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Assistance with USMLE, Step Study

The best preparation for Step 1 is mastering the Phase 1 content; this means that you fully understand and can apply the main concepts.  The intensity, organization, and persistence of your step study will also significantly affect your exam performance. Start planning during fall semester of second year, and begin concentrated study early in January. You will have eight (8) weeks dedicated time for step 1 study.

Components of the Step 1 Study Plan:

  • Detailed schedule. What, when, where, how you will review specific topics.
  • Practice questions. Online Q Banks give best explanations and tracking of performance.
  • Learning Issues—identified from practice questions, study and regular concept review.
  • NBME practice exams. Important additional feedback re: probable Step 1 score range. Identify and track changes in gap areas.
  • Review books, flashcards, videos, on-line materials and high yield personal course notes. Content information, explanations, graphs, charts, distilled knowledge. Use these materials to resolve learning issues you've identified with practice questions.

Make a detailed monthly, weekly, and daily schedule:

  • Start with a thorough content review—4 weeks (use a Q bank subject block daily to guide and pace your study)
  • Take an NBME and assess strengths & weaknesses
  • Concentrate on bringing up your weaker areas—2 weeks (use 1 subject block & 1 mixed block daily)
  • Take another NBME and assess overall strengths
  • Concentrate on 4 blocks of mixed practice questions (around 200/day)—2 weeks
  • Ready for the test

Check with your Learning Specialist for more specifics on a daily schedule.  Stay in touch with your Learning Specialist during study time.