day. Near the end, I was studying at least six to eight hours per day, mostly spent doing Qbank.

If you're wondering why I didn't do more practice tests, it's because I believe these can be hurtful near the end of your preparation. If you do badly on your NBME the night before your test, there's no way you're going to do your test with a peaceful mind.

If I were to do it again, I'd do the live lectures, with no studying afterwards. Sitting in a room for eight straight hours is more than enough for a single day. I would've started Qbank on day 1. It is your top studying source, and there's plenty of Qbanks online. I would've started flash cards on day 1, but not just any flash cards (Lippincott Microbiology, Lange Biochemistry and Genetics, and Kaplan Pharmacology). Finally, I would've gotten a study partner. Studying alone can be very depressing.

So I hope this helps some IMGs like myself. In words of Keith Richards: "You can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, well you might find, you get what you need."
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  #2  
Old 05-04-2013
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Default congrats!!!

your was such a honest post!! firstly congrats for clearing the beast with a good score!!!! you deserve to have partied hard!!! and yeah i agree with every word you say!!! loved your post doctor!!!

now a small doubt! how long does it take to do U world once!!!! i have my exam in july and i am just starting with it and i don remember my kaplan at all( i did it full with videos once!!)... gonna be done with FA now.. any advice??
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  #3  
Old 05-04-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coolbakes View Post
your was such a honest post!! firstly congrats for clearing the beast with a good score!!!! you deserve to have partied hard!!! and yeah i agree with every word you say!!! loved your post doctor!!!

now a small doubt! how long does it take to do U world once!!!! i have my exam in july and i am just starting with it and i don remember my kaplan at all( i did it full with videos once!!)... gonna be done with FA now.. any advice??
It took me two months to do UWorld, every single question. And by all means you should know the FA front to back. Read it as many times as possible.
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  #4  
Old 05-04-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjsanchezramirez View Post
It took me two months to do UWorld, every single question. And by all means you should know the FA front to back. Read it as many times as possible.
Are u saying FA was helpful in ur exams?
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In USMLE, “Any fool can know. The point is to understand.”
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  #5  
Old 05-04-2013
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Do you have your NBME scores around? How did you do in those?

Congratulations on taking the exam and on your score btw.
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  #6  
Old 05-04-2013
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjsanchezramirez View Post
Step 1 216
UWSA 1 219 (2 weeks before)

Before telling you about my preparation, I want you to know that I'm very happy with my score. My brother, a psychiatry resident, had a much worse score in his Step 1 and he still got accepted into a decent program. That being said, I have an upcoming clinical clerkship, I'm planning to do research next year before the match, and I'm going to kick ass in my Step 2.

What I'm trying to say is that you shouldn't get nervous if your score isn't as high as you want it to be. I know my score is somewhere in the lower middle, and that'll have to do. The average score in the Step 1 is in the 220s, not the 230s and 240s, which happens to be the case in these forums since only students with really high test scores post their scores online.

Studying alone can be very depressing.

So I hope this helps some IMGs like myself. In words of Keith Richards: "You can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, well you might find, you get what you need."
congrats doctor for nice score ,and thanks for sharing experience and nice quotation...
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  #7  
Old 05-04-2013
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First Aid was very helpful. It's not essential to pass but it's essential to get a high score. I regret only reading it once because of time constraints.

I know I got a 390 on NBME 7 and something in the 400s on NBME 11.
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  #8  
Old 05-05-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjsanchezramirez View Post
First Aid was very helpful. It's not essential to pass but it's essential to get a high score. I regret only reading it once because of time constraints.

I know I got a 390 on NBME 7 and something in the 400s on NBME 11.

Do you mind reading this and voting here? About your NBME scores and your STEP1. Seems the NBME underestimated you?

http://www.usmle-forums.com/usmle-st...-opinions.html
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