Gr42

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My class will be taking the biochemistry shelf exam in less than a month so I was wondering if anyone had any input about the exam. Is it BRS better than NMS to study?? What are the most heavily and hard tested areas?? Has anyone taken it this year??
 

Pox in a box

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Gr42 said:
My class will be taking the biochemistry shelf exam in less than a month so I was wondering if anyone had any input about the exam. Is it BRS better than NMS to study?? What are the most heavily and hard tested areas?? Has anyone taken it this year??
Know population genetics. As the bare minimum, know the Hardy-Weinberg equation (p-squared + 2pq + q-squared = 1). I took it last year. Actually, an excellent resource would be the Genetics chapter in BRS Pathology. I'm sure everyone will be laughing at you reading a pathology book in first year and you'll from here on be labeled a gunner, but do it and you'll be set for those questions. Borrow one from a second year. That chapter is VERY high-yield and covers all the important genetic diseases you need to know (PKU, Gaucher disease, etc.).
 

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Gr42 said:
My class will be taking the biochemistry shelf exam in less than a month so I was wondering if anyone had any input about the exam. Is it BRS better than NMS to study?? What are the most heavily and hard tested areas?? Has anyone taken it this year??
 

Man In The Box

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Start working through BRS now and use First Aid in the days leading up to the test. Pox-in-the-Box is correct about genetics questions being fairly heavily represented on the exam which is unfortunate since many schools and review book authors (including BRS) don't consider it a biochemistry topic. Regardless of how well you did you'll probably think that you failed. So just be sure you don't flip out during the exam and end up screwing your grade b/c of it.
 

lane

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prepare to get owned. :)

i took it in december and it seemed to touch all the bases fairly equally, with a small preference towards molecular genetics and cellular metabolism. it was not fun for someone who was not a big fan of biochem from the beginning.

i took the gross board today, though, and it wasn't so bad - just know your abdominal circulation and it's all good.
 

thackl

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I did practice problems from PreTest and got 13pts above the national ave (more than 1.5 st deviations). The test is really freakin hard. Don't get anxious or frustrated, just keep working and be sure to finish.
 

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thackl said:
I did practice problems from PreTest and got 13pts above the national ave (more than 1.5 st deviations). The test is really freakin hard. Don't get anxious or frustrated, just keep working and be sure to finish.
What's PreTest?
 

thackl

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erin682 said:
What's PreTest?
It has 500 USMLE type questions with lenghty explainations. We basically get two days to study for each test (unless you are the motivated type that starts early during blocks) and you can get through this book easily in two days.
 

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PreTest questions are ridiculously hard. I found them to be much harder than the questions on the biochemistry shelf examination. That being said, they are great practice because when exam time comes, it'll seem easier.
 

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thackl said:
It has 500 USMLE type questions with lenghty explainations. We basically get two days to study for each test (unless you are the motivated type that starts early during blocks) and you can get through this book easily in two days.
Good to know. I'll look into that. Thanks.
 

thackl

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DrOctopus said:
PreTest questions are ridiculously hard. I found them to be much harder than the questions on the biochemistry shelf examination. That being said, they are great practice because when exam time comes, it'll seem easier.
I felt this way about pretest histo and anatomy, but not Biochem. I thought the NBME was much harder. I didn't even use Pretest for the other classes because they were too difficult.
 

lilmo

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thackl said:
I felt this way about pretest histo and anatomy, but not Biochem. I thought the NBME was much harder. I didn't even use Pretest for the other classes because they were too difficult.
2 of my professors wrote the pretest anatomy, cell bio. if you think pretest was hard, try having them in class :D
 

thackl

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lilmo said:
2 of my professors wrote the pretest anatomy, cell bio. if you think pretest was hard, try having them in class :D
No thanks :thumbdown: Pretest cell bio was rediculous. It had tons of path and phys and I hadn't taken either. I will probably take a look at it again next yr will preparing for the MLE.
 

saanjana

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Gr42 said:
My class will be taking the biochemistry shelf exam in less than a month so I was wondering if anyone had any input about the exam. Is it BRS better than NMS to study?? What are the most heavily and hard tested areas?? Has anyone taken it this year??

haha...i know this reply is coming in late...but its like a dream come true for me to give advice on biochem shelf (sad...but true :D )....anyhoo, i did quite well on the shelf, and highly recommend lippincott's. i used the pre-test as well and found it most helpful for the metabolism and integration of metabolism section. Genetics is decent. Ignore it for the molecular bio section in my opinion. Though the questions are super duper hard (i missed half of them), the explanations are quite well written, and the same topics are tested in different ways....so though the topics are hard as hell, they get drilled into your head....

Lippincott's is a big book (by my standards...hehe), so if you havne't used it so far, it might be overwhelming to read it cover to cover at this point. However, I would get the 3rd edition anyhow, and look at the diagrams, and do the few questions that they have int here....frankly speaking, if you know lippincott's inside and out, you'll kick butt on that shelf! the diagrams are classics, and might help clear up and integrate many of the topics.
 

thackl

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saanjana said:
haha...i know this reply is coming in late...but its like a dream come true for me to give advice on biochem shelf (sad...but true :D )....anyhoo, i did quite well on the shelf, and highly recommend lippincott's. i used the pre-test as well and found it most helpful for the metabolism and integration of metabolism section. Genetics is decent. Ignore it for the molecular bio section in my opinion. Though the questions are super duper hard (i missed half of them), the explanations are quite well written, and the same topics are tested in different ways....so though the topics are hard as hell, they get drilled into your head....

Lippincott's is a big book (by my standards...hehe), so if you havne't used it so far, it might be overwhelming to read it cover to cover at this point. However, I would get the 3rd edition anyhow, and look at the diagrams, and do the few questions that they have int here....frankly speaking, if you know lippincott's inside and out, you'll kick butt on that shelf! the diagrams are classics, and might help clear up and integrate many of the topics.
Several people used this as their class text and were real happy with it. I didn't use a book, but the required one was real crap from what I heard.
 

lilmo

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One day to study for the biochem shelf. Help! What's my best strategy (besides hoping for a miracle?) :luck:
 

GobindSingh

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I'll second what was said about the biochem shelf exam and Lippincott's. I used Lippincott's and did very well on the test. When I was taking the exam, it seemed as if Lippincott's was written for the exam. Other students used BRS and didn't feel as prepared. Also use Pretest.

Good luck.
 

felipe5

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uggggggh,,,, just got done waddling home (in pain mind you) after this puppy.......definitely have the feeling that I bombed it. I used First Aid primarily, and I thought it definitely helped, especially since I was pressed for time to study for it (we had 6 other exams to worry about to boot). But its quite an AMAZING feeling to not have to worry about biochem forever

and by forever, I mean until next year or so :cool:
 

thackl

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felipe5 said:
uggggggh,,,, just got done waddling home (in pain mind you) after this puppy.......definitely have the feeling that I bombed it. I used First Aid primarily, and I thought it definitely helped, especially since I was pressed for time to study for it (we had 6 other exams to worry about to boot). But its quite an AMAZING feeling to not have to worry about biochem forever

and by forever, I mean until next year or so :cool:
That's how I felt afterward..... thought I got half wrong. Ended up around the 93rd %ile nationally and two full standard deviations above my class's ave. You'll probably be amazed when it comes back. Good luck......
 

lilmo

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thackl said:
That's how I felt afterward..... thought I got half wrong. Ended up around the 93rd %ile nationally and two full standard deviations above my class's ave. You'll probably be amazed when it comes back. Good luck......

if missing half puts you at the 93rd..............that would put me at about 23rd :( :( gin + tonic + bday celebrations=very bad shelf scores. but on the bright side, no more stinkin' biochem!
 

felipe5

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zeloc said:
Is interpreting lab values important for this test?
I'd say not at all.......my experience with the biochem shelf was that they pretty much just straight up told you what was wrong (ex, hyperammonemia, hyperuricemia, etc) without giving you a list of lab values. Now, for the physiology shelf, expect to get quite a few questions involving analyzing lab values

edit: don't feel compelled to memorize normal values, as they are given to you on each inside cover