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  #1  
Old 04-14-2011
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Show Teeth Got my score yesterday!

Got my score yesterday, exactly the third Wednesday after the Wednesday that followed my exam date (03/22/11), at 10:36 am Easter Time.

I'm very happy with the results 99 (261) , and just wanted to passed by and thank everyone in this forum and contribute by posting my study plan and impressions.

My Study Plan was as follows:
I studied 8-12 hours everyday (only 4-6 on Sundays) very consistently. My suggestion is take some breaks, including some weekends off when you feel burned out (did this one or twice during my prep).
In my opinion, you should stop working if possible. I did overnight shifts two or three times per week which I think possibly affected my performance due to chronic sleep deprivation. But in my case, I was able to study and do a few blocks of questions during work because I worked as a polysomnography technician.

1. Kaplan Lecture Notes and Videos: my recommendation with this is do it as fast as you can. Understand every concept, but in my opinion you do not need to memorize everything (I didn't), but definitively understand it. Also read Microbiology Made Ridiculously Simple (good images that will stick in your head) at that time along with Kaplan Micro.

2. Kaplan Qbank: did about 25% of it when I was finishing reading Kaplan. In my opinion, not essential but overall good.

3. FA: in my opinion, the highest yield book that I used. 1st read. Also kind of reviewed Kaplan Lecture Notes again at the same time, to annotate everything I thought was important and lacking in FA (use tiny handwriting, as you will need more space for notes later). The idea is to make FA your primary book. Never opened Kaplan books again.

4. DIT: very good program overall. Great if you need to reinforce your pharmacology and they definitively make you memorize a lot of HY concepts and topics. They make you go through FA entirely, so this counted as the 2nd read.

5. FA: Quickly read first aid again before entering UWorld.

6. USMLE World: best learning tool ever. This must be done in random, timed, non-specific subjects, non-tutorial and with complete 46-Q blocks. Do NOT make the mistake of doing it by subject or tutorial. This is important because the final score is a good predictor of your performance in the real deal. Very similar questions to real test, but way harder. The idea is to get over prepared.

---- Now here is when everything went wrong for me.... I was supposed to take the exam end of January this year, just after finishing UWorld. Well guess what? I got my Form 186 rejected twice!!! I had to wait 1 month every time it got rejected and ended up receiving my permit in March. Terrible experience. So my recommendation: apply EARLY, at least 5 months.
So I had about two months added to my prep and I used them to review a few additional sources such as High Yield Molecular Biology (just a few topics) and Goljan audios (in my opinion, not that high yield, but if you are deficient in path go ahead and do it).
----
Once I received my permit, I took online NBME 7 and booked my test 10 days later. DO NOT take offline NBME. The key answers are totally wrong. I don't know who did that but they are wrong, so don't make that mistake or you will get confused.

This allowed me time to:

7. FA: last read before exam. Probably what helped me the most as I had all my Kaplan, DIT and Uworld annotations in it. At the same time I annotated every piece of information that I wans't familiar with in a sheet of paper and reviewed it the day before the exam.

8. Webpath: also very high yield before the exam. Went through all neuroanatomy slides and some electron-microscopy slides.

Summarizing Scores:
Qbank: 66%, in random, timed, not subject-wise, only 25% of it.
UWorld: 77% in random, timed, not subject-wise, did 100% and reviewed some of the incorrect.
UWorld SA1: 254, did it at 50% of the qbank.
UWorld SA1: 264, did it at 100% of the qbank.
NBME 7: 258 (660)

Day before the test:
Reviewed some of my notes. Couldn't stop reading until 8:00 pm. Had a light dinner, watch a movie and took a relaxing tea which I knew would help me relieve the anxiety. Had some trouble falling asleep but eventually did at ~11:00 pm.

Test day:
Got there really early to avoid traffic and get a parking space. People at Prometric center were really nice. Blocks went smoothly. Took breaks between every block. If you are addicted to coffee like me, beware that there might not be a coffee machine available. In my case it was broken, so not getting my boost after lunch REALLY affected me in the 5th block. I was very sleepy.
Overall, I felt confident. It was NOT EASY, but I felt well prepared. About 80% were easy for me. I marked between 5-8 questions per block that either I wanted to read again or I had no clue (1-3 per block). Fortunately, I had between 10-20 minutes left in every block. I trained myself during UW for this. It's what I like to call the "30-30" rule: be at question 30 by minute 30. This allowed me plenty of time in the test to not only review those marked questions, but even all questions.

FINAL SCORE: 99 (261)

Final words: exam is very doable. If you follow a similar study plan, which is a working formula, you will get over-prepared for 80% of the exam content, and will feel confident during the test. Get a great study partner (thanks dude!) and be consistent. This has been a life-changing journey for me and I'm sure will be the same for you. GOOD LUCK!
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  #2  
Old 04-14-2011
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Congratulations! Thats an awesome score!
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  #3  
Old 04-14-2011
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Amazing score. Congratulations
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  #4  
Old 04-14-2011
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Congratulation, that's amazing !!!

I have several questions for you, I hope you have time to answer it :
1. Were there lots of immuno questions on your exam like many people reported back they encountered lots of them ?
2. Did you find most of the questions were conceptual or straight recall ?
3. How many times did you do UW ? Did you review all the explainations from each block ?
4. You mentioned that FA is the highest yield book that you used, did you find lots of things come from FA ? I havent finished reading FA yet because I mainly use my kaplan notes that I heavily annotated during my review.
5. My exam is in two weeks, I have done 85% of UW, what is your recommendation for me in the remaining time ?

Thanks
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  #5  
Old 04-14-2011
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yeah also

1[ is there any new trend in high yield topics ?

2] genetics and mol bio and microbiology........is FA enough
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  #6  
Old 04-14-2011
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hey also could u talk more about ur prep like

1] duration
2] prep method i mean like others did u also do first read 2nd read and 3rd reads ??

3 ] what about goljan RR ....did u annote the goljan too into fa ?...


If possible do prepare a jorge mthod of prep like zumzum !!
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Old 04-14-2011
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Smile Congrates !!!

Hi

Congratulations
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  #8  
Old 04-14-2011
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Can you say that you memorize FA????????
Where did you study molecular biology from???????

Thank you
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  #9  
Old 04-14-2011
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Show Teeth Keep on

Congratulation!

You know what's the mean of this word. It's simple but great.

We thank you for sharing, that's so generous.

I like those types who share very much.

I hope that we could meet each other one day in residency or conferences.

Remeber, Medaae, and more specif, AAE
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[COLOR=red][B]Sincerely[/B][/COLOR] :) [COLOR=seagreen][B]MEDAAE[/B][/COLOR]
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  #10  
Old 04-14-2011
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congrats...very nice score...

i'll follow ur pattern of study plan...thanxx
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  #11  
Old 04-14-2011
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Congratulations!!!
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Old 04-14-2011
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Thumbs Up Wow!!

Congratulations!! excellent score I def want to be like you when I grow up
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  #13  
Old 04-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mahony87 View Post
Congratulations!! excellent score I def want to be like you when I grow up

LMAO !! I am totally with you on this one!!

For me ...when I grow up..in 15 days
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  #14  
Old 04-14-2011
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Default Congrats!!!

Amazing score!!! Great post! Waiting foe your reply to the above questions, please do write in detail, after all the partying of course.
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  #15  
Old 04-14-2011
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Default Congratulations Doc

Congratulations Doc..this is a really great score...
i have a simple question..
I'm totally with you that FA + UW have the most importance, but how important is the books we first read, i get really confused choosing books, Microbiology Made Ridiculously Simple vs Microcards and BRS patho vs Goljan, so is choosing any of those and read then go memorize FA + UWORLD the best approach ?????
thank you in advance
Good luck
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  #16  
Old 04-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harlesmd View Post
Congratulation, that's amazing !!!

I have several questions for you, I hope you have time to answer it :
1. Were there lots of immuno questions on your exam like many people reported back they encountered lots of them ?
2. Did you find most of the questions were conceptual or straight recall ?
3. How many times did you do UW ? Did you review all the explainations from each block ?
4. You mentioned that FA is the highest yield book that you used, did you find lots of things come from FA ? I havent finished reading FA yet because I mainly use my kaplan notes that I heavily annotated during my review.
5. My exam is in two weeks, I have done 85% of UW, what is your recommendation for me in the remaining time ?

Thanks
Hi harlesmd!. Let me try to asnwer your questions...
1. I do remember seeing a few questions of immuno, but i don't think LOTS. Most were straight-forward, recall.
2. Most were conceptual. But remember most questions are MULTISTEP questions, and commonly one of those steps involve straight recall.
3. UW just once, during the last 3 days of subscription reviewed a few of the incorrect and YES, i REVIEWED ALL EXPLANATIONS, correct or incorrect.
4. I think most came from FA and some from my notes. Nevertheless, i felt the test failed to cover ALL FA and concentrated on selected topics.
5. Do 100% of UW and review some of the incorrect. Then go through FA and make sure you know it well. Review Webpath slides and your notes.

Good luck!
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  #17  
Old 04-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noothan View Post
yeah also

1[ is there any new trend in high yield topics ?

2] genetics and mol bio and microbiology........is FA enough
Hi noothan!

1. Didn't noticed any new trends.
2. I'll say FA+UW is enough, but not FA alone.

Good luck!
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  #18  
Old 04-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noothan View Post
hey also could u talk more about ur prep like

1] duration
2] prep method i mean like others did u also do first read 2nd read and 3rd reads ??

3 ] what about goljan RR ....did u annote the goljan too into fa ?...


If possible do prepare a jorge mthod of prep like zumzum !!
1. I started April 2010 and took exam March 22 2011, so took me 11 months. But noticed I had 2 months added to my study plan due to application issues. I think 8-9 months is enough, and at that time I felt ready for the test (just after finishing UW). On the other hand, don't know if those 2 more months delay affected my performance positively or not.
2. 1 read of Kaplan, 2-3 of FA.
3. Bought the book, read a few chapters, but did not annotate. Path was a strong subject for me. Did Goljan's audios.

Good luck!
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  #19  
Old 04-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evavar View Post
Can you say that you memorize FA????????
Where did you study molecular biology from???????

Thank you
1. Can't say I memorized it, but was extremely familiar with it. Knew exactly where everything was at and only small pieces of information were "new" in my last read.
2. I think UW and Kaplan is enough for molecular biology, but did review a few concepts from High Yield Molecular Biology. Again, "the more you read the more you score" EG
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Old 04-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by medaae View Post
Congratulation!

You know what's the mean of this word. It's simple but great.

We thank you for sharing, that's so generous.

I like those types who share very much.

I hope that we could meet each other one day in residency or conferences.

Remeber, Medaae, and more specif, AAE
Looking forward to meet you someday too!
Good luck! and your welcome!
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  #21  
Old 04-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abdulhakeem View Post
Congratulations Doc..this is a really great score...
i have a simple question..
I'm totally with you that FA + UW have the most importance, but how important is the books we first read, i get really confused choosing books, Microbiology Made Ridiculously Simple vs Microcards and BRS patho vs Goljan, so is choosing any of those and read then go memorize FA + UWORLD the best approach ?????
thank you in advance
Good luck
Well, now that you mention MMRS, made me remember that I did read that book. Great images that stick to your memory. But I think KAPLAN+FA+UW for micro is enough for step 1. But MMRS can be read very fast.

About choosing among options I think you should stick to the "working formula" books and among them, which ever works better for you. Again, my opinion is read those books once, take notes in FA and that way you wont have to go through it again.

Good luck!
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  #22  
Old 04-14-2011
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Default Nice

Hi Jorge,
Thanks for your valuable input..that's an amazing score, congrats!!!
I'd like to ask you something... I'm planning on sitting for the exam in August; I've reviewed FA twice, BRS Phys once and Kaplan once (no videos yet), Gojan RR 50%..so I've 4 months left.. I was thinking of doing KaplanQbank first...in a sort of review subjectwise (I might not finish it either) and finish off with UW and have the last week to review FA. Do u think this is a good idea in these last 4 months? What would u recommend? Please reply..Gracias...
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  #23  
Old 04-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triquetrum View Post
Hi Jorge,
Thanks for your valuable input..that's an amazing score, congrats!!!
I'd like to ask you something... I'm planning on sitting for the exam in August; I've reviewed FA twice, BRS Phys once and Kaplan once (no videos yet), Gojan RR 50%..so I've 4 months left.. I was thinking of doing KaplanQbank first...in a sort of review subjectwise (I might not finish it either) and finish off with UW and have the last week to review FA. Do u think this is a good idea in these last 4 months? What would u recommend? Please reply..Gracias...
Hi Triquetrum,
That seems to be a good plan. I found Kaplan videos particularly important because they tend to add some info to the lecture notes and also the visual-audio component makes things stick better to your head. If you have the money for KQbank, go ahead!... Again, didn't find it to be very HY, but it wont do you harm. Remember to keep your FA to your side anytime and annotate everything from UW. Suerte!
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  #24  
Old 04-14-2011
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Thanks for replying Jorge,
I'll take your advice. I also have my documents pending veryfication..so I hope that's done in the coming weeks. I wish you the best of luck and sucess in your path to residency! Ok, back to studying now..later.
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  #25  
Old 04-14-2011
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Congratulations Jorge.. U got an awesome score.. Much thanks for sharing your experience and giving valuable input.. Good luck ahead.
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  #26  
Old 04-15-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonal View Post
Can you please tell me, how many months did you follow the schedule?
Hi sonal,
Please check post #18 above...
Good luck!
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  #27  
Old 04-15-2011
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Smile hi

congract , very good result.
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Old 04-15-2011
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Congrats buddy, thats a great score!
Good luck for everything else!
And thanks for sharing all the information
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  #29  
Old 04-15-2011
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Default WOW

amazing score.. congrats!!!

i have a quick question.. before the results came out.. on ECFMG .. when u go to check score report did ur test date ever shw up without the exam results? I wrote my exam march 28 and i am waiting for my results. but when i check on the site to see if i got my grades, nothing shows up under score, not even the test date. is that the situation for everyone?

thanks for your help in advance
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  #30  
Old 04-15-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yusrarani View Post
amazing score.. congrats!!!

i have a quick question.. before the results came out.. on ECFMG .. when u go to check score report did ur test date ever shw up without the exam results? I wrote my exam march 28 and i am waiting for my results. but when i check on the site to see if i got my grades, nothing shows up under score, not even the test date. is that the situation for everyone?

thanks for your help in advance
It appeared empty before the test results came.
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  #31  
Old 04-16-2011
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Default Congratulations!!

Congratulations Jorge!! Great job and thanks for all the input!!
Good luck on the rest of your tests!!
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  #32  
Old 04-18-2011
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Hi,jus aftr reading ur post ,i went and bought first aid,however i find that a lot of important stuf in kaplan aint there,but it hs also other stuf not found in kaplan,is it enuf if i cud jus learn kaplan,to score a 99,cos aftr al these are al conceptual questions,and depends more on learnin hw to apply them r8?
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Old 04-18-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DIABLO View Post
Hi,jus aftr reading ur post ,i went and bought first aid,however i find that a lot of important stuf in kaplan aint there,but it hs also other stuf not found in kaplan,is it enuf if i cud jus learn kaplan,to score a 99,cos aftr al these are al conceptual questions,and depends more on learnin hw to apply them r8?
Hi DIABLO,
I know it's hard to believe, but I can say that the answers for most of the questions in the test can be found in FA. Nevertheless, just reading FA for the exam is not enough for most IMG's, because FA does not explain underlying concepts and mechanisms. We need to first understand those concepts (many well discussed in Kaplan) and then use FA for straight recall.

As I said before in one post, Step 1 questions are known to be conceptual question given in multistep stems. To get to the correct answer you do need to conceptualize, but you will also need straight recall (from memorization) in one or more steps of the multistep problem.

Of course it is OK to "just learn kaplan", but in my opinion that will be a difficult task because Kaplan is extensive and has a lot of "not that High Yield" material. It is very likely that once you finish reading all Kaplan Lecture Notes, you will not remember many of the things you will likely be tested on.

Good luck my friend
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  #34  
Old 04-18-2011
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Default Adding to what Jorge wrote

And this is were FA Comes in.....High yield points and when u add alll the extrapoints from Kaplan and Uworld ...it becomes ur final one book grail for Step 1.....revising from just one book is easier in the final days
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