My step 2 CK experience: not too bad! - USMLE Forums
USMLE Forums Logo
USMLE Forums         Your Reliable USMLE Online Community     Members     Posts
Home
USMLE Articles
USMLE News
USMLE Polls
USMLE Books
USMLE Apps
Go Back   USMLE Forums > USMLE Step 2 CK Forum

USMLE Step 2 CK Forum USMLE Step 2 CK Discussion Forum: Let's talk about anything related to USMLE Step 2 CK exam


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 02-04-2016
USMLE Forums Addict
 
Steps History: 1+CK+CS
Posts: 107
Threads: 18
Thanked 71 Times in 26 Posts
Reputation: 81
Default My step 2 CK experience: not too bad!

I have already posted my experience for Step 1 which some people found useful. So check that out, if you want to know more about my background.
Hereís what happened for Step 2 CK.


Exam date: 15 Jan 2016
Score: 254
Mean (SD) of US med students at the time of my exam: 240 (18)
Unlike most people my score for step 2 (254) went down compared to step 1 (259). Keep in mind that the national average for step 2 is 10 points higher than step 1. Anyway, I am happy I am done with my ECFMG certification. I think I know why this happened and hopefully other people can avoid my mistakes.


Total prep time = just shy of 500 hours scattered over 6 months


Details of prep time line:
After step 1 (June 2015) I took three weeks to pass step 2 CS (July 10, 2015). I started preparing for step 2 CK the day after. This probably was one of my biggest mistakes. I should have given myself some time off, possibly should have taken a vacation before attacking step 2. I feel I was completely burned out which really affected my preparation. During the prep time I was also doing my post-doc, submitted a couple manuscripts, interviewed for a scientist position (and got it J), prepared my application for residencies and applied to residency programs, my parents visited for 3 weeks and my sister got married. So to be fair I had a lot on my plate. I logged my study time and did an average of ~ 2-3 hrs a day summing to a total of 485 hrs over this period.

Study material:
  • Master the boards for step 2 ck (2x)
  • Master the boards for step 3, only chapters other than internal medicine (1x fast)
  • Kaplan USMLE STEP 2 CK Comprehensive Cases by Conrad Fischer (watched half of the videos in this series; didnít have time for the rest).
  • For surgery I did Pestanaís surgery notes (1x) which is essentially the same as KLN
  • For OB/GYN I also read Kaplan lecture notes (1x) but didnít retain much
  • Parts of first aid for step 1
Question bank:
  • Only Uworld
Note: Did it once in timed random new mode, barely finished it and did not get a chance to review my mistakes or go over marked questions. For the first 2/3 I read all the explanations, but for the latter 1/3 I only had time to read the explanations for my mistakes. My score started in the 70% and rose to over 80% over time (overall 80th percentile).


Study order:
  • Question bank from day 1
  • Books on weak subjects along the way
  • MTB-2 once half-way along my prep and another time near the end
  • MTB-3 near the end
Mock Exams:
  • Kaplan USMLE step 2 CK Diagnostic Test (day 0 before starting prep): 65%
  • NBME form 4 (-5 month): 252 (was very happy)
  • NBME form 3 (-3 month): 240 (I was starting to forget things from step 1)
  • NBME form 7 (-2 month): 225 (disaster, realized I needed more practice)
  • UWSA (- 3 weeks): 260 (highly predictive of actual score)
Note: I did not have time to review any of these exams. I just went over my mistakes and found the right answers. Also did not have time to do the free sample questions on USMLE website.

Things I did right:
  • Uworld is very helpful. Make sure to read ALL the explanations.
  • NBME forms and UWSA are HIGHLY predictive of your performance. Take them along the way.
Mistakes:
  • Make sure you get some rest between your step 1 and 2, to avoid burnout.
  • Make sure you set a date from the beginning and stick to it, thatís the only way to stay on track.
  • I should have done a proper review course like I did for step 1 (Kaplan video + LN). Thatís the best way to deepen your knowledge and achieve high scores.
  • MTB-2 is not a great book, AT ALL. I donít know what is. Probably none!
  • I didnít have time to read ALL the explanations for the latter 3rd of Uworld, neither to go over my notes and wrong questions.
  • I came across USMLE secrets which seems like a great book near the end of prep. Unfortunatly, didnít have time to read it.

Final thoughts:
USMLE exams are challenging but fair exams; they are very accurate in ranking the applicants, i.e. standard tests. To ace the exam you should know your stuff; so if youíre an old graduate like me donít rely on Uworld only. Do a proper review course with videos in parallel. I did that for step 1 and was quite happy, I didnít get to do the same for step 2 and I paid the price. That being said the other component of success is being quick on the exam date. That only comes with practicing. The stems are much longer than Uworld and there will be questions that you have no clue about. Try to finish your Uworld blocks 10 minutes early. That way you may have a few minutes to go over your marked questions in the actual exam.
On the exam day, as I said for step 1, donít panic or get distracted. Keep your head down and plough through. Red bull is very helpful. Keep it in your locker and take a sip on your breaks. You need enough caffeine in your system to keep you alert but not too much to get you agitated.
Best of luck to everyone. I have one more step to go (step 3), so if you find this post useful pray / send good vibes for me please!
Finally, I know people do medicine for various reasons, but try to keep a little part of your soul. Yes, weíll make money and weíll have good lives, but try to remain sensitive to human suffering and be respectful and helpful to your patients. Thatís the oath we took! Also donít turn into A-holes. If a fellow IMG asks for your help in the future, help! May the force be with you!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
The above post was thanked by:
ADD.MD (09-15-2016), anu4usmle (02-04-2016), arvindnavneet15 (04-06-2016), cbooky (03-18-2016), dheera (02-04-2016), draimmle (11-18-2016), DrThea (05-23-2016), HighDefinition (02-04-2016), Linc (04-13-2016), MadForPaedia (06-04-2016), maymed (04-02-2016), MerryM (05-17-2016), nikhiljadhav (02-09-2016), resiseeker (02-04-2016), safalamaskey (07-20-2016), vivispeed (05-20-2016), wuzzy (03-22-2016)



  #2  
Old 02-04-2016
USMLE Forums Scout
 
Steps History: 1+CK+CS
Posts: 52
Threads: 5
Thanked 25 Times in 12 Posts
Reputation: 35
Default

Thanks for sharing your experience and congrats for your score!

Some questions:
--which resource do you think was the most helpful in your prep? UW?
--why do you think MTB is not a great book?
--did Fischer's Comprehensive Cases help you? Do you recommend watching them?

Getting 250+ on both steps is a hard task. And specially with all lately rumors about CK. Besides, you didn't even finish UW "properly" and felt MTB wasn't helpful at all. So share all your secrets!

May the force be with you too,

~HD
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #3  
Old 02-04-2016
USMLE Forums Addict
 
Steps History: 1+CK+CS
Posts: 107
Threads: 18
Thanked 71 Times in 26 Posts
Reputation: 81
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by HighDefinition View Post
Thanks for sharing your experience and congrats for your score!

Some questions:
--which resource do you think was the most helpful in your prep? UW?
--why do you think MTB is not a great book?
--did Fischer's Comprehensive Cases help you? Do you recommend watching them?

Getting 250+ on both steps is a hard task. And specially with all lately rumors about CK. Besides, you didn't even finish UW "properly" and felt MTB wasn't helpful at all. So share all your secrets!

May the force be with you too,

~HD
Thanks for the compliment. To be honest a competetive score for each step based on what I've hear from PD's is 1 SD above mean. This means above 249 for step 1 and above 258 for step 2. So my step 2 score is not that good.

Re your questions:
- Yes UW given you read all the explanations.
- MTB is a minimalist review book. There are a lot of questions on step 2 where you don't find the answer in MTB. Compare it to FA for step 1 where the answer for >90% of questions was in FA. Besides there are many instances where MTB is plain wrong.
- Fischer comprehensive cases are useful. He's pretty funny and that makes you remember things, but I think a better choice for high score would be to watch the actual Kaplan classroom anywhere videos if you have time.
- There's no secret. Aside from being a good test taker, I think preparing for step 1 is also very helpful. There were many questions on step 2 which I answered based on my step 1 knowledge.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
The above post was thanked by:
arvindnavneet15 (04-06-2016), HighDefinition (02-04-2016), wuzzy (03-22-2016)
  #4  
Old 04-02-2016
USMLE Forums Scout
 
Steps History: CS Only
Posts: 16
Threads: 4
Thanked 2 Times in 1 Post
Reputation: 12
Default

Congratulations on your scores . I wanted to ask a couple of Questions regarding CK prep. Any advice will be highly appreciated. Can we skip reading Kaplans?? Also will Clinical mastery series help ?

My plan is to read MTB 2/3 and UW. Anything else you will suggest.

Thanks in advance !!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #5  
Old 04-02-2016
maymed's Avatar
USMLE Forums Scout
 
Steps History: 1 + CK
Posts: 85
Threads: 5
Thanked 53 Times in 30 Posts
Reputation: 63
Thumbs Up

Congrats PeterPan! Thanks for sharing

I hope you match 2017!
__________________
You are capable of more than you know. Choose a goal that seems right for you and strive to be the best, however hard the path. Persist! the world needs all you can give.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #6  
Old 05-17-2016
MerryM's Avatar
USMLE Forums Scout
 
Steps History: ---
Posts: 27
Threads: 1
Thanked 8 Times in 8 Posts
Reputation: 18
Star

Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterPan View Post
I have already posted my experience for Step 1 which some people found useful. So check that out, if you want to know more about my background.
Hereís what happened for Step 2 CK.


Exam date: 15 Jan 2016
Score: 254
Mean (SD) of US med students at the time of my exam: 240 (18)
Unlike most people my score for step 2 (254) went down compared to step 1 (259). Keep in mind that the national average for step 2 is 10 points higher than step 1. Anyway, I am happy I am done with my ECFMG certification. I think I know why this happened and hopefully other people can avoid my mistakes.


Total prep time = just shy of 500 hours scattered over 6 months


Details of prep time line:
After step 1 (June 2015) I took three weeks to pass step 2 CS (July 10, 2015). I started preparing for step 2 CK the day after. This probably was one of my biggest mistakes. I should have given myself some time off, possibly should have taken a vacation before attacking step 2. I feel I was completely burned out which really affected my preparation. During the prep time I was also doing my post-doc, submitted a couple manuscripts, interviewed for a scientist position (and got it J), prepared my application for residencies and applied to residency programs, my parents visited for 3 weeks and my sister got married. So to be fair I had a lot on my plate. I logged my study time and did an average of ~ 2-3 hrs a day summing to a total of 485 hrs over this period.

Study material:
  • Master the boards for step 2 ck (2x)
  • Master the boards for step 3, only chapters other than internal medicine (1x fast)
  • Kaplan USMLE STEP 2 CK Comprehensive Cases by Conrad Fischer (watched half of the videos in this series; didnít have time for the rest).
  • For surgery I did Pestanaís surgery notes (1x) which is essentially the same as KLN
  • For OB/GYN I also read Kaplan lecture notes (1x) but didnít retain much
  • Parts of first aid for step 1
Question bank:
  • Only Uworld
Note: Did it once in timed random new mode, barely finished it and did not get a chance to review my mistakes or go over marked questions. For the first 2/3 I read all the explanations, but for the latter 1/3 I only had time to read the explanations for my mistakes. My score started in the 70% and rose to over 80% over time (overall 80th percentile).


Study order:
  • Question bank from day 1
  • Books on weak subjects along the way
  • MTB-2 once half-way along my prep and another time near the end
  • MTB-3 near the end
Mock Exams:
  • Kaplan USMLE step 2 CK Diagnostic Test (day 0 before starting prep): 65%
  • NBME form 4 (-5 month): 252 (was very happy)
  • NBME form 3 (-3 month): 240 (I was starting to forget things from step 1)
  • NBME form 7 (-2 month): 225 (disaster, realized I needed more practice)
  • UWSA (- 3 weeks): 260 (highly predictive of actual score)
Note: I did not have time to review any of these exams. I just went over my mistakes and found the right answers. Also did not have time to do the free sample questions on USMLE website.

Things I did right:
  • Uworld is very helpful. Make sure to read ALL the explanations.
  • NBME forms and UWSA are HIGHLY predictive of your performance. Take them along the way.
Mistakes:
  • Make sure you get some rest between your step 1 and 2, to avoid burnout.
  • Make sure you set a date from the beginning and stick to it, thatís the only way to stay on track.
  • I should have done a proper review course like I did for step 1 (Kaplan video + LN). Thatís the best way to deepen your knowledge and achieve high scores.
  • MTB-2 is not a great book, AT ALL. I donít know what is. Probably none!
  • I didnít have time to read ALL the explanations for the latter 3rd of Uworld, neither to go over my notes and wrong questions.
  • I came across USMLE secrets which seems like a great book near the end of prep. Unfortunatly, didnít have time to read it.

Final thoughts:
USMLE exams are challenging but fair exams; they are very accurate in ranking the applicants, i.e. standard tests. To ace the exam you should know your stuff; so if youíre an old graduate like me donít rely on Uworld only. Do a proper review course with videos in parallel. I did that for step 1 and was quite happy, I didnít get to do the same for step 2 and I paid the price. That being said the other component of success is being quick on the exam date. That only comes with practicing. The stems are much longer than Uworld and there will be questions that you have no clue about. Try to finish your Uworld blocks 10 minutes early. That way you may have a few minutes to go over your marked questions in the actual exam.
On the exam day, as I said for step 1, donít panic or get distracted. Keep your head down and plough through. Red bull is very helpful. Keep it in your locker and take a sip on your breaks. You need enough caffeine in your system to keep you alert but not too much to get you agitated.
Best of luck to everyone. I have one more step to go (step 3), so if you find this post useful pray / send good vibes for me please!
Finally, I know people do medicine for various reasons, but try to keep a little part of your soul. Yes, weíll make money and weíll have good lives, but try to remain sensitive to human suffering and be respectful and helpful to your patients. Thatís the oath we took! Also donít turn into A-holes. If a fellow IMG asks for your help in the future, help! May the force be with you!


Great tips for us preparing for step 2ck and in my case it was really helpful cause my step 1 score wasn't that great and i need to ace this exam , if everything goes right i hope to enter the 2018 match and I also want to do step 3 before the match!
i wish u the best of luck and i send u all my prayers , may ur match come true.
Congrats on ur great performance on both exams
may the force be with u too.

#IMGStogether
__________________
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."
Aristotle
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #7  
Old 05-18-2016
USMLE Forums Addict
 
Steps History: 1+CK+CS
Posts: 107
Threads: 18
Thanked 71 Times in 26 Posts
Reputation: 81
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by match 2015 View Post
Congratulations on your scores . I wanted to ask a couple of Questions regarding CK prep. Any advice will be highly appreciated. Can we skip reading Kaplans?? Also will Clinical mastery series help ?

My plan is to read MTB 2/3 and UW. Anything else you will suggest.

Thanks in advance !!
Yes, you can skip reading Kaplans, that's what I did. But I imagine watching the videos would be helpful, although I did not.

Yes, Clinical Mastery is very helpful. Unfortunately I didn't have time to go over them, but the couple I did were really good.

The only thing I would add to your plan is to put less emphasize on MTB and much more on UW & Clinical Mastery.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
The above post was thanked by:
MerryM (06-06-2016)
  #8  
Old 05-26-2016
USMLE Forums Scout
 
Steps History: Not yet
Posts: 15
Threads: 3
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Reputation: 12
Default

Congratulations! Thank you sharing your experience!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #9  
Old 06-04-2016
USMLE Forums Scout
 
Steps History: Step 1 Only
Posts: 21
Threads: 1
Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Reputation: 13
Default

Thank you v much for sharing and being detailed
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message



Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the USMLE Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:
Medical School
Choose "---" if you don't want to tell. AMG for US & Canadian medical schools. IMG for all other medical schools.
USMLE Steps History
What steps finished! Example: 1+CK+CS+3 = Passed Step 1, Step 2 CK, Step 2 CS, and Step 3.

Choose "---" if you don't want to tell.

Favorite USMLE Books
What USMLE books you really think are useful. Leave blank if you don't want to tell.
Location
Where you live. Leave blank if you don't want to tell.

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Bad exam experience , need feed back!!! Dmcheaven USMLE Step 2 CS Forum 0 05-16-2014 07:57 PM
bad step 2 ck experience aman_j USMLE Step 2 CK Forum 23 03-01-2014 04:22 AM
uwsa vs. nbme and bad exam experience. idtbamd USMLE Step 2 CK Forum 12 08-11-2013 12:20 AM
Step 1 Prep for bad students ? DoctorGSS USMLE Step 1 Forum 6 06-22-2012 07:12 PM
My exam experience. "not so bad" DrSeddik USMLE Step 1 Forum 9 02-06-2010 10:47 PM

RSS Feed
Find Us on Facebook
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

USMLE® & other trade marks belong to their respective owners, read full disclaimer
USMLE Forums created under Creative Commons 3.0 License. (2009-2014)