About the ads

USMLE - Behavioral Science - I NEED YOUR ADVICE!

Discussion in 'Step I' started by Phloston, Mar 23, 2012.

  1. SDN is a nonprofit organization. Services are made possible through the generous support of SDN members and sponsors. Thank you.
  1. Phloston

    Phloston SDN Lifetime Donor Lifetime Donor

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2012
    Messages:
    2,565
    Location:
    Australia
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member

    SDN Members don't see this ad. (About Ads)
    I'm ~1500 questions through the USMLE Rx Qbank at this point and have a cumulative performance of 85%, except I have been struggling with epidemiology, psychiatry and behavioral science questions. My breakdown-percentages for those latter three, so far, are 82, 80 and 73, respectively.

    I've had no problem with questions that involve best-response/best-action scenarios, but any involving study-design type and biostatistics are comparatively weak for me.

    I would normally just stick with the questions and hope for gradual improvement, but I was recently just doing a string of them, 26 of which I had correct in a row, then got a simple four-answer choice question about cohort studies wrong that 66% of people got right. This is really exasperating, and I'm realizing that I need to possibly remediate with a resource external to FA and the QBanks.

    I'm aware of BRS and HY Behavioral Science, as well as HY Biostatistics, but does anyone have any experience with any of these resources / advice that may help me out here?

    Thanks,

    ~Phloston
  2. hoodfigga1

    hoodfigga1

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Messages:
    25
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    not sure how much time you have so i guess that is the biggest factor.....i would recommend kaplan's behavioral science videos if you still have some time (i am def not a proponent of kaplan videos usually but they did a few subjects well). i did them while following along in BRS (which i think is overkill IMO). i havent taken the exam yet so obviously im not the best authority but these resources have been more than good enough for me on uworld/kaplans qbanks.
  3. Phloston

    Phloston SDN Lifetime Donor Lifetime Donor

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2012
    Messages:
    2,565
    Location:
    Australia
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    I've found I learn best from questions, so I just purchased BRS Behavioral Science and HY Biostatistics.

    No one's reviews that I had read online were specific enough about these resources with respect to the USMLE, so I'll have to figure this one out for myself.

    I plan on spending a solid week (>40 hours) on those two books once I finish USMLE Rx, before proceeding to Kaplan QBank.
  4. uncgrad2002

    uncgrad2002

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2011
    Messages:
    11
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    This HAS to be a troll. PLEASE let this be a troll.
  5. Phloston

    Phloston SDN Lifetime Donor Lifetime Donor

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2012
    Messages:
    2,565
    Location:
    Australia
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    For everybody reading this post, I've done some workup on this uncgrad2002 character, and look at this post he's made about having been arrested twice and concern about applying for medicine:

    http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=868165
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2012
  6. womp

    womp

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2009
    Messages:
    1,123
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    I feel real good when I get over 70% on UWorld, and here is this mofo complaining about 83% blocks.

    Jailbait.
  7. MrBeauregard

    MrBeauregard Soon-to-be PGY-1

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    Messages:
    623
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    ^^^ He's actually getting 85% on USMLERx, not UWorld, which is much different.

    OP,
    Your best bet would be to do read HY Biostats and BRS Behavioral. I've found that the best way to answer these questions is by actually doing questions. You can memorize a bunch of crap, but it can be tough to apply it. I find it best to pay close attention to the question stem and note exactly how things are worded. Sometimes that makes a big difference and usually can make the answers quite clear, especially if you're remotely familiar with the material.
  8. NightSwim

    NightSwim Stressed Applicant

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Messages:
    148
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    Isn't 85% insanely high for Rx though? I'm in the mid-60s on Rx, and this makes me worried. Gonna start World soon.
  9. MrBeauregard

    MrBeauregard Soon-to-be PGY-1

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    Messages:
    623
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Depends on if its random, timed blocks or studying a chapter and immediately doing a block specific to that material. But I think 85% is really high and excellent nonetheless.
  10. Phloston

    Phloston SDN Lifetime Donor Lifetime Donor

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2012
    Messages:
    2,565
    Location:
    Australia
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    I'm approaching Rx from tutor-mode, given that I feel its emphasis is more that of reinforcing FA rather than actually modeling the true exam.

    Nonetheless, I still think, even in tutor-mode, that it's important to pick an answer in a target of <45 seconds. I've found that doing a block of questions and then going back to read all of the explanations at the end is both very draining and platitudinous. With tutor-mode, at least after having spent considerable time on the explanations and PrntScr FA images, one can look forward to the "fun and surprise" of a new, subsequent question, rather than just another mere explanation.

    I started USMLE Rx in early-January. I did ten 10-question blocks = 100 questions, and got exactly 67/100. I spent all of February strictly reading FA cover to cover (8-12 hrs/day), and have been getting between 80-96% on 48-question blocks since (subsequent ~1400 questions).

    I agree with some of the other posters that UWorld is likely very different from Rx, however I can at least vouch the fact that having memorized FA was definitely essential. I'd say about 3/7 of the questions I've been getting wrong in Rx are directly out of FA, and I merely hadn't retained the minutiae the first time; 3/7 have been based on info that is purely unique to the QBank (not in FA), and 1/7 have been just dumb mistakes.

    I read and memorized BRS Pathology before having started FA or Rx. This book has definitely helped path be a strong point.

    My strongest breakdowns are neuroanatomy and micro. Before I started Rx, I went through all of the Sanjiv Microcards, which were by far the best study tool I've ever used in med school. Last year, I had also gone through HY Neuroanatomy, which has definitely helped with the visualization of a lot of things.
  11. DrDJShik

    DrDJShik

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2008
    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    Chicago
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Do you spend time adding in information to FA from Rx explanations and the other books you read? I doing that as I go through my materials and Rx/world questions. I'm wondering if I'm just spending too much time and instead should try to go through FA cover to cover as you did
  12. Phloston

    Phloston SDN Lifetime Donor Lifetime Donor

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2012
    Messages:
    2,565
    Location:
    Australia
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    I think it's absolutely essential to annotate First Aid from USMLE Rx.

    In the final weeks, remember that you'll be re-re-re-re-re-re-memorizing FA to the core, and the annotations will recount a lot of the shock-factor info that you had encountered on your progression through the QBanks. By all means, FA is not as comprehensive as everyone makes it out to be. Absolutely annotate FA.

    As far as the cover to cover pass of FA is concerned, I believe that the quality of learning is augmented considerably more from questions that impose, as I said above, shock-value once you get them wrong. If you haven't gone through FA at least on first-pass, then a lot of the info that is simply in the book will be seen for the first time on the QBank, and instead of that info functioning as reinforcement, it will merely just instead translate into a game of playing catch up.

    It depends on how much time you have. If you are still far away from your exam, pause, and strictly read FA cover to cover, THEN start questions. If you are in the closing months, do both.

Share This Page


About the ads