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Old 11-12-2013
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Kaplan Medical Kaplan CS Live Prep

Hey. Can any of you give me a review on Kaplan's Live Prep? I know it's costly and all but I want the best prep for my CS as I don't think I would be able to practice with a study partner.

If any of you has already taken it, please answer my queries -
Availability - I want dates in May. How early should I think for applying for it?

Also, do you think FA + CSE videos + Kapan Live Prep + maybe practice with a family member can ensure me a PASS on CS?

I'm really skeptical about this exam. Just don't wanna take any chances.

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Old 11-12-2013
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Hi there,

Kaplan Live course is very very highly highly recommend!! I know it is VERY expensive, but you will not regret about it!!! Definitely!!!

day 1: introduction ....
day 2: ICE (PN), SEP, CIS.
day 3: study group and physical exam
day 4: 2 cases with real sp and study group
day 5: mock exam with 12 sp and feedback about your performance.

I would advice you to take Kaplan about 3 weeks before your real exam. Also, try to find out study partner there, with whom I gonna practice by Kaplan's strategy.

At Kaplan you will have a lot of extra papers, examples ... which is very important.

CSEvideo???? No never!!! Kaplan and CSEvideo are sooooo different things!!! Do not waste your many with CSE video.

If you need more info about Kaplan go to their website and read all info about it.

One more thing, I got it on this amazing forum, hope it helps:


"FIRSTLY- the physical exam
a-see the deal here is that the SP is grading you for the physical and the etiquette. The SP is not an actual patient but an actor. He is taught how to recognize CERTAIN ways to perform the physical.. based on which he will grade you. Now being an actual doctor - you might be doing something right. but the SP might not recognize it.. and hence u will not get the check mark for it!!
b- they teach you recognizable ways (by the SP) of doing the PE.
and by the end of it.. you can do all the exams in less than 3 minutes on an avg.
cvs - 3 minutes
RS - 3 minutes
neuro- 4 minutes
abdomen- 2.5 minutes
musculoskeletal - <3 minutes
HEENT - <2 minutes

so basically this gives you MORE THAN ENOUGH TIME TO CLOSE your case, discuss diagnoses, work ups, counsel, hidden concerns etc etc.

the way they train you is really good specially for IMGs. you deal with SPs individually. its the SPs themselves that actually show you how to do things, what to say how to say etc etc.. how to be empathetic but not sympathetic. its more of active learning. if you are doing something that is incorrect - they stop u and u start over till u get it right. so basically very well organized stuff.

main portions in the CIS - validating patient feelings, empathizing, bringing out hidden concerns, managing difficult situations, handling abuse cases etc.

THIRDLY - an entire day dedicated to management of difficult cases and also hidden concern cases

FOURTHLY - actual simulated test with feedback
on the last day of the course there was a full scale exam with 12 SPs etc. and they gave u individual feedback on ur patient note, CIS etc. you could sit down with the Sps you had and they would tell u again how u could improve etc.

and lastly - the patient checklist
the exam is very very subjective. you are graded on 2/3 components based on how the SP feels u are doing - and for all of this the SP has a pre determined checklist that u need to meet. (btw there is no longer a history checklist - there is however a CIS one and one for SEP i think)
so i thought if someone could train you and mould you accordingly so as for you to meet the criteria on this checklist - it was great!

If you have the resources - go in for the kaplan course! i know its a **** load of cash --but it is really really worth it. It goes without saying - that you wouldn't want to screw up on any of the usmle steps. specially the CS. so if you can manage the resources -- GO FOR IT!"

Take care and good luck on your exam!
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The above post was thanked by:
DNA 105 (11-12-2013), HTA2015 (11-13-2013), usbound (03-18-2014)
Old 11-12-2013
USMLE Forums Veteran
Steps History: Step 1 Only
Posts: 216
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Reputation: 190

Wow. I couldn't have expected a more informational post. Thank you so much!

Yes I'm definitely going for the course. So no CSE videos. That's what I've read as well.

By the way how early should I apply for the course to ensure availability? 1 or 2 months on advance from the desired date?

Cheers and good luck in your future affairs
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Old 11-12-2013
dr.Zh's Avatar
Steps History: ---
Posts: 123
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No problem.

Hope you will share with us your prep and exam experience one day

Yeah, that's right -- no CSEvideo. I did subscribe on it and guess what? Totally wasted $139 !!! if I would know, I never ever did it!! After Kaplan you will understand that CSEVideo not enough for exam and there are a lot of mistakes!!!

I would advice you to apply as soon as you can, because the sits are limited.

Take care.
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The above post was thanked by:
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