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Class of 2023 Step 1 Scores Possibly may be converted to P/F on Residency Application per USMLE town hall

g3tb0mbed

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Just saw this post on reddit. Personally am not class of 2023 but I feel like it makes sense for their scores to be converted just to have consistency for that application cycle. It sucks for those who have already put in a lot of studying for step 1 though. Thoughts?

Editing to add another post from reddit:
 
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RadOncMD

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Yeah honestly they should wait until 2024. My school isn’t pass/fail but I’ve always been told to prioritize my Step 1 over grades (therefore, no straight As here). It would be unfair to switch up the rules in the middle of the game.

Class of 2024 knew the new rules before they even applied to schools. That’s the only fair way imo.
 
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M&L

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They should wait until the class of 2024 applies because they would have at least known it would likely be P/F before they even started school. A number of us have already put so much into this.
Definitely... I mean I already spent this summer studying for step ... hahaha . Boy I am gonna be pissed .
That being said , I am still gonna be studying just in case .
 
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fldoctorgirl

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Seems like that's the current plan. This doesn't affect me, but if it did I would petition this and make noise. It doesn't make sense-- they should just start it with the class of 2024 since none of them have started studying for Step yet.
 
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slowthai

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Definitely... I mean I already spent this summer studying for step ... hahaha . Boy I am gonna be pissed .
That being said , I am still gonna be studying just in case .

Yeah, I usually would get upset by stuff like this, but it's out of our hands at this point. I'm really seeing that no matter how much of a control freak I am, so much of this life is out of my control (Coronavirus, P/F, and now retroactive erasure of scores).

And exactly, I'm still going to keep gunning because I want a very high step 2. And yeah, in the off-chance they change their minds about this, I'll be ready.
 
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M&L

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Yeah, I usually would get upset by stuff like this, but it's out of our hands at this point. I'm really seeing that no matter how much of a control freak I am, so much of this life is out of my control (Coronavirus, P/F, and now retroactive erasure of scores).

And exactly, I'm still going to keep gunning because I want a very high step 2. And yeah, in the off-chance they change their minds about this, I'll be ready.
Ok , so I think I WILL change my studying plan a bit - I will push pure biochem and such to winter and dedicated (because it has the least relevance to step 2, from what I understand ). Also - I am gonna look up step 2 structure today to keep it in mind . And the other stuff is necessary for clinicals and step 2 (all the systems , pharm, micro), so I might as well continue studying it . But “pure” science stuff I am putting on the back burner . What do you think ?
 
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Hippocratesintheflesh

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I wouldn't be surprised if "P/F for all" is a welcome change amongst med students outside of the niche demographic that is vocal on SDN; as someone who has been grinding a lot for this exam since day 1 of M1; I would just hope they give us an answer sooner rather than later--if P/F, so be it
 
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M&L

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I wouldn't be surprised if "P/F for all" is a welcome change amongst med students outside of the niche demographic that is vocal on SDN; as someone who has been grinding a lot for this exam since day 1 of M1; I would just hope they give us an answer sooner rather than later--if P/F, so be it
This will definitely put IMGs and maybe DO students at a difficult situation .
 
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slowthai

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Ok , so I think I WILL change my studying plan a bit - I will push pure biochem and such to winter and dedicated (because it has the least relevance to step 2, from what I understand ). Also - I am gonna look up step 2 structure today to keep it in mind . And the other stuff is necessary for clinicals and step 2 (all the systems , pharm, micro), so I might as well continue studying it . But “pure” science stuff I am putting on the back burner . What do you think ?

Yeah, I'm going to keep up with lolnotacop and Zanki pharm because micro and pharm are high yield for 3rd year and step 2. I will be looking more deeply into what a good step 2 workflow is later on. I've heard that it should be more UWorld and less Anki, so UWorld 2x and Anki only for weaknesses or something like that. That's one approach, though. I may just do basically what I've been doing but with Dorian and UWorld step 2. We'll see.

About biochem, I usually hear that people kind of have to go over it again and cram it towards the end of prep (even some Zanki users) because it's one of the few subjects that just doesn't seem to stick so well. I'm talking about the metabolism stuff, not the path stuff like lysosomal diseases.
 
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Hippocratesintheflesh

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This will definitely put IMGs and maybe DO students at a difficult situation .
Definitely tough on IMG/DO--mostly was referring to the broad swathe of MD students who don't have a particular interest in competitive specialties; at my school for example, even those who ARE interested in something competitive but haven't been cultured by SDN/reddit have vocally supported P/F (for better or for worse)
 
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M&L

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Yeah, I'm going to keep up with lolnotacop and Zanki pharm because micro and pharm are high yield for 3rd year and step 2. I will be looking more deeply into what a good step 2 workflow is later on. I've heard that it should be more UWorld and less Anki, so UWorld 2x and Anki only for weaknesses or something like that. That's one approach, though. I may just do basically what I've been doing but with Dorian and UWorld step 2. We'll see.

About biochem, I usually hear that people kind of have to go over it again and cram it towards the end of prep (even some Zanki users) because it's one of the few subjects that just doesn't stick seem to stick so well. I'm talking about the metabolism stuff, not the path stuff like lysosomal diseases.
yeah, definitely agree. I will look up step 2 today, and i think it will be a good idea to keep in mind what tests for step 2, while prepping for step 1...

I signed up for AMBOSS for all 4 years, and it includes all shelf exams and all steps, i highly recommend it.
 
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M&L

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Definitely tough on IMG/DO--mostly was referring to the broad swathe of MD students who don't have a particular interest in competitive specialties; at my school for example, even those who ARE interested in something competitive but haven't been cultured by SDN/reddit have vocally supported P/F (for better or for worse)
i personally would rather do scored test, because i do not have a lot of research and other things that stand out. So i was planning to use my step score (hopefully) as a way to stand out.... but now it means that i need to rethink my strategy. Ahhhh. Well, its ok, we will adapt. I am an MD student though. I cannot even imagine how stressed out IMGs and DOs probably are.....
 
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slowthai

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Someone made a great point in the second thread posted. Besides being unfair to the class of 2023 applying to ERAS in 2022, it affects the classes above us that are doing research years, masters programs, and PhDs. None of us knew this was a possibility before we made our decisions, including school choice and how we choose to spend our time.
 
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Matthew9Thirtyfive

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They should wait until the class of 2024 applies because they would have at least known it would likely be P/F before they even started school. A number of us have already put so much into this.

What happens to those of us who take it in 3rd year potentially after they make it pass fail? We’ll be taking it with c/o 2024 students mostly but applying to match with c/o 2023 students.
 
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slowthai

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What happens to those of us who take it in 3rd year potentially after they make it pass fail? We’ll be taking it with c/o 2024 students mostly but applying to match with c/o 2023 students.

I know what you're saying. They should honestly give you guys the option to make it scored because you're class of 23. All I can really say is they should do this and they should do that, but I'm not a money hungry NBME employee.
 
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M&L

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What happens to those of us who take it in 3rd year potentially after they make it pass fail? We’ll be taking it with c/o 2024 students mostly but applying to match with c/o 2023 students.
oh, wait, are you guys taking it 3rd year? when are you taking your step 2?
 
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M&L

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We take step 1 February of M3 and then we have to take step 2 by November.
ok, makes sense. Honestly, it is good. So for the fun of it i just logged into my step 2 practice questions on AMBOSS (i just finished up with reviewing GI, so i wanted to see how far off my knowledge is from step 2). it is pretty much the same questions but the clinical vignettes are bigger, and there are more lab results there vs for step 1 there mostly already just give you what you need to see to make the decision. But those few questions that i tried i actually got the same percentage correct as with step 1. So, really, from what i see now, if you just dive deeper into step 1 prep, you are sort of preparing for both exams. (maybe i am wrong, but this is what it looks like for now).
 
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Not that I expected them to, but USMLE website hasn't hinted at this yet. For what it's worth, the gunners have this going for them:

"Your score report is provided only for your personal use. When you want a third party (e.g., residency programs) to receive an official record of your USMLE scores, request that your registration entity send the transcript (see Requesting a Transcript of USMLE Scores). Under some circumstances, medical schools may receive scores and pass/fail outcomes for their students. " -USMLE FAQs
 
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M&L

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Not that I expected them to, but USMLE website hasn't hinted at this yet. For what it's worth, the gunners have this going for them:

"Your score report is provided only for your personal use. When you want a third party (e.g., residency programs) to receive an official record of your USMLE scores, request that your registration entity send the transcript (see Requesting a Transcript of USMLE Scores). Under some circumstances, medical schools may receive scores and pass/fail outcomes for their students. " -USMLE FAQs
Wait ... so am I reading this right ? Even if the step is converted to pass fail after I take it , I might be able to request the report to be sent to the residencies????
 
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Ho0v-man

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Even if it is retroactively reported, you’ll still get a score report. Save that score report because NBME only keeps it for a year. You could very well have your step scores requested for aways/auditions or even interviews.

Keep grinding!
 
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fldoctorgirl

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Even if it is retroactively reported, you’ll still get a score report. Save that score report because NBME only keeps it for a year. You could very well have your step scores requested for aways/auditions or even interviews.

Keep grinding!
Wait, so we have to save our own score report regardless?
 
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slowthai

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If scores are retroactively reported, can I bring my score to my interviews? I’ve never been “that guy,” but if I work my butt off for two years, I don’t want it to go to waste.

People are saying that they could make it a match violation. But I guess that depends on the NRMP. The NBME would have to ensure that the NRMP puts this policy into place. The question is, how enforceable is it? Programs violate match rules all the time with no repercussions.

@NotAProgDirector @gamerEMdoc

What do you guys think?
 
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g3tb0mbed

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While I am not an expert, I don’t see the NBME allowing for these “loopholes” to tell residencies your scores if they do decide to go P/F for class of 2023. It would go against the whole reason they are going P/F, not to mention Step 1 loses its standardization if some students continue studying hard for it and some take it easy in anticipation of P/F. Even if there was a way to sneak your score in, its much easier for PDs to just rank based on step 2 instead of giving any weight to a unreported step 1 score that half the graduating class may not have tried hard on
 
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While I am not an expert, I don’t see the NBME allowing for these “loopholes” to tell residencies your scores if they do decide to go P/F for class of 2023. It would go against the whole reason they are going P/F, not to mention Step 1 loses its standardization if some students continue studying hard for it and some take it easy in anticipation of P/F. Even if there was a way to sneak your score in, its much easier for PDs to just rank based on step 2 instead of giving any weight to a unreported step 1 score that half the graduating class may not have tried hard on
Yeah, I don't see how the NBME could allow you to send your score to individual programs. Just seems like a way to undermine the purpose of P/F Step for the most obvious of situations (surgical subspecialties, academic IM etc.).
 
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slowthai

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While I am not an expert, I don’t see the NBME allowing for these “loopholes” to tell residencies your scores if they do decide to go P/F for class of 2023. It would go against the whole reason they are going P/F, not to mention Step 1 loses its standardization if some students continue studying hard for it and some take it easy in anticipation of P/F.
Yeah, I don't see how the NBME could allow you to send your score to individual programs. Just seems like a way to undermine the purpose of P/F Step for the most obvious of situations (surgical subspecialties, academic IM etc.).

If what you guys are saying is true, they have a few options:

1. Make it P/F before the first people in the class of 2023 take step. So like, way earlier than Jan 2022, lol. They have said twice that they aren't going to do this.

2. Remove the option to download the score report before the first people in the class of 2023 take it. Most people take it in June/July, so you could bypass this by taking it in April/May.

3. Work with the NRMP to make sending your score report to programs a match violation. Again, I don't know how enforceable this is.

Even if there was a way to sneak your score in, its much easier for PDs to just rank based on step 2 instead of giving any weight to a unreported step 1 score that half the graduating class may not have tried hard on

Why would that stop PDs from using step 1 scores if they're available? That gives them more information to be able to decrease the size of the applicant pool, which is their primary aim pre-interview.
 
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@Goro @gyngyn have you heard about any of that by any chance ? (About 2023 cohort taking graded exams and then switching to pass fail when we apply to residencies.)
News to me.

Also keep in mind that reddit IS the cesspool of the internet.
 
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gamerEMdoc

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People are saying that they could make it a match violation. But I guess that depends on the NRMP. The NBME would have to ensure that the NRMP puts this policy into place. The question is, how enforceable is it? Programs violate match rules all the time with no repercussions.

@NotAProgDirector @gamerEMdoc

What do you guys think?

I’d imagine it would be some type of violation, otherwise what would stop programs from demanding you send a copy of your score? And as you said, doubtful on how effective enforcing it will be. Idk.
 
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Premed2295

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This absolutely should not be the case. 2023 was subject to the new admissions cycle rules. And under that more complicated unprecedented set of rules, made school choices that in many cases, counted on step 1 scores being part of their residency application. We got the back and forth on whether it would even be P/F by the time we took the exam since they said 2021 at the EARLIEST, and it was largely rumored a pandemic would delay that time frame. We were then subjected to a semester (or in some cases MORE) of Zoom University, the quality of which was widely variable across schools and individuals. If school grades were a poor metric of performance and the need for standardization was high before, it is astronomical now. Most of the activities students can do to set themselves apart instead of a good step 1 score are cancelled. More than half my class had to change their research project because clinical and non essential wet lab work has been cancelled. We have less access to community organizations, less access to academic resources, less access to clinical and non-clinical volunteering. If ever an equalizer like Step 1 was needed for a class its this one.
nbme should stopping messing around with remote exams, shorter exams (no wait we take that back), you get a score but actually it doesn't count etc and just figure out a way to give a valid test that tests what we truly need to know without the stressful back and forth.
 
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Why can't they just push the dates to summer of 2022 instead of January of 2022? This way we can ensure everyone who's graduating 2023 can have their scores and avoid any unfairness across the body of students. I mean, majority of students would have their scores before year 2022, and they really want to make changes that impact the majority of students for small number of students who will be taking it after 2022? Wouldn't it be easier for them to make changes that impact less number of students than more number of students? I just don't see any rationals about their actions.

Also, I don't understand how they are making changes for the class of 2023 in the middle of the games. At least for class 2024 and forward, they knew the STEP1 is going to be P/F before they even started. However for class of 2023, many students already digged too deep into step 1 and invested significant amount of time in preparation of this exam. The real difference here is the class of 2024 and beyond are able to make informed decision in choosing which schools to attend and how to shape their futures in making themselves more competitive, while the class of 2023 is about to face repercussion for the decision we did not make.

Anyway, i think the only way we can prevent this ever happening is via public pressures. We should all file petitions, send them emails, and re-tweet so the decision makers acknowledge the flaws in their sights. We can do this. We just gotta work as one cohort.
 
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M&L

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Why can't they just push the dates to summer of 2022 instead of January of 2022? This way we can ensure everyone who's graduating 2023 can have their scores and avoid any unfairness across the body of students. I mean, majority of students would have their scores before year 2022, and they really want to make changes that impact the majority of students for small number of students who will be taking it after 2022? Wouldn't it be easier for them to make changes that impact less number of students than more number of students? I just don't see any logic about their actions.

Anyway, i think the only way we can prevent this ever happening is via public pressures. We should all file petitions, send them emails, and re-tweet so the decision makers acknowledge the flaws in their sights. We can do this. We just gotta work as one cohort.
Yeah , I personally want graded test , but a lot of my classmates don’t. So it is hard to know what is right what is not , you know ? I know that my wishes are not more important than majority of my class :(
 
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If what you guys are saying is true, they have a few options:

1. Make it P/F before the first people in the class of 2023 take step. So like, way earlier than Jan 2022, lol. They have said twice that they aren't going to do this.

2. Remove the option to download the score report before the first people in the class of 2023 take it. Most people take it in June/July, so you could bypass this by taking it in April/May.

3. Work with the NRMP to make sending your score report to programs a match violation. Again, I don't know how enforceable this is.



Why would that stop PDs from using step 1 scores if they're available? That gives them more information to be able to decrease the size of the applicant pool, which is their primary aim pre-interview.
The first people to take Step 1 in the 2023 applicant pool have already taken it. MSTP students, IMGs, etc., plus some people from the class of 2022 who have already taken it but won't match or will end up taking a research year. So there's no move you could make at this point to intervene on everyone.

Those score reports can be altered really easily as ace_i said. I wouldn't expect them to be taken seriously either. Programs can't realistically ask for them outside of USMLE transcripts anyway because there's no rule that says you have to have saved your score report, so if you got a bad score you could just say you don't have it any more.
 
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longhaul3

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P/F shift was sadly unavoidable given the way NBME was handling the Step situations lately.
What do you mean ?
I agree, I was thinking the same thing. With the attempt at shortening the exam and administering it offsite beaten back, I think it would be a lot easier to sell if it's all just for a P anyway. I doubt they will try to make the original plan happen again, but going to p/f would make whatever the final fallout of covid is a lot easier to deal with.
 
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M&L

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I agree, I was thinking the same thing. With the attempt at shortening the exam and administering it offsite beaten back, I think it would be a lot easier to sell if it's all just for a P anyway. I doubt they will try to make the original plan happen again, but going to p/f would make whatever the final fallout of covid is a lot easier to deal with.
Wait , could you please explain to me real quick what’s that about ? I missed the whole thing apparently . (Short test and offsite thing )
 
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Ok , so I think I WILL change my studying plan a bit - I will push pure biochem and such to winter and dedicated (because it has the least relevance to step 2, from what I understand ). Also - I am gonna look up step 2 structure today to keep it in mind . And the other stuff is necessary for clinicals and step 2 (all the systems , pharm, micro), so I might as well continue studying it . But “pure” science stuff I am putting on the back burner . What do you think ?

Yea I'm in the same boat, was reviewing a lot of biochem this past month since that's not my forte, but now I think I might switch over to reviewing year 1 msk and neuro. This is definitely something I'm gonna keep following tho bc it really affects how I'm gonna spend my time next year during our M2 blocks o_O
 
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