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Basic exam 2016

Discussion in 'Anesthesiology' started by caveat87, Jun 12, 2016.

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  1. caveat87

    caveat87 7+ Year Member

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    Aug 15, 2008
    Not gonna discuss specifics here obviously, but anyone else think this test focused on a bunch of clinically irrelevant factoids? I left feeling pretty frustrated that I had to lay down a guess on so many questions despite prepping hard with M5 and Miller.
     
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  3. Carabas

    Carabas 2+ Year Member

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    May 7, 2013
    So much so. As if you're somehow expected to know the first step in mopping a bottle of sevo.
     
    DrZzZz and sheeed like this.
  4. secants

    secants about:blank 10+ Year Member

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    I did both true learn and m5 and thought m5 just wasn't tailored for this exam, truelearn was much more useful. More anatomy than I thought, a lot of annoying neuro monitoring questions but otherwise I agree with the above the questions asked just seemed tangential to what should be on an anesthesia basic exam.
     
  5. rishk789

    rishk789 "Anesthesia" 7+ Year Member

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    Congrats on finishing, everyone! :claps:
     
  6. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    I totally agree. I did passmachine, m5, and true learn. I also did the pharma and physiology parts in Hall. I was not able to answer half of the questions without guessing. I am not saying I am a great test taker but I definitely did abov2 2000 questions for this exam and could not answer most of the questions. The question about Acupuncture? The questions about sevo on the floor? Or how about the question on female resident fertility.

    I think it is unacceptable to ask tricky and difficult questions like the ones I had to deal with. We have passed all of our USMLEs to get to where we are today. Those tests were made to test our standardized test taking skills and basically get rid of the weaklings. The basic exam was unnecessarily difficult and very tricky. This exam was a waste of time and money and I will be lucky if I pass. It is as if the ABA looked at truelearn.com, M5, and Hall and asked us questions that were not mentioned in either. When you do that it does not test basic anesthesia knowledge. What is does is deliberately try and fail residents so that they can resit for the exam and pay another 880$. What the morons in the ABA don't seem to understand is that this is a dumb strategy to make money. I say dumb because it is as if they do not understand that we work so many hours and do not have the time to study "hardcore" for a test like this. I honestly believe that many people will fail this exam unless there is a curve and what this will essentially do is make the field of Anesthesia less powerful which in turn will only help the CRNAs take over like they already are doing. Less anesthesia residents=less rooms filled=more CRNAs filling in.

    Anesthesiology has always been run but a bunch of money seeking, cocky, and ignorant doctors (trust me, I had dinner with one of them who came as a guest speaker). The reasons CRNAs exist today is because of our stupidity which obviously is continuing.

    You may think I am bitter for getting bent over like I did on that exam but what I am saying is the truth.

    The fact that I probably will get the same score if I didn't study is what pisses me off. I genuinely enjoyed studying for this exam as I really felt that I knew my anesthesia for me level. I was ready to put that on paper until I sat for the bull**** test. If the ABA wants to test our "basic knowledge" that they should make us take a "basic exam" and not so obscure and poorly written exam with questions so out of left field that the question writer probably didn't know how to answer. Shameful
     
    signumvitalis likes this.
  7. otis86

    otis86 2+ Year Member

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    hey i gave the basic exam 2 days ago, as well. Came out of it pretty confused. I think this is an across the board feeling of just general frustration of what they were asking.
     
  8. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    If the ABA wants us to sit for big exams like this during our CA1 year, the VERY LEAST they can do is make the test fair...that is just common sense.
     
  9. Arantius

    Arantius ASA Member 2+ Year Member

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    I too am frustrated after taking it. Studied a LOT for this exam and I don't even feel like I studied the right things. I probably would have been better off spending time with my family and relaxing after long OR days than doing all the ACE questions, true learn, etc. etc. etc.
     
  10. Robotic Wis-Hipple

    Robotic Wis-Hipple

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    Guys, I took the first Basic exam and will be taking the first Advanced exam next month. I agree with the sentiment, a lot of questions that don't seem relevant at all and those that you would have never studied if you took 3 months off to prep for it. It's frustrating, but it's also the same exact test for all. They aren't failing many people and I assure you all your colleagues thought the same thing. But my point is, you'll do fine, and just get used to it, the focus on vague random keywords is going to dominate your last 2 years despite them being horrible.

    Oh, and think about this, you'll be taking an ITE that is based on all subject matter next year and 3rd year despite having passed the basic and therefore the ITE not representing the test you'll take as a CA-3.
     
  11. easternether

    easternether

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    I agree the question on female fertility was ridiculous as was the acupuncture question. I did anesthesiaqbank and the passmachine. I stayed away from m5, and true learn. I'm glad I did. I thought the explanations in anesthesiqbank were pretty good and more focused and the pass machine had relevant material.
     
  12. MaximusD

    MaximusD Anatomically Incorrect 10+ Year Member

    Overall, I felt it was a fair exam. There were some obnoxious questions with *NO RIGHT ANSWER LISTED*, but I do expect some of those questions to be thrown out when they do their fancy its-gotta-take-a-month-to-do statistical analyses. I used TrueLearn, Pass Machine and a local prep company's notes to study. We'll see if I pass, but I felt confident enough exiting the exam.
     
  13. MaximusD

    MaximusD Anatomically Incorrect 10+ Year Member

    I will agree that we have some very elite-minded individuals holding the keys to this profession, but I do like that we are challenged to critically evaluate our knowledge in a non-standard way. I would "hold your horses" on burning down the house until you find out if you've passed!

    What I don't like is that the test-writers INTENTIONALLY use double negatives. That tests my ability to reword the question, not my ability to recall and utilize relevant clinical information. It is a crappy way to administer an examination, IMO. This should end.
     
  14. MalloryWeiss

    MalloryWeiss ASA Member 2+ Year Member

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    So is it safe to say the advanced exam won't include the same "basic" anesthesia topics covered on this test? Or will the advanced exam be comprehensive and have both basic & advanced topics?
     
  15. Robotic Wis-Hipple

    Robotic Wis-Hipple

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    You can look at the aba content outline but iirc only like 15% of advanced exam questions will be basic concepts.
     
  16. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    Can anyone explain to me how to post or start a new thread in this website ? I wanted to start a thread about the basic exam and can't seem to find a link or option to start a new thread. Thanks.
     
  17. Arch Guillotti

    Arch Guillotti Senior Member Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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    The "Post New Thread" button.
     
  18. sheeed

    sheeed ASA Member 7+ Year Member

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    TruLearn was the q bank to use for this test. M5 didn't have may have made life slightly more difficult for this exam but there were def several verbatim repeats from tru learn.

    4-5 questions on airway anatomy as well which I thought was a lot.

    Most of the questions seemed fair. But those questions like the scenario with a spilled bottle of sevo? Just had to guess. Hopefully it's thrown out
     
  19. otis86

    otis86 2+ Year Member

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    Jun 9, 2013
    I disagree, I studied word for word from Trulearn. There were a few easy grab questions that were TruLearn style, but the majority of these questions were vague and unrelevant.
     
  20. DesiredMemberName?

    DesiredMemberName? ASA Member

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    Doing well (top 10%) on these exams is all about nailing the straightforward questions and having enough knowledge/understanding to make good guesses on the oddball questions. It sucks not being 100% certain of the answers when you have prepared so thoroughly, but the more thorough your preparation, the better your guesses. Well-prepared test-takers don't even realize the amount of bread and butter material they cruised through on the exam because they are focused on the minority of oddball questions that caused them anxiety. It's probably the people missing the bread and butter that are at risk for failing the exam.
     
  21. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    I memorized all of true learn. I would be lying if I didn't say that indeed there were questions that were word for word from true learn but those questions can be counted on a maximum of two hands. As I explained above, we all made it to anesthesia because we have the brains and also the test taking skills as you wouldn't be in anesthesia if you did not perform well on the USMLE. With that in mind it is the duty of the ABA to make tests that are not only fair but also RELEVANT. The key word is revelant. If I somehow pass this exam I sincerely do not feel that I was tested in regards to how well I know my "basic anesthesia". I do not and will not have the feeling that my basic skills were tested appropriately as many questions had nothing to do with anesthesia nor its fundamentals.

    For example, someone please explain to me how knowing what second messenger correlates to how I am going to be a better anesthesiologist? We needed to know second messengers and biochemistry for STEP 1. We all obviously passed step one therefor why on earth are we being tested on it ?

    The ABA should have tested us on stuff that is relevant to our practice and not only minute details that simply don't matter. I'm not asking for the test to be easy but the objective should be to test individuals on high yield material that we absolutely need to know. Another example would be the million and one questions on IV fluids. In our CA1 year we use LR, NS, plasmylate, and maybe dextrose containing fluids. We have to know every detail about these fluids as we are anesthesiologists. With that being said, the ABA tested us on fluids like normosmol (first time I ever hear of this fluid). What benefit does that do? What that does is make you get the question wrong... That's what that does. If you get the questions about LR and NS wrong than it is fair to say that you did not prepare well and failure on this exam shouldn't be a shock. But to get a question on some random crap like acupuncture for instance does not test if I learned anything in my CA1 year.

    Now many of you may disagree and say that I'm talking out of my ass which I may be doing but the fact of the matter is that this exam was created to test our basic understanding of first year anesthesia. What I personally felt was that this exam tested my test taking skills which is horse**** because that is what the USMLE was created for. Further this exam tested me on minute, specific, and unimportant questions. Those of us who are banking on numerous questions being thrown out should be mad because this examination in its entirety should be solve able and all questions should be fair and yes ALL residents should pass if they studied properly. We have all proven ourselves already as we have made it this far.
     
  22. otis86

    otis86 2+ Year Member

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    Jun 9, 2013
    i agree, but i can recall missing at least 6-7 easy questions because i was so frustrated with the exam content and the questions that made your mind go blank.
     
  23. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    Jun 13, 2016
    I think if is fair to say that you and I had the same exact exam experience.
     
  24. vector2

    vector2 ASA Member 10+ Year Member

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    Isolyte = plasmalyte = normosol for all intents and purposes. Just different manufacturers/brandnames.

    ABA likes testing biochem because they know every resident had a huge basic science knowledge dump after finishing step 1, and cause they don't want you sounding like the ICU nurse I heard about the other day who told her patient that his beta blocker works by slowing down the beta cells in the heart. A consultant anesthesiologist should be a stud in applied pharm and phys, and unfortunately for us test takers, biochem is the foundation of both.

    And just FYI, obscure questions about conformational changes in GABAa receptors, sodium channels, neurotransmitters, NMJ, sympa/parasympathetic nervous system, chemoreceptors, baroreceptors, haldane/bohr effect etc never go away. (although I'm hoping they will on the advanced exam I'm taking next month)
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2016
    PressureSupport and ktm like this.
  25. linkin06

    linkin06 We are all witnesses. 7+ Year Member

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    did you read all the explanations? i thought maybe the questions weren't verbatim, but overall the content seemed to be fitting.
     
  26. otis86

    otis86 2+ Year Member

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    Jun 9, 2013
    Should be 2 more weeks till results !!
     
  27. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    Jun 13, 2016
    Anyone have an idea of when in June ?
     
  28. xtina0

    xtina0 5+ Year Member

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    they weren't released last year until july 14??? where did you guys hear june
     
  29. rishk789

    rishk789 "Anesthesia" 7+ Year Member

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    Houston, TX
    Physician
    I took the exam last year and got my results back in mid-July 2015. My program informed us about scoring in the top 10 percent many months later (January 2016), but I'm not sure when the ABA actually calculates and releases this info. Good luck everyone! :luck:
     
  30. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    I called then yesterday and they told me min 6 weeks to a max of 8 weeks. So probably mid June. God speed.
     
  31. otis86

    otis86 2+ Year Member

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    Jun 9, 2013
    6 weeks?? I heard 3 weeks
     
  32. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    Yeah Otis. Should be mid July per the lady I spoke with on the phone from the ABA. I would rather it come earlier because I just want to find out if I passed or not. The anxiety sucks.
     
  33. signumvitalis

    signumvitalis 2+ Year Member

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    so afraid :( felt really shaky walking out of this one at the end.
     
  34. criticalelement

    criticalelement Banned Banned Account on Hold 2+ Year Member

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    Now you re talking.. Do not ever give a red cent to the ASA or any state society.. I havent in over a dozen years!! ******* em!!
     
  35. AdmiralChz

    AdmiralChz ASA Member 7+ Year Member

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    Yep, this was true for our program as well. The programs are actually informed about top 10% rankings upon release of results. That being said, unlike the ITE the awesome thing about the Basic Exam is that it truly is just a pass/fail no number attached - it is simply a check box. I know there were and continue to be reservations from the ABA about releasing information regarding high scores as it could be used in fellowship/job applications which is not the intention. More important is the bottom 10% which is also released by the ABA - the purpose being to inform programs of people who are at risk going forward (during the Advanced exam, primarily). Such information, again, is not intended for jobs or fellowships but for programs to discuss with the resident to figure out if there is anything that can be done to help study habits or knowledge gaps!
     
  36. 2Fast2Des

    2Fast2Des to become No One, one must be PP slick

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    Would have been nice if I got a chance to reserve studying to the relevant rotation I was or get involved with other projects and stuff, but no we had to study to not fail this nonsensical exam. Why don't CRNA's have the same level of exams?
     
  37. partydoc

    partydoc 7+ Year Member

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    Because they are not doctors
     
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  38. 2Fast2Des

    2Fast2Des to become No One, one must be PP slick

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    They do the same/more advanced cases where I'm at, quite a few times getting getting the better cases while residents are sometimes placed in the back burner, its hard to justify feeling like residency means something...
     
  39. wickedskillz

    wickedskillz ASA Member 5+ Year Member

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    it'll get better after CA1 year. You are being trained to be able to independently manage difficult cases and act like a consultant, not just follow orders. Wait til you start doing bigger cases, are given more autonomy by your attendings to make your own decidions and run the board by yourself. It's a lot different that just sitting in the room.
     
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  40. Physio Doc 2 Be

    Physio Doc 2 Be Supratentorial problems 10+ Year Member

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    Anybody else get really excited about the email from [email protected] today? And then really disappointed shortly thereafter?
     
  41. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    I wouldn't call it excited. I would call it terrified. I didn't do well at all.
     
  42. Dredge MD

    Dredge MD

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    So, did everyone get that email? Did anyone get a score in their email? I'm hoping they changed things up this year and are mailing everyone their scores and performance report, not just people that failed or are in the top 10%.
     
  43. DilaudidDreams

    DilaudidDreams 2+ Year Member

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    I did not get a score, did anyone get a score pass or fail?
     
  44. Physio Doc 2 Be

    Physio Doc 2 Be Supratentorial problems 10+ Year Member

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    Nope. Just an email that says "update your address before July 12th so we can mail you your scores."
     
  45. otis86

    otis86 2+ Year Member

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    Jun 9, 2013
    Wait do we get an email or letter first??
     
  46. partydoc

    partydoc 7+ Year Member

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    west of the mid
    Email. Official letter later
     
  47. DilaudidDreams

    DilaudidDreams 2+ Year Member

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    was wondering if anyone knew whether the passrate will stay around 96% or if they are going to make it tougher. Additionally from speaking to older residents sounds like the pass mark was around 60-62% does anyone know if this will stay the same?

    Im planning on calling them tomorrow and asking, will update then.
     
  48. keepitcoming

    keepitcoming

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    I sincerely hope you are mistaken. Not sure how you did that math on that one but 4/10 failing doesn't seem very plausible. There would be an uproar in the anesthesia community if that was the case. I think the toughest year out of all was when the pass rate was 88%. Please update us with further info if you get any. Something tells me that the little old lady that picks up the phone over at the ABA will not be very helpful...
     
  49. POW16

    POW16 7+ Year Member

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    I think he meant the number of questions correct.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G920A using Tapatalk
     
  50. David Moss

    David Moss 2+ Year Member

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    Boston, MA
    I have posted the latest information about pass rates for the basic exam from the ABA at:

    http://www.anesthesiahub.com/sites/writtenboards


     
  51. DilaudidDreams

    DilaudidDreams 2+ Year Member

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    Ya i was referring to the percentage correct required to pass. Would be interesting to know as I am one of those people who unfortunately looks up all the answers after and thus know a ton of questions i missed. Has made me very paranoid and anxious.
     

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