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Worried I Failed Step 1

Discussion in 'Step I' started by schizosquirrel, May 25, 2012.

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  1. schizosquirrel

    schizosquirrel

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    I've heard of people walking out of Step 1 and feeling like they failed. But, I really think I did.

    Quick Background: Studied for 6 weeks. Was pretty weak at the beginning (First NBME 210), but was averaging between 235-245 the last 2 weeks on 3 NBME exams so I felt OK about things. My goal was 240 with the idea that I'd be fine if I at least got a 230.

    Actual Exam: Just got really, incredibly nervous. Really long passages with a lot of images. Heavy neuro focus which is my weakpoint (one section had maybe 25 neuro questions alone). I usually had 30 minutes on the NBME to check over answers and go over tricky questions. On many of these I had less than 8 minutes. The physiology was all really tricky and I had a lot of material that wasn't really in First Aid (some of it rote regurgitation of obscure facts where elimination of wrong answers wasn't really possible). I was expecting it to be harder than the NBMEs and I was expecting not to know a lot of questions. There were maybe 5 on each section that I had to flat-out guess on. Everyone has this problem, I understand- I'm fine getting tricky questions wrong, because I know everyone else who was scoring 235-245 on NBME's has similar prep to me.

    My main worry is, I was so nervous from the whole event that I know I ended up mis-reading passages (caught myself a few times), getting things confused I normally wouldn't, and forgetting easy facts and missing a ton of questions that might have even been considered "gimmees". I've already made a list and can identify maybe 40 questions on the exam I'm pretty confident I got wrong (+ the bajillion other ones that you can't remember afterwards). I sometimes made silly mistakes like this on the NBME, but I get the feeling that my actual exam was 10x worse.

    Anyway, I'm terrified I failed the exam. And, even if I didn't fail, facing a score in the upper 190s/ low 200s where my residency options will be so few. This is especially embarrassing, as I go to a Top 10 school where everyone seems to do really well on this exam and exudes confidence on everything. Not sure what to do, just was curious as to how other people felt after their exam? And, if I'm over-reacting or if I should really just prepare for the worst?
    Last edited: May 25, 2012
  2. alternatego

    alternatego

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    If you were scoring like that on your NBME's, then most probably yes, you are overreacting.
  3. herewego

    herewego

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    I'm sorry to hear that you feel like you didnt do well. I haven't taken it yet, I take it in a few days.but the fact that you had THAT many neuro questions scares the hell out of me. I just changed my study schedule for teh final few days to accomodate a review of neuro, so thank you for sharing.
  4. schizosquirrel

    schizosquirrel

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    The issue is that on the NBMEs I didn't make a whole lot of silly mistakes. On the real exam, I definitely answered a lot incorrect that I was kicking myself for 10 minutes later. Like really easy questions (i.e. treatment for afib or something easy like that). I just felt like my peers didn't describe being as nervous as I was and I'm worried it SERIOUSLY affected my performance. I'm was OK with the idea that there would be hard questions that I wouldn't know. That happens to everyone. But, when I'm missing 20 easy questions because of nerves, I'm terrified my score is going to be much much lower.

    It'd just be nice to hear that this is something other test takers have encountered and that it's normal (or at least, not abnormal) to feel like you did really poorly.
  5. Ahmed786

    Ahmed786 New Member

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    Dude. Chill out. It's over. Go celebrate. What people are going to say on here one way or the other isn't going to affect your score, in fact, nothing will its already done. Finito. Fin. There's no point in stressing over it because you have absolutely no control anymore so might as well enjoy the next 4 weeks instead of stressing :thumbup:
  6. johndoe3344

    johndoe3344

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    You didn't fail.

    With an NBME average of ~240, I can guarentee you didn't fail. There are plenty of people who walked out thinking like they failed, and ended up scoring 250+ (just go read through past years' score experiences thread). It all depends on the curve. Granted, having a lot of sections on your weak area might mean you did relatively worse compared to if the test was hard, but concentrated in your strong areas, but still, the lowest you'd get is like a high 220. AT WORST. Please rest assured, and enjoy your next six weeks, and you can feel free to track me down and scream at me if you do fail (which you won't, so I'm pretty confident in giving you permission to scream at me if you do).
  7. schizosquirrel

    schizosquirrel

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    Well...my NBME average wasn't 240. I think I got a 235, 238 and 242 my last 2 weeks on practice exams. These were also taken in the library, where I was relaxed and I had 20-30 minutes to check each section and re-do each problem (even if I hadn't marked it).

    I just really slipped up on easy questions on the exam...like just went blank about a lot of things (even questions I thought were relatively fair). I also went back and remembered about 30-40 of the questions I was unsure about and almost all of them I got wrong after looking them up. My guess is 15-20 questions/block wrong...which even at a liberal measurement is a score in the 60%'s on the exam (which, from what I can tell, is barely passing). I was literally marking 20 questions on most blocks. And unsure of a lot of other ones.

    I also feel like the people on here over-exaggerate difficulty. (to them, marking 10 questions/block means they think they failed because they were used to getting 90% on NBMEs).

    Anyway, I do appreciate the encouragement though.
  8. mmmcdowe

    mmmcdowe Duke of minimal vowels Moderator Gold Donor

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    You didn't fail, and when you come back in a few weeks to report your score I will make sure to remind you of this thread ;)

  9. schizosquirrel

    schizosquirrel

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    Sorry for bringing this up again. Been totally neurotic/depressed since this exam. Made a list of questions I thought/know I got wrong. Counted them and about 25(!) of them are from silly mistakes resulting from nerves. I was just so stressed out during the exam. In retrospect, I think my exam was probably easier than I initially thought. Total 55 I think I got wrong from what I can count so far (so already down 15% on the test just from those I can remember...and I can imagine there are many many more). Yes, I know it's neurotic to keep lists like this.

    Anyway what is generally a a % correct that you need to get at least a 220? I know each exam is different. But on NBME's it seemed like a 80% was more in the 210's range. I'm worried I'm shooting somewhere between 65%-80% on my exam.
  10. rocketbooster

    rocketbooster

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    80% was 220 on NBME 11 and 12, which are some of the newest tests. Sooo, I'm sure 80% on the real test is at least a 220. I heard the real test is harder and thus likely has a more generous curve. In that case, I would expect a 220 to be a little less than 80% but no one knows for sure.
  11. SnowyRox

    SnowyRox Pennwe c/o 2016

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    What is worrying going to accomplish?

    Now chill.

    I understand this is a career defining test but obsessing over it isn't going to help anything. Either start studying for a retake or let it be and focus on your next move.
  12. ganimedes

    ganimedes

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    Hey! I just took mine and im on the same boat. already know i got at least 25 wrong questions. what did u ended up getting?
  13. san2

    san2

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    My test when I took it ages ago was heavy on neuro also. Spending a solid 4 days on neuro is totally worth it. Doing kaplan, fa, uworld, and k qbank for neuro saved me on exam day
  14. san2

    san2

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    What?? 80% is like a 230. 70-75% is a 220 i think
  15. Boardz

    Boardz

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    thank god i didn't do kaplan or k qbank or I think I would've failed step 1 and had to transfer from a u.s. med school to one in mongolia.
  16. ruiner

    ruiner

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    Not correct.
  17. BlueElmo

    BlueElmo

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    What is it then? Is 80% 240?
  18. alternatego

    alternatego

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    Did OP pass? he/she never posted again
  19. san2

    san2

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    thats the idea I got when I took it a little more than 2 years ago. 80% was about a 230
  20. Belleza156

    Belleza156

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    Remember the exam is 10-20% experimental questions that don't weigh into your score.

    I took my exam a few days ago, and I have no idea how to feel about it. I highly doubt I failed, but I could easily gave scored 210 or 250, I have no freaking clue. I missed quite a few gimmee questions because of overthinking or being in a rush. But then again I answred a bunch correct that I don't even know how I knew the answer.

    I'm sure its the same scenario for you. Try to count how many you got right and obsess about it from a more positive angle. 80% was around a 220-230 in nbmes but ALL the questions counted there. So who knows what percentage is a 230 in the real exam, but its most likely under 70%.

    Sent from my PC36100 using SDN Mobile
  21. ruiner

    ruiner

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    Other way around. Sorry wasn't trying to be a jerk, just didn't want to elaborate too much haha. My percentage was an 81 and I was under 230
  22. demo123456

    demo123456

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    How do you know what percentage raw corresponds to which three digit score? I'm pretty sure they don't release that info.
  23. Aclamity

    Aclamity

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    Your two-digit score is neither your percentage nor your percentile bro.
  24. ruiner

    ruiner

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    thanks bro
  25. rocketbooster

    rocketbooster

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    Why did this thread get so many replies? Go read the Step 1 results forum. Nearly half of the ppl on there said the exact same thing as you coming out of their tests. Go read that thread and find their later posts where they report their real score.

    Part of me wants to a type out a detailed response to make you feel better, but I just don't have the energy after OB night shift all week and especially since this has been answered a bajillion times on that thread. Go read it.
  26. phd89

    phd89

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    if you don't mind me asking when are you scores coming out

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