5 days til doom

Discussion in 'Step I' started by BrisketAttack, Jun 12, 2008.

  1. BrisketAttack

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    with 5 days left, what's a man to do?

    more questions?

    try and do FA one more time?

    At the pace I've been going I cannot even dream to make it thru FA halfway.

    is there a cutoff point where people generally stop doing questions and focus solely on review?
     
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  3. virilep

    virilep What can Brown do for u?

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    You know, I was just thinking about this. The last 5 days I'm going to do the Penn Method last five days. I mean, in all reality it's just cramming I think. I wonder if the 5th day is actually the day before the test or should you "take a break" .. not sure.
     
  4. tfom08

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    What exactly is the Penn method for the last 5 days? It seems like most people say keep doing questions.
     
  5. BrisketAttack

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    Penn method? never heard of it. i really want to finish uworld. i think i'm going to do it. i was going to go back and do all path, then pharm, then biochem/embryo. but it's so daunting. not sure it'll yield much at this point anyway. i know i'll do pharm for sure.

    i took the nbme practice test today at prometric and got an f-ing 94%. nearly fell out of my chair. would be ecstatic if I can come within 10% of that on test day.
     
  6. virilep

    virilep What can Brown do for u?

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    just google penn method usmle
     
  7. The Angriest Bird

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    There is actually a cure for your paranoid/panic: just think about MCAT.

    When I started Step 1 prep 4 weeks ago, I told myself this: I'm not going to treat this exam as one that's going to CHANGE MY LIFE, because I've taken such an exam already, it's called the MCAT.

    Yes I'm nervous now, but it's not as nearly bad as the week before the MCAT. I spent 1 whole year on the MCAT, 3-4 hours everyday. The week before it I think I completed lost my taste sense ("tasteplegia" if you wish). For anything I put in my mouth I couldn't tell what it was. My stomach hurt and it's probably peptic ulcer. On my way to the test center, I had a feeling just to "f*** it" and turn back.

    But look, I'm here, in my dream medical school. I made it. I survived the MCAT. Why in the world should I panic for Step 1 after I have concurred MCAT, which is 100x more monstrous than Step 1?
     
  8. synapse lapse

    synapse lapse tokyo robotic

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    The MCAT isn't the exam to change your life, as much as you may have felt it was at the time (I'm sure we all did). Now most of us are saddled with a tremendous amount of debt, and have technical skills that are of limited use in other fields, most of which don't pay as well as medicine. As this test has huge bearing on our future job options (As unfortunate and silly as that it) I think it is much more important. If you hadn't gotten into med school, you would have had numerous other opportunities available to you. And I don't think most people studied for a year for the MCAT, nor is the MCAT more monstrous than step 1 (do you really believe that?).
     
  9. Lolo08

    Lolo08 Member

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    Getting into med school is the hardest part. Now finishing med school isn't all that bad, statistically speaking. >90% of people finish medical school, while only 50-60% of people get into medical school. I mean, if you can pass Step 1 you're most likely going to be a doctor. Maybe not in the specialty that you want, but you're still going to be a doc. The MCATs determined whether or not you could get into med school. And if most premeds were bio majors, they're severely hampered in their career choices as well. They can graduate and make $20,000 a year as a tech or go onto a PhD program that lasts 6 years, come out and be stuck in big pharma for the rest of their lives. I'd say the MCATs were more important.
     
  10. synapse lapse

    synapse lapse tokyo robotic

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    How many people will be satisfied with "being a doctor"? Life is about doing what you love, and for most people what they love encompasses only a few fields at most. Sure most people will pass, get their M.D., and go on to practice. Sure, they will make $150k minimum (not much), but that isn't enough for most people who enter med school. Most bio majors could have done something else if they had the grade to get to med school. Or yes, they could have gotten jobs that paid $30-40k. Regardless, the options are more open, and the debt load is less. I don't know about others, but I will have over $150k debt on graduation, and I worry about my ability to repay that. Let's say I choke on Step 1, and I don't match into the few fields I like, then what? I have to 1) leave medicine for a job in pharma, VC, consulting, etc. that will pay less but allow me to pay back loans 2) accept a field that is less desirable to me, live a life of misery, develop a coke habit, shoot myself in the head 3) do research, which I hate, waste more years trying to get into the field that makes me happy 4) pull a heist oceans 11 style and hope Terry Benedict doesn't find me. I don't know, from where I stand this test is a million times more important than a stupid MCAT.
     
  11. It'sElectric

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    I couldn't disagree more. How on earth can an exam that simply decides whether you get into medical school or not be more important than an exam that basically (No, not entirely...but neither did the MCAT) decides whether or not you'll get to do what you love for the rest of your life. So you get by and pass the exam, but completely limit yourself from having much of a shot at your top 3 career choices. You're now potentially stuck in a career that you either do NOT enjoy or are wholly underpaid for the services you provide. There are very few options for you now, because you've invested ~200,000 and 8+ years of your life.

    If you don't make it into medical school - big deal. It seemed like a big deal at 22/23, but in the grand scheme of things it really wasn't. Chances are you are bright enough and even ambitious enough to work towards another career that would pay as well (if not better) and provide you with a similar degree of satisfaction.

    You would have to be crazy to pretend this exam derives less importance than the MCAT.
     
  12. alpha06

    alpha06 Senior Member
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    Although yes it is hard to get into med school. Its not the worst thing that could happen. Once you get in, you have to figure out what kind of physician you want to be. And to help you make that decision is Step 1. Take it lightly and you can end up in a city/town with a specialty you're unhappy with ON TOP of a major debt of medical loans and a tremendous waste of 8 years of your life.

    At least if you don't get into med school you have other options. Once you're in, its another story. And being that Step 1 is the biggest hurdle, I think I would take it more seriously.

    Just a thought....:rolleyes:


    To the OP: More questions and more review. Do both until the very end. Hit it hard the last few days. And then the last day, a light review of everything.
     
  13. Instatewaiter

    Instatewaiter But... there's a troponin

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    Since you cant get through all of FA, might as well pick out a few high yield areas you feel week in and focus on those.

    I feel that in your wrap up phase you should cut down on the questions but still do some everyday to keep you fresh and thinking.
     
  14. The Angriest Bird

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    For people like me, who REALLY want to become a doctor, becoming a doctor is much much more important than becoming what kind of doctor. Therefore, MCAT is 100x more monstrous than Step I. Of course, it is only for people like me. A lot of people don't care that much.

    That's still not bad. If you try to make 150k outside medicine, you really need to work your butt off and the outcome isn't as nearly as guaranteed as medical school, in which you pass exams you make 150k.

    That is so unwise that I doubt anyone would do that.

    First of all, I believe the words-of-wisdom that "you never know what you want to do before 3rd year." I also believe for most people there doesn't exist a specialty for which if they don't match into they'd kill themselves or really pissed. Exceptions definitely exist.

    We can all say this for the simple fact that we have passed MCAT and got into medical school, which is not the default pathway. Find a friend who get bumped out of medical school by doing bad on the MCAT, he/she will yell at you when you say "Step 1 is more important than MCAT." He/she would tell you "if you let me get into medical school I wouldn't give a **** to Step 1."

    By all means we are taking Step I very very seriously. But I still insist on saying MCAT >>> Step I.
     
  15. Proverbs31

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    I really could care less whether either of you thinks the MCAT or the USMLE is harder, that all relative to perspective---but what does seem to make me sad is to hear all of you say that based solely on this Exam -USMLE- you either get to do what you love or you dont. Thats the biggest piece of "Cop-out and blame" I have ever heard. This is not directed to the quoted person...but in general to all who think that. I cant tell you how many people I know didnt recieve the score they wanted on the USMLE and are still doing what they love. You can say its the exception all you want-BUT If you work hard enough at what you do and are good enough at what you do-then people have to notice. Thats your third and fourth year. You cant find something wrong with something who's that good--and thats based on your actions. Second---You dont get your top pick or worse yet you dont match---You make do...you do whatever it takes to put you where you need to be. I STRONGLY disagree with anyone who dares say that based on this test they will be happy or unhappy for the rest of your life. You make that decision -not a test. But what is pathetic is when people go into fields that dont make them happy and you dont try to use all your resources to make it something that you love and respect---Thats where we get "Pieces of **** doctors" ...theres plenty out there...People become complacent in what they do and they dont care so they make mistakes and treat patients like pay checks solely. Seriously if thats gonna be any of you get out of medicine now and save everyone a favor.
    I had a friend who wanted derm....He didnt match in it...took a transition year...busted his butt and made as many connections as he could. Worked hard and got it the second year...Not in his favorite location but hey-its only for a residency and hes doing what he loves. Where there is a will there is ALWAYS a way. Thats the difference between successful people and the rest. Everyone didnt always have it paved in gold to where they are...but they all made it happen and stayed positive and focused. Whether you can or you cant-YOU ARE ABSOLUTELY CORRECT! Sorry if this sounds harsh, but Ive experienced this so much in my own life, that nothing will change my mind about this fact. I hope that all of you will keep that attitude and always stay passionate and do what you love because when you stop doing what you love you actually hurt yourself and most importantly the patients who come to see you.
    A good test score helps but its not the only factor...thats just an excuse from someone who copped out and isn't putting forth his best effort anymore.
     
    #14 Proverbs31, Jun 13, 2008
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2008
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  17. 45408

    45408 aw buddy

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    More like 5 days til glory! Think of your reputation on SDN - shoot, around all the residency directors - when the first 295 EVAR comes back!
     
  18. Proverbs31

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    hahah! I think I love you! :) Perfect
     
  19. It'sElectric

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    Take...a...deep...breath. I, and I assume others, was simply debating the other side of the story. I apologize if I came off as such, but I was in no way implying that if you get a 205 on Step I, you're doomed to never do what you love. Of course there are other ways to make it, but it's going to be an infinitely more difficult path. We're medical students, so it's not like any of us are afraid of hard work, but who here wants to do extra work 'just because'.

    Like I said before, the MCAT meant very little in the grand scheme of things. 8+ years in and ~200 grand in debt automatically makes Step 1 exponentially more important in my mind.

    No matter what score I end up with, you can rest assured that I will be working my ass off the next 2 years to solidify my future.
     
  20. alpha06

    alpha06 Senior Member
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    Whoa...whoa.....ok.....take it easy. :(

    No harm, no foal.

    I'm just saying that when I took the MCAT, it was the major determining factor for me getting into med school. As a matter of fact, I didn't get into med school the first year I applied after undergrad. I essentially went into a pre-med program where I took classes and prepared to take the MCAT again. They said if I don't improve my MCAT score, I was a goner.

    The same goes for Step 1, it is a major factor for residency programs. BUT its not the only one. Believe me, I too will bust my a** off in the clinics and with the help of making great connections and going to different hospitals, I will be where I want to be. And be a d**n good doctor too. In the end, it is all up to you. The total package.

    I'm just saying it can't hurt having a stellar Step 1 score.
     
  21. opb

    opb

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    Well it seems that this thread has gotten a little off topic. So in an attempt to help our friend BrisketAttack out during these last (but important) days, I'll share what I did.

    But before I get to that let me just add my two cents in on the previous posts :)D) by saying that everything is relative. Remember back when the SAT was the most important test in your life because it determines what college you go to? Or back when getting really good grades in undergrad was the most important thing to getting into med school? Then after that how the MCAT was the most important test you'll ever take? Then after that how doing well in M1-M2 was important? And now how Step 1 is the biggest test we'll ever take? But it doesn't stop there because next we'll say how M3 and M4 evals will make or break our residency hopes. And so on and so on... I'm not trying to be disrespectful of others' opinions... I"m just providing another perspective.

    Now back to the original topic at hand. This was actually what I did during the last 7 or 8 days before my test, so at this point it may be a little moot for you, BrisketAttack. I basically reviewed everything, taking 1 day to do questions and two systems (anatomy, physio, path, and pharm of each). I would start the day off on a system, do 50 questions with review, then tackle the next system. I tried to organize it so that my system reviews were somewhat related (cardio, renal, and pulmonary, endocrine with repro, psych and neuro, etc.). I was able to finish my review and question bank with 2 days to go. I spent the last two days cramming the subject sections of FA, going over pharm flash cards, and cramming some micro tables I had made during the school year. I actually didn't do any questions during the last 2 days (since my subscription had expired by then), but I didn't feel that it had any effect come test time. I stopped studying before dinner the day before, and just watched TV and tried to get some rest.

    Again this info might be a bit late, but hopefully it's somewhat helpful.
     
  22. Proverbs31

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    I havent taken it yet, BUT I have heard reading over Goljans Blue Boxes (side notes) in RR path is dead on and leaves you with a lot of the HY stuff in your mind. Also his notes if you can get a hold of them are supposed to be good. Review the Pharm/Micro and the Biochem Fast facts that are the nit picking things. Glance over your pics in HY Neuro or whatever you use for images. Good Luck to you!! Go in confident...youve busted your butt for this! You'll do great! Good Luck!
     

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