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  #1  
Old 11-06-2013
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Experiences Aspiringdoc Step 1 experience (250)

Hello everybody,
This forum has been very helpful in my step 1 preparation and i would like to do my bit by contributing my experience with step 1.
DISCLAIMER: these are just my personal opinions, every individual is different!!
Duration of preparation : 6 months

Hours of study: first 3 months i was working full time so could give only 2-3 hours on weekdays and 6-7 hours on weekends. after that i wasnt working, so could give 6-7 hours everyday

Resources used: Kaplan lecture notes
Kaplan videos for anat, pharma, physio,behavioural
HY neuroanat( a must read)
HY biostats
FA
UW Qbank (2 months)
Kaplan Qbank (1 month)
i didnt do goljan, other HY books

How I studied:
In the first go, i did kaplan lecture notes and videos only for the subjects i mentioned.
My take on videos: They take a lot of time, not very helpful in actually solving questions, but they definitely break the monotony of reading step 1 subjects which might be very boring sometimes. Try to do behavioural videos, they do help.
After that i gave a reading of FA, of which i didnt retain anything!!

After that i started the second round of kaplan LN and made notes of some topics like nerve lesions and endocrine physio etc. in anatomy and physiology in a notebook bcz these two subjects scared me a lot.

I then took a 2 month subscription of UW , did it for 1 month but then i felt that some topics are much more stressed and some almost skipped in UW..although i must add that the topics UW covers are indeed THE MOST IMPORTANT!! So i subscribed to kaplan qbank.
The deal with kaplan qbank is that it definitely has a lot of good explanations, but somehow i didnt find real exam questions on that pattern. But the two good things about Kaplan Qbank were: it gives references to FA in every question, so u keep opening and memorising FA which otherwise is a herculean task to do. Secondly, it strenghthens ur KLN concepts. I would say that if you have a lot of time, do kaplan qbank first along with reading Kaplan notes..they can strenghthen ur base but dont expect them to be anywhere near the real exam as UW. I also took the kaplan diagnostic exam and 2 sim exams that come with the subscription. again they are not similar in any way to real exam but sim exam help to build stamina for 7 hours of the real exam.
So after the kaplan qbank, i still had one month of UW.. i made a notebook from UW qbank for important topics( i will give a list in the end)

UWSA: UWSA questions are a little weird and offbeat as compared to the uw qbank as well as the real exam. I gave the first one before starting the qbank( approx 2 months before exam) and got 260
i gave the UWSA 2 1 week before exam and got 265
i gave both bcz i had bought the comprehensive package which included both of them, but i strongly advise if u subscribe to the qbank only just do uwsa1..uwsa 2 is a waste of time and money.
NBME: Here comes the shocker..i didnt take any NBMEs. It might sound foolish and i wouldnt advise anyone of u to do the same.. my reasons for not doing NBME:
1) i did UWSAs as assessment, they overpredict, but they do giv u an idea of what score range u should expect
2) the fact that the test costs 50$ and doesnt even provide right answers for which u hav to google or ask other ppl on forums just didn make me feel good
3) I couldnt take the test any later than i did for personal reasons, so getting a bad score on NBME would shake my confidence
But, again, i would say DO TAKE NBMEs bcz its better to know where you are to give the test your best shot.

MY SCORES:
UW QBANK AVERAGE: 80%
Kaplan Qbank AVERAGE: 83%
kaplan diagnostic test: 83%
kaplan sim1 : 81%
kaplan sim2 : 84%
UWSA 1: 260
UWSA 2: 265
STEP 1 SCORE: 250

THE EXAM: (have copied this from my exam experience post)
micro, pharma, patho was pretty straightforward
anatomyne point i want to stress which nobody told me is that anatomy was heavily tested on my exam..n i didnt do very well on that cz i just read kaplan. so if u are earlier on in ur prep, do read high yield gross anatomy,
i read hy neuro which was sufficient.
behaviour science: as expected was very very bad, no source helped significantly, q were very vague, just made my best guess n moved on

physio: they give a lot of questions in which they describe a hypothetical experiment n then ask u which parameter will increase etc..some r easy, some not.

biochem: not many questions, i read it in a lot of detail, but there werent many q. but every form is different, u might get more questions.

audiovisual questions: 2 ecg, 2 heart sounds n lots of CTs , n pathology gross n microscopy images.

1 ecg n 1 heart sound was difficult, the other was easy, ct questions were ok except 2,3 weird q.pathology was simple.

first two blocks were tough n i was nervous also,,after that i synced with the exam n was more comfortable.
the challenge: i felt the real challenge was to manage time, keep ur senses intact for 8 hours, n to steer ur way to the alike looking options,these guys do a very good job to make confusing options, where u even falter at a topic u very well know.

SOME MISTAKES I MADE:
1) Reading anatomy from KLN.. i gave a look to HY anatomy, but with 1 month to go for the exam, i didn read it, but i have heard its a very good book. Anatomy questions were very difficult and i felt UW and FA dont do much justice to the subject.
2) Should have given an NBME, i took a risk..

FINAL TIPS:
1) Be confident: Use forums and other ppl's advice as a way to boost ur morale and not repeating the same mistakes, but only u know urself the best. Dont let somebody's high or low scores or anything affect ur prep or confidence in a negative way.
2)Read FA as many times as possible, i did it like 5-6 times. It may be packed with information thats monotonous or difficult to memorise, but i found it really useful for fast recall on the real exam.
3) the exam tests a lot of images: whenever u r studying look at the images given along with especially neuroanat or gross anatomy, pathology, micro, histology , physio,even pharma graphs.
4) the exam is not easy, but its definitely doable, but u hav to get your base right, they frame questions in ways where superficial knowledge just wont help.

LIST OF IMPORTANT TOPICS:
1)anemias
2)vitamins
3)glomerulonephritis
4)vasculitis
5)renal failure types
6) hepatitis
7)collagen vascular diseases
8)platelet disorders
9)neurocutaneous and MEN syndromes
10)acid base disturbances
Not a comprehensive list, just some topics coming to my mind right now.

Wishing everyone all the best and great step 1 scores
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  #2  
Old 11-06-2013
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nice job man, congrats on the score! Yeah i am kind of in the same boat as you with regards to Anatomy, ive only used FA and Kaplan. My exam is on the 22nd, so i dont have time to do anything else. I guess ill just have to wing it on the ones i dont understand or hope and pray i dont get tough anatomy questions. The funny thing is, i have done very well in my NBMEs, yet UWSA1 was totally out of left field for me and as a result, i did pretty horrible on it. Ive already paid for UWSA2 though, so i will take that.

Last edited by CisternaChyli; 11-06-2013 at 09:19 PM.
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  #3  
Old 11-07-2013
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Congratulations s . nd very helpful suggestions u gave us. I have a question .do u think I have time to go thr' high yield gross anatomy as my exam in on 31st jan ..i'm extremely weak on anatomy nd plan to work a lot on it though donot knw if it is possible.
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  #4  
Old 11-07-2013
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Default Congrats boss!

I love this! But I think u copied and pasted from somewhere becos I have read it before!

"i felt the real challenge was to manage time, keep ur senses intact for 8 hours, n to steer ur way to the alike looking options,these guys do a very good job to make confusing options, where u even falter at a topic u very well know."
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  #5  
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Thanks for writing this up!

How was generics and molecular bio? I have 3 weeks til my exam... I'm gonna spend half a day on neuroanatomy from Kaplan again but that's all the time I have... And just hope I don't get a **** ton of anatomy on my test.

Right now my goal is just to finish UW (1700q for 2nd time) and read FA two more times. Oh and do pathoma again....

I also haven't done behavioural science with Kaplan I just learned through FA and UW..based on your form, do you think that would suffice? (besides the ethics questions cuz everyone say how random those are).
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  #6  
Old 11-07-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CisternaChyli View Post
nice job man, congrats on the score! Yeah i am kind of in the same boat as you with regards to Anatomy, ive only used FA and Kaplan. My exam is on the 22nd, so i dont have time to do anything else. I guess ill just have to wing it on the ones i dont understand or hope and pray i dont get tough anatomy questions. The funny thing is, i have done very well in my NBMEs, yet UWSA1 was totally out of left field for me and as a result, i did pretty horrible on it. Ive already paid for UWSA2 though, so i will take that.
thanks, u r right. with 22 days in hand just be confident with watever u have studied..i wud say dont worry much about uwsa, their questions are nowhere near to the real exam..u can give uwsa2 but dont take its score v seriously..u hav done excellent on NBMEs and u will definitely do v well on the real exam all the best
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  #7  
Old 11-07-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashok1 View Post
Congratulations s . nd very helpful suggestions u gave us. I have a question .do u think I have time to go thr' high yield gross anatomy as my exam in on 31st jan ..i'm extremely weak on anatomy nd plan to work a lot on it though donot knw if it is possible.
thanks, i think u have quite some time in ur hand, it depends on ur prep with other subjects, if u r done with other subjects u can give it it a try,, but i must say anat is a difficult subject to memorise and HY is a big book..give it a try and do it only if u find urself comfortable..it might not be a good idea to read new material if u r not able to revise it in the end, might confuse u all the more. I suggested HY to everyone bcz i felt anat was pretty difficult on my exam, but everyone's experience is different..hope this helps!! all the best
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  #8  
Old 11-07-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sky_blue2000 View Post
Thanks for writing this up!

How was generics and molecular bio? I have 3 weeks til my exam... I'm gonna spend half a day on neuroanatomy from Kaplan again but that's all the time I have... And just hope I don't get a **** ton of anatomy on my test.

Right now my goal is just to finish UW (1700q for 2nd time) and read FA two more times. Oh and do pathoma again....

I also haven't done behavioural science with Kaplan I just learned through FA and UW..based on your form, do you think that would suffice? (besides the ethics questions cuz everyone say how random those are).
thanks. although i had prepared genetics and molecular bio very well from FA and kaplan, the questions were quite offbeat, infact thats the only division in which my performance touched borderline. But the thing is u cant do anything about those questions, just concentrate on FA and KLN immuno part.
FA and UW are enuf for behavioural, bcz the kind of questions u get on behavioural are not very clear cut to be solvable from a particular resource..u just have to make ur best guess and move on..and the important concepts are well covered in UW and FA.
doing UW and FA in the end is a good idea..try to revise FA inthe week before exam, it really helps. all the best
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  #9  
Old 11-07-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nsesereso View Post
I love this! But I think u copied and pasted from somewhere becos I have read it before!

"i felt the real challenge was to manage time, keep ur senses intact for 8 hours, n to steer ur way to the alike looking options,these guys do a very good job to make confusing options, where u even falter at a topic u very well know."
thanks,
i have written in the post that i copied it from my exam day experience..
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  #10  
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Default Help for physiology and pathophysiology

I feel physiology and pathophysiology difficult(especially CVS,Resp and renal)....is these questions difficult in exams?...which kinds of graphs are asked?....what to read to do well in this subject?
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Old 11-07-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
I feel physiology and pathophysiology difficult(especially CVS,Resp and renal)....is these questions difficult in exams?...which kinds of graphs are asked?....what to read to do well in this subject?
The questions are tricky but solvable, just revise FA and revise the weak chaptrs from KLN..i didnt get graphs in physio, got 1 in pharma though..
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  #12  
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Originally Posted by aspiringdoc View Post
thanks, u r right. with 22 days in hand just be confident with watever u have studied..i wud say dont worry much about uwsa, their questions are nowhere near to the real exam..u can give uwsa2 but dont take its score v seriously..u hav done excellent on NBMEs and u will definitely do v well on the real exam all the best
yeah when i got a 214 on UWSA1, after getting a 254 in NBME15, i had a major freakout , i had no idea what to do lol. But a lot of it was due to molecular bio and genetics, which i took some time to reinforce and which i will do again just before the exam.
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  #13  
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Originally Posted by aspiringdoc View Post
The questions are tricky but solvable, just revise FA and revise the weak chaptrs from KLN..i didnt get graphs in physio, got 1 in pharma though..
which are most important chapters in physio...i mean most qs from which system appear in exam?...
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Originally Posted by Short View Post
which are most important chapters in physio...i mean most qs from which system appear in exam?...
as someone who hasnt taken the exam yet, U world emphasizes Cardio, Endocrine, Renal and Respiratory physio..thats your meat and potatoes right there...
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  #15  
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What do you think for anatomy?one should do it in detail from KLN?or even KLN is not enough for it?is it imp to learn all the nerve pathways n muscle origin n insertions?what do you think about DIT?thnx
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  #16  
Old 11-07-2013
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Originally Posted by Irha View Post
What do you think for anatomy?one should do it in detail from KLN?or even KLN is not enough for it?is it imp to learn all the nerve pathways n muscle origin n insertions?what do you think about DIT?thnx
i did kaplan cover to cover many times, not v helpful..muscle origin and insertions nobody asks..for neuroanat HY is a very good book and easy to revise..i didn do DIT so no idea about it.
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  #17  
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Originally Posted by Short View Post
which are most important chapters in physio...i mean most qs from which system appear in exam?...
every form is different, so no generalisation is possible, but cardio, respi and renal and endo( adrenal, thyroid)are definitely worth revising.
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  #18  
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Originally Posted by aspiringdoc View Post
i did kaplan cover to cover many times, not v helpful..muscle origin and insertions nobody asks..for neuroanat HY is a very good book and easy to revise..i didn do DIT so no idea about it.
is video lecture essential for neuroanatomy or HY neuroanat will suffice?
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  #19  
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Originally Posted by aspiringdoc View Post
Hello everybody,
This forum has been very helpful in my step 1 preparation and i would like to do my bit by contributing my experience with step 1.
DISCLAIMER: these are just my personal opinions, every individual is different!!
Duration of preparation : 6 months

Hours of study: first 3 months i was working full time so could give only 2-3 hours on weekdays and 6-7 hours on weekends. after that i wasnt working, so could give 6-7 hours everyday

Resources used: Kaplan lecture notes
Kaplan videos for anat, pharma, physio,behavioural
HY neuroanat( a must read)
HY biostats
FA
UW Qbank (2 months)
Kaplan Qbank (1 month)
i didnt do goljan, other HY books

How I studied:
In the first go, i did kaplan lecture notes and videos only for the subjects i mentioned.
My take on videos: They take a lot of time, not very helpful in actually solving questions, but they definitely break the monotony of reading step 1 subjects which might be very boring sometimes. Try to do behavioural videos, they do help.
After that i gave a reading of FA, of which i didnt retain anything!!

After that i started the second round of kaplan LN and made notes of some topics like nerve lesions and endocrine physio etc. in anatomy and physiology in a notebook bcz these two subjects scared me a lot.

I then took a 2 month subscription of UW , did it for 1 month but then i felt that some topics are much more stressed and some almost skipped in UW..although i must add that the topics UW covers are indeed THE MOST IMPORTANT!! So i subscribed to kaplan qbank.
The deal with kaplan qbank is that it definitely has a lot of good explanations, but somehow i didnt find real exam questions on that pattern. But the two good things about Kaplan Qbank were: it gives references to FA in every question, so u keep opening and memorising FA which otherwise is a herculean task to do. Secondly, it strenghthens ur KLN concepts. I would say that if you have a lot of time, do kaplan qbank first along with reading Kaplan notes..they can strenghthen ur base but dont expect them to be anywhere near the real exam as UW. I also took the kaplan diagnostic exam and 2 sim exams that come with the subscription. again they are not similar in any way to real exam but sim exam help to build stamina for 7 hours of the real exam.
So after the kaplan qbank, i still had one month of UW.. i made a notebook from UW qbank for important topics( i will give a list in the end)

UWSA: UWSA questions are a little weird and offbeat as compared to the uw qbank as well as the real exam. I gave the first one before starting the qbank( approx 2 months before exam) and got 260
i gave the UWSA 2 1 week before exam and got 265
i gave both bcz i had bought the comprehensive package which included both of them, but i strongly advise if u subscribe to the qbank only just do uwsa1..uwsa 2 is a waste of time and money.
NBME: Here comes the shocker..i didnt take any NBMEs. It might sound foolish and i wouldnt advise anyone of u to do the same.. my reasons for not doing NBME:
1) i did UWSAs as assessment, they overpredict, but they do giv u an idea of what score range u should expect
2) the fact that the test costs 50$ and doesnt even provide right answers for which u hav to google or ask other ppl on forums just didn make me feel good
3) I couldnt take the test any later than i did for personal reasons, so getting a bad score on NBME would shake my confidence
But, again, i would say DO TAKE NBMEs bcz its better to know where you are to give the test your best shot.

MY SCORES:
UW QBANK AVERAGE: 80%
Kaplan Qbank AVERAGE: 83%
kaplan diagnostic test: 83%
kaplan sim1 : 81%
kaplan sim2 : 84%
UWSA 1: 260
UWSA 2: 265
STEP 1 SCORE: 250

THE EXAM: (have copied this from my exam experience post)
micro, pharma, patho was pretty straightforward
anatomyne point i want to stress which nobody told me is that anatomy was heavily tested on my exam..n i didnt do very well on that cz i just read kaplan. so if u are earlier on in ur prep, do read high yield gross anatomy,
i read hy neuro which was sufficient.
behaviour science: as expected was very very bad, no source helped significantly, q were very vague, just made my best guess n moved on

physio: they give a lot of questions in which they describe a hypothetical experiment n then ask u which parameter will increase etc..some r easy, some not.

biochem: not many questions, i read it in a lot of detail, but there werent many q. but every form is different, u might get more questions.

audiovisual questions: 2 ecg, 2 heart sounds n lots of CTs , n pathology gross n microscopy images.

1 ecg n 1 heart sound was difficult, the other was easy, ct questions were ok except 2,3 weird q.pathology was simple.

first two blocks were tough n i was nervous also,,after that i synced with the exam n was more comfortable.
the challenge: i felt the real challenge was to manage time, keep ur senses intact for 8 hours, n to steer ur way to the alike looking options,these guys do a very good job to make confusing options, where u even falter at a topic u very well know.

SOME MISTAKES I MADE:
1) Reading anatomy from KLN.. i gave a look to HY anatomy, but with 1 month to go for the exam, i didn read it, but i have heard its a very good book. Anatomy questions were very difficult and i felt UW and FA dont do much justice to the subject.
2) Should have given an NBME, i took a risk..

FINAL TIPS:
1) Be confident: Use forums and other ppl's advice as a way to boost ur morale and not repeating the same mistakes, but only u know urself the best. Dont let somebody's high or low scores or anything affect ur prep or confidence in a negative way.
2)Read FA as many times as possible, i did it like 5-6 times. It may be packed with information thats monotonous or difficult to memorise, but i found it really useful for fast recall on the real exam.
3) the exam tests a lot of images: whenever u r studying look at the images given along with especially neuroanat or gross anatomy, pathology, micro, histology , physio,even pharma graphs.
4) the exam is not easy, but its definitely doable, but u hav to get your base right, they frame questions in ways where superficial knowledge just wont help.

LIST OF IMPORTANT TOPICS:
1)anemias
2)vitamins
3)glomerulonephritis
4)vasculitis
5)renal failure types
6) hepatitis
7)collagen vascular diseases
8)platelet disorders
9)neurocutaneous and MEN syndromes
10)acid base disturbances
Not a comprehensive list, just some topics coming to my mind right now.

Wishing everyone all the best and great step 1 scores
Can I ask u what exactly did they ask in anatomy? My exam is in 15 days so I can't pick up any book right now and I have done Kaplan cover to cover. But if u can guide me what kind of things they asked I can try to look it up. Like muscle insertions or arterial or venous supply? What exactly was there?
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  #20  
Old 11-07-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
is video lecture essential for neuroanatomy or HY neuroanat will suffice?
HY neuroanat is more than enuf!!
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  #21  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by usmletaker2013 View Post
Can I ask u what exactly did they ask in anatomy? My exam is in 15 days so I can't pick up any book right now and I have done Kaplan cover to cover. But if u can guide me what kind of things they asked I can try to look it up. Like muscle insertions or arterial or venous supply? What exactly was there?
they didnt ask muscle insertions or arterial or venous supply..but even the nerve lesion questions which are so easy on UW were difficult to solve. It was heterogenous, so wud be difficult for me to pinpoint a single topic. I wud say u can compensate for gross anat by revising neuroanat, bcz there was a lot of it in the exam, almost all questions doable from HY neuro
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Old 11-07-2013
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they didnt ask muscle insertions or arterial or venous supply..but even the nerve lesion questions which are so easy on UW were difficult to solve. It was heterogenous, so wud be difficult for me to pinpoint a single topic. I wud say u can compensate for gross anat by revising neuroanat, bcz there was a lot of it in the exam, almost all questions doable from HY neuro
And what about first aid Neuroanatomy? I have done FA, Kaplan and uworld Neuroanatomy. Do u think It would be wise for me to look at HY at this time? I m worried it would make me even more confused since I don't have much time left. What do u suggest?
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And what about first aid Neuroanatomy? I have done FA, Kaplan and uworld Neuroanatomy. Do u think It would be wise for me to look at HY at this time? I m worried it would make me even more confused since I don't have much time left. What do u suggest?
i think that will be fine, just look at the images given in the beginning of HY if time permits..
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i think that will be fine, just look at the images given in the beginning of HY if time permits..
Thankyou so much
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Old 11-10-2013
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I know you didnt take any NBMEs, but were the questions like U world?
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I know you didnt take any NBMEs, but were the questions like U world?
many questions were like uworld, some not, im not sure whether they were like nbme or not..
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many questions were like uworld, some not, im not sure whether they were like nbme or not..
Ah okay, though i wish you had taken at least one NBME , so you could give us a basis of comparison. i did notice that NBME 15 was a lot like U world though.

Neurology in general scares me a bit, ive only done it from FA and Kaplan (i will revise it again in Kaplan this coming week). How complicated does Neuro get on the exam? I know for some people its pretty simple, for others its kind of tough...
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Ah okay, though i wish you had taken at least one NBME , so you could give us a basis of comparison. i did notice that NBME 15 was a lot like U world though.

Neurology in general scares me a bit, ive only done it from FA and Kaplan (i will revise it again in Kaplan this coming week). How complicated does Neuro get on the exam? I know for some people its pretty simple, for others its kind of tough...
neuro is not complicated, i got more pictures, which became easy to solve bcz i read HY neuroanat..i think kaplan and fa shud be enough, make sure u can identify structures on gross images or diagrams..all the best..
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neuro is not complicated, i got more pictures, which became easy to solve bcz i read HY neuroanat..i think kaplan and fa shud be enough, make sure u can identify structures on gross images or diagrams..all the best..
sounds good . Yeah i'll be doing gross images and diagrams this coming week...
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Hello everybody,
This forum has been very helpful in my step 1 preparation and i would like to do my bit by contributing my experience with step 1.
DISCLAIMER: these are just my personal opinions, every individual is different!!
Duration of preparation : 6 months

Hours of study: first 3 months i was working full time so could give only 2-3 hours on weekdays and 6-7 hours on weekends. after that i wasnt working, so could give 6-7 hours everyday

Resources used: Kaplan lecture notes
Kaplan videos for anat, pharma, physio,behavioural
HY neuroanat( a must read)
HY biostats
FA
UW Qbank (2 months)
Kaplan Qbank (1 month)
i didnt do goljan, other HY books

How I studied:
In the first go, i did kaplan lecture notes and videos only for the subjects i mentioned.
My take on videos: They take a lot of time, not very helpful in actually solving questions, but they definitely break the monotony of reading step 1 subjects which might be very boring sometimes. Try to do behavioural videos, they do help.
After that i gave a reading of FA, of which i didnt retain anything!!

After that i started the second round of kaplan LN and made notes of some topics like nerve lesions and endocrine physio etc. in anatomy and physiology in a notebook bcz these two subjects scared me a lot.

I then took a 2 month subscription of UW , did it for 1 month but then i felt that some topics are much more stressed and some almost skipped in UW..although i must add that the topics UW covers are indeed THE MOST IMPORTANT!! So i subscribed to kaplan qbank.
The deal with kaplan qbank is that it definitely has a lot of good explanations, but somehow i didnt find real exam questions on that pattern. But the two good things about Kaplan Qbank were: it gives references to FA in every question, so u keep opening and memorising FA which otherwise is a herculean task to do. Secondly, it strenghthens ur KLN concepts. I would say that if you have a lot of time, do kaplan qbank first along with reading Kaplan notes..they can strenghthen ur base but dont expect them to be anywhere near the real exam as UW. I also took the kaplan diagnostic exam and 2 sim exams that come with the subscription. again they are not similar in any way to real exam but sim exam help to build stamina for 7 hours of the real exam.
So after the kaplan qbank, i still had one month of UW.. i made a notebook from UW qbank for important topics( i will give a list in the end)

UWSA: UWSA questions are a little weird and offbeat as compared to the uw qbank as well as the real exam. I gave the first one before starting the qbank( approx 2 months before exam) and got 260
i gave the UWSA 2 1 week before exam and got 265
i gave both bcz i had bought the comprehensive package which included both of them, but i strongly advise if u subscribe to the qbank only just do uwsa1..uwsa 2 is a waste of time and money.
NBME: Here comes the shocker..i didnt take any NBMEs. It might sound foolish and i wouldnt advise anyone of u to do the same.. my reasons for not doing NBME:
1) i did UWSAs as assessment, they overpredict, but they do giv u an idea of what score range u should expect
2) the fact that the test costs 50$ and doesnt even provide right answers for which u hav to google or ask other ppl on forums just didn make me feel good
3) I couldnt take the test any later than i did for personal reasons, so getting a bad score on NBME would shake my confidence
But, again, i would say DO TAKE NBMEs bcz its better to know where you are to give the test your best shot.

MY SCORES:
UW QBANK AVERAGE: 80%
Kaplan Qbank AVERAGE: 83%
kaplan diagnostic test: 83%
kaplan sim1 : 81%
kaplan sim2 : 84%
UWSA 1: 260
UWSA 2: 265
STEP 1 SCORE: 250

THE EXAM: (have copied this from my exam experience post)
micro, pharma, patho was pretty straightforward
anatomyne point i want to stress which nobody told me is that anatomy was heavily tested on my exam..n i didnt do very well on that cz i just read kaplan. so if u are earlier on in ur prep, do read high yield gross anatomy,
i read hy neuro which was sufficient.
behaviour science: as expected was very very bad, no source helped significantly, q were very vague, just made my best guess n moved on

physio: they give a lot of questions in which they describe a hypothetical experiment n then ask u which parameter will increase etc..some r easy, some not.

biochem: not many questions, i read it in a lot of detail, but there werent many q. but every form is different, u might get more questions.

audiovisual questions: 2 ecg, 2 heart sounds n lots of CTs , n pathology gross n microscopy images.

1 ecg n 1 heart sound was difficult, the other was easy, ct questions were ok except 2,3 weird q.pathology was simple.

first two blocks were tough n i was nervous also,,after that i synced with the exam n was more comfortable.
the challenge: i felt the real challenge was to manage time, keep ur senses intact for 8 hours, n to steer ur way to the alike looking options,these guys do a very good job to make confusing options, where u even falter at a topic u very well know.

SOME MISTAKES I MADE:
1) Reading anatomy from KLN.. i gave a look to HY anatomy, but with 1 month to go for the exam, i didn read it, but i have heard its a very good book. Anatomy questions were very difficult and i felt UW and FA dont do much justice to the subject.
2) Should have given an NBME, i took a risk..

FINAL TIPS:
1) Be confident: Use forums and other ppl's advice as a way to boost ur morale and not repeating the same mistakes, but only u know urself the best. Dont let somebody's high or low scores or anything affect ur prep or confidence in a negative way.
2)Read FA as many times as possible, i did it like 5-6 times. It may be packed with information thats monotonous or difficult to memorise, but i found it really useful for fast recall on the real exam.
3) the exam tests a lot of images: whenever u r studying look at the images given along with especially neuroanat or gross anatomy, pathology, micro, histology , physio,even pharma graphs.
4) the exam is not easy, but its definitely doable, but u hav to get your base right, they frame questions in ways where superficial knowledge just wont help.

LIST OF IMPORTANT TOPICS:
1)anemias
2)vitamins
3)glomerulonephritis
4)vasculitis
5)renal failure types
6) hepatitis
7)collagen vascular diseases
8)platelet disorders
9)neurocutaneous and MEN syndromes
10)acid base disturbances
Not a comprehensive list, just some topics coming to my mind right now.

Wishing everyone all the best and great step 1 scores
thanks for sharing your experience with us!
__________________
I'll do it for you sofia
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