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This will be an all-inconclusive ultimate guide on how to study for Step 2 CK. This will also be significantly longer than most of my posts which are long as is. You can get your free PDF here.
But before we begin, if you find this content helpful consider sharing it with a friend or through social media. When it comes to the resources for Step 2 CK, I have some good news and bad news. Good news is that there are fewer resources to use for Step 2 compared to Step 1.
How OnlineMedEd Helped Me Score a 281 on Step 2 CK
You may recall back to the good old not really Step 1 study days, where you seemed to have an endless amount of choices. For Step 2, the options, or at least good options, are pretty limited.
This is a big duh. Use it. I attribute my score in large part to this! For Step 1 you could turn to First Aid and Pathoma. But imagine if high yield info from First Aid and Pathoma were combined together for Step 2.
OME was golden for me. OME and Dr. Williams did that for me. You can check out OME here. I loved Step 2 Secrets. I convinced myself for confidence that if I could answer the questions in this small book quick pages then I should know most of the high-yield info for Step 2.
But I recommend you get yourself a copy. So I loved Sketchy Medical when studying for Step 1. Try out Picmonic for the same style of videos which combine silly images with high-yield info.
The one thing I liked about Picmonic, even more so than Sketchy, is that the videos are significantly shorter. Most were minutes! The tests, however, are notorious for having crazy fluctuating and steep curves.
UWSA exams, in my opinion, were the best predictor of my final score. This seems to be the norm across the med school forums as well. If you have a good amount of time before your exam then definitely consider starting them. As I said before, unfortunately, no one resource serves the purpose for Step 2 the way First Aid did for Step 1.
Gain a few points on your final exam this way. Check out the book and its reviews here. I personally have little experience with MTB but it seems to be the go-to book for students who need a text. Many students appear to enjoy it according to the reviews.Every year, the NBME publishes performance data for each of the exams. You can view excerpts of performance data here. Please note: The interactive score report below is a sample Step 3 report, but can be used to understand Step 1, Step 2 Clinical Knowledge CKand Step 3 score reports.
Samples of the content areas that appear in Step 1 and Step 2 CK score reports are also provided. Content Areas page — Step 1 Score Report. Step 1 : Step 2 CK : Step 3 : Examination data including performance information and recorded patient encounters from USMLE examinations may be used by the USMLE program or made available to third parties for research and other purposes that are disclosed to or authorized by you, as appropriate, at the time any data is collected.
In such instances, the data will be confidential, and individual examinees will not be identifiable in any publication. If you do not wish your examination data to be made available for such purposes, you must advise the USMLE Secretariat in writing no later than 30 days before your administration. Note: Graphical performance profiles, which are included on your original score reports, are not included in your USMLE transcript.
Contact the FSMB if you want your transcript sent to a medical licensing authority at any time. If you have not registered for or taken Step 3 and want your transcript sent to anyone other than a medical licensing authority, submit the request to the last entity that registered you.
Which entity you contact depends on which Steps you have taken and where you want your transcript sent. Use the table below to determine which entity you should contact based on your specific details and needs. All rights reserved. United States Medical Licensing Examination. The current minimum passing scores are as follows: Step 1 : Step 2 CK : Step 3 : Examination data including performance information and recorded patient encounters from USMLE examinations may be used by the USMLE program or made available to third parties for research and other purposes that are disclosed to or authorized by you, as appropriate, at the time any data is collected.As a result, no predetermined percentage of examinees will pass or fail the examination.
The recommended minimum passing level is reviewed periodically and may be adjusted at any time. On the examinations containing multiple-choice items, the percentages of correctly answered items required to pass varies by Step and from form to form within each Step. However, examinees typically must answer approximately 60 percent of items correctly to achieve a passing score.
For Step 3, your performance on the case simulations will affect your Step 3 score and could affect whether you pass or fail. The proportional contribution of the score on the case simulations is no greater than the amount of time you are given to complete the case simulations. For up-to-date information on minimum passing scores, examination performance data, and general scoring methodology, please visit the USMLE website. Results for computer-based examinations Step 1, Step 2 CK, and Step 3 are typically available three to four weeks after your test date.
However, a number of factors may delay score reporting. When selecting your test date and inquiring about results, you should allow at least eight weeks to receive notification that your score report is available.
For more specific information about potential scoring delays, please visit the Announcement section of the USMLE website.
When your score is available, you will receive an e-mail notification from the organization that registered you for your examination. Your score report will remain available on the website of the organization that registered you for your examination for approximately days from the date of the e-mail notification.
After the score report is removed from the website, your scores will be provided to you only in the form of an official transcript, for a fee, through the organization that registered you for your examination. Visit the USMLE website for more details, including how to request a transcript for you or for a third party.
For Step 1, Step 2 CK, and Step 2 CS, if you do not want your results reported to your medical school, you must send a request from your e-mail account of record to webmail nbme. A separate request must be submitted for each examination administration.
For Step 3, you must specify your reporting preference on your application. Examination data including performance information and recorded patient encounters may be used by the USMLE program or made available to third parties for research and other purposes that are disclosed to or authorized by you, as appropriate. In all instances, the data will be confidential, and individual examinees will not be identifiable in any publication.
If you do not wish your examination data to be made available for such purposes, you must advise the USMLE Secretariat via e-mail at webmail nbme. If you do not open every block of your Step 1, Step 2 CK, or Step 3 examination, your examination may not be scored and the attempt may be reported as an incomplete on your USMLE transcript.
For Step 2 CS, if you leave the test early, or otherwise fail to carry out one or more of the cases, your performance may be assessed on those cases you completed. For privacy purposes, the USMLE program does not provide scores or outcomes by telephone, e-mail, or fax to anyone. Additionally, the scoring process is not expedited or accelerated for any individual or group.
For all Steps and Step Components, a rigorous process is used to ensure the accuracy of scores, including a double scoring method involving independent scoring systems. To date, the score recheck process has not resulted in a score change. However, if you wish to request a score recheck, submit a request and service fee to the organization that registered you for your examination.
Your request must be received no later than 90 days after your result was released to you. Registration Organization.
For Step 1, Step 2 CK, and Step 3, when a request for a score recheck is received, the original response record is retrieved and rescored using a system that is outside of the normal processing routine. The rechecked score is then compared with the original score.
For Step 2 CS, the ratings received from the standardized patients and results from the patient notes are retrieved, re-summed, and reconverted into final scores to verify the accuracy of the original outcome.
Encounters and patient notes are not rerated, and videos are not reviewed during the recheck. The performance of examinees is monitored and may be analyzed to detect aberrancies that raise questions about the validity of scores. The USMLE program reserves the right to cancel scores that are at or above the passing level if the USMLE program has a good faith basis for questioning whether they represent a valid measure of knowledge or competence as sampled by the examination.
Questions about score validity may result from irregular behavior please refer to the Irregular Behavior section of this Bulletin or other factors. You will have an opportunity to provide information that you consider relevant. After review and analysis of all available information, scores will be classified as either valid and reported or invalid and canceled.For those with less-than-stellar Step 1 scores, Step 2 CK is even more critical now.
Ultimately, I was pursuing a highly competitive subspecialty: Gastroenterology. I knew I had to make my Step 2 CK score count.
One Wednesday four weeks after my test day, I received my results. I was shocked; I scored a ! Many with high scores will say that the key to their success was putting in a superhuman amount of time and effort. However, I took a more strategic approach to Step 2 CK. Personally, I believe this was the main factor that contributed to my success on test day.
Proper preparation for shelf exams during rotations is key to establishing a solid foundation for Step 2 CK. You might find this challenging because what you learn on the wards may not have any relevance to how you are assessed on the shelf. This is where OnlineMedEd comes in. For me, OME was the missing link between the wards and the exam. The wards alone simply cannot provide this. If you think about it, what you see and are taught on the wards is essentially random.
Furthermore, students often use too many resources without reviewing any of them in sufficient depth. Reading results in much poorer information retention than does answering and reviewing practice questions. All the content you need to master for Step 2 CK can be found in the UWorld explanations, and OME is a great way to learn that content in a more efficient, less painful way. In addition to mastering content, test-taking technique is crucial for USMLE success, and unless you have the option of tutoring, the only way to hone these skills is to do practice questions.
To maximize efficiency, you should reflect on which areas are your weakest and target your preparation accordingly. Consequently it also was the shelf exam for which I felt the least prepared.
To compensate for this, I rewatched all the OME pediatrics videos during my dedicated study period. This brought my pediatrics knowledge more into line with other subject areas. But even for my weak areas, I never used textbooks or subject-specific resources like Case Files or PreTest.Allopathic Seniors which compares submitted ERAS data and the likelihood of matching into specific fields.
As you can see, some specialties have similar applicant characteristics in terms of USMLE Step 1 score between those who did and did not match.
This seems to occur more with traditionally competitive programs such as dermatology, orthopaedic surgery, otolaryngology, and plastic surgery. Although Step 2 CK does not matter as much as Step 1, it has become an increasingly important differentiator in the last few years because residency applications have become so competitive. Use the following widget to input your USMLE scores and other data to calculate your chances of matching into your desired specialty:.
Rising seniors : Build relationships with faculty, shine on the wards, rock your shelf examsand consider taking the Step 2 CK early and doing as well as possible. If you have time, you may also want to complete some research, publish abstracts and papers, and attend national and regional conferences in your specialty of interest. Preclinical years : There are only three things you should focus on in the preclinical years:.
High-quality medical school advice. At Memorang we understand how stressful and competitive medical school can be. After all… we went through it too!CFI04: Advice from Dr. Fischer: Which USMLE step is most important?
Good luck! Build relationships with faculty and try to find the specialty that most appeals to you Get involved in research as early as possible, with an emphasis towards gaining experience and authorship.USMLE Step 1 score has been analyzed in a previous article and while step 1 is a huge factor is deciding the interviews and match chances, step 2 CK scores are often just as important.
In fact, the two scores together can decide for most part if you will be called for an interview. Analysis of the program directors survey by NRMP yields very interesting results for how step 2 CK scores affect your chances of interview and subsequently residency.
The subjects are arranged in the order of increasing average scores. One must be careful to interpret this data because this is a composite of all applicants. The values are lower than those required of by the international medical graduates because they also include scores and data of graduates of American medical schools. An important facet of this result is, if you have scores lower than in step 2 CK, then the chances of getting interviews in ANY specialty is very poor.
However, there are inter-subject differences that are also apparent on this graph. Psychiatry, family medicine and pediatrics do not per say place that much importance on step 2 scores in comparison to internal medicine, pathology or radiology. For applicants that lie in between the blue and red lines, the success of their application may depend on other factors. These other issues are dealt in depth in respective segments of the website.
Conclusions :. One must realize that scores are but one factor in the whole match process and should not affect your choice of applying for match.
There are other things in your resume which can make a positive impact in your application process like research, USCE, observershipsvolunteer work and other achievement can often help you just as much as scores. Email This BlogThis! Newer Post Older Post Home. Subscribe to: Post Comments Atom.
HOT Topics! Popular by Demand. As a response to my past article, On writing to the department chiefI had several folks ask me what kind of letter should on In the first part of the article, I spoke about masters as an option for foreign medical graduates either before or as an alternative to This is a list of programs that do not participate in the NRMP match.
Todays post is a short blurb about the importance of having a consistent name used on all of important documents. Often times one may no This track may be better suited for international medical graduates who do not succeed in getti Letter of recommendation - 'To Waive' made simple.
To Waive or not to waive?Jump to navigation. Your Clinical Trunk M2 year is arguably the most challenging, exciting, and rewarding part of your medical school training. So much will happen during this year. You will see new life, death, healing, heartbreaking sadness, medical miracles, and much more.
As the year progresses, you will also begin to consider the next direction you take within the fields of medicine that you wish to pursue.
At some point, most everyone will ask some form of the question: I want to enter X specialty — what does it take or do I have what it takes to get into that field?
The following information is aimed at providing a least an initial foray into the answer to that question. To start this conversation, the competitiveness of the major medical specialty fields are categorized into three tiers:. These categories are meant to provide a general guideline, but know that there is fluidity, and nuance to these categories, and that the boundaries between them are not fixed.
Scores & Transcripts
Regardless of the category of competitiveness, any one program can be considered more competitive depending on other variables such as program location, prestige, etc.
Exceptions in the opposite direction generally do not hold up as well. That is, the least prestigious Dermatology program in the least desirable location is still likely a highly competitive program, as there are consistently many more applicants in Dermatology than there are available slots across the country.
As a general rule, there are 3 criteria that are very critical to your residency application: Step 1, Step 2, and Clinical Trunk grades. Low performance on 2 parts however, quite likely limits match possibilities. A discussion of Step 1 will be approached first by breaking down scores into 4 separate categories.
Critical Components in the Match
The scores used to create the boundaries of each category are somewhat arbitrary, but they provide a starting place for explanation. Program directors highly value clinical performance, as this criterion reflects much more than a score on a test. Your teamwork, dedication, knowledge base, bedside manner, communication, handling of difficult patients, clinical skills, work ethic, etc.
Final clinical grades are always determined most significantly by a combination of clinical evaluations and shelf scores. The target percentages can vary slightly between clerkships, but not significantly so. It is a statement of the obvious, but the more Honors and High Passes earned in the Clinical Trunk, the better the clinical record. Conversely, the more M2 Passes earned, the lower the record. Despite that, a Pass grade represents an adequate performance.
Passes across the entire M2 year constitutes a low clinical performance. A low clinical performance paired with a low Step 1 score almost certainly limits a student to consider only the less competitive specialties.
Honors grades are difficult to earn, but be aware that an all High Pass record across the M2 year is a very good performance. For the most desirable programs Metropolitan cities in coastal areas: San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, etc. The categories of scores listed above for Step 1 and the impact on matching applies to Step 2 CK as well.
Do know however, that the mean scores for Step 2 are generally approximately points higher for Step 2 CK, so all the categories and score boundaries discussed above regarding Step 1 should be increased by 10 points. Remember, for any student who experiences a bad test day, a bad test, an interrupted study period, etc.
Also, many program directors are well aware that Step 2 CK is a much better indicator of the type of intern you will be as compared to Step 1. Think of your residency application process in two steps. The "paper you" gives a lot of information, but the "paper you" is not all of you. But for everyone, a good interview where you display courtesy, kindness, interest, respect, humane qualities, asking insightful questions, etc. These variables tend to be used for making finer distinctions — when all else between potential candidates seems equal in comparison.
Nevertheless, these class C variables should not be ignored, and in some cases, some Class C variables can sometimes rise to a Class B criteria in importance. For instance, research-oriented fields e.