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USMLE Step 1 Forum USMLE Step 1 Discussion Forum: Let's talk about anything related to USMLE Step 1 exam


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  #1  
Old 02-10-2011
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Globe Step 1 the same all over the world?

Hey,

I was just wondering how often they change the questions for Step 1.
At a certain exact time are there different Step1 questions in Munich, Berlin, Chicago and anywhere else where you can take the test?

Do you guys know what I am talking about?

I am just curious:-)
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Old 02-10-2011
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Arrow Here's how it works

The USMLE questions are pulled by a computer server for every student taking the exam.

The server will pull questions randomly from the thousands and thousands of questions that are residing in the question pool.

The question pool is written by dozens and dozens of US med school professors (they change them all the time) and then relayed to the USMLE headquarter (NBME - FSMB) and then inserted into the question pool.

This question pool is updated regularly with new questions and modifications of existing questions. Something like 5% of the whole pool is being updated at a time.

So it's likely for two different students (anywhere in the world) to be presented with few similar questions by chance. But it's extremely unlikely (statistically speaking) that two students get the same exact 322 questions.

Every student gets his random share (portion) of the pool.

Note that this even applies to two students taking the test at the same time at the same center, each one of them gets his random 322 questions.

Of course randomization is not blind, they should have put some systemization in it, like for example all students get 35% of questions about pathophysiology, 20% difficult questions, 5% multimedia questions, ..etc

Did I answer your question!
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  #3  
Old 02-10-2011
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Thank you for the perfect answer.

So it might be possible that one student gets more hardcore question than another one. So there's also a lot of luck you need.
Or are questions rated before when they are in this huge pool, so that everybody gets the same amount of difficult questions? I guess not...
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Old 02-10-2011
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As I mentioned in my previous post, they may stratify your 322 questions into something like 20% difficult, 20% moderate, 20% easy ...etc

But, again, of course there's an element of luck, because a question that is hard for you may not be hard for others, or you might know a particular factoid that is being tested in a question while others did know this or that factoid simply because they did not review it ...etc

That's why the folks at NBME are trying to standardize the questions, in other words, they try to ask about concepts rather than factoids, in order to make the exam as fair as possible.
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Old 02-10-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lee-usmle View Post
As I mentioned in my previous post, they may stratify your 322 questions into something like 20% difficult, 20% moderate, 20% easy ...etc

But, again, of course there's an element of luck, because a question that is hard for you may not be hard for others, or you might know a particular factoid that is being tested in a question while others did know this or that factoid simply because they did not review it ...etc

That's why the folks at NBME are trying to standardize the questions, in other words, they try to ask about concepts rather than factoids, in order to make the exam as fair as possible.
shame on me I was just reading your last part very quickly...just read the percentage and thought you were only talking about the topics they ask you on the tests.

thanks
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