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I've been using COMBANK for COMLEX II preparation. For those who have taken the exam already, how close is it to the real exam?

Thanks,

Andrew
 

doc24u

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hi pal. it is not even close. forthermore. currently there is a pending law suite against NBOME in fort lauderdale florida for alledgly subatoging the score of student and reporting it as failed test. NBOME is fighting very hard to keep the student away from seeing the test that they have subtoged as a favorite to the school that the student attended. however the judge denied NBOME request, god knows how maney students NBOME screwed so that way it will be in good terms with the school. checked it out
 

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I 2nd what livewires said. I found combank to be very helpful and I had several questions on my exam that were similar to questions I saw on combank. I just wouldn't rely on combank to be your only question bank. I did usmleworld 2ck first and was more than prepared. Start on combank a few days to a week before your exam to get the style down and you'll be good.
 

box29

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I also thought this was pretty close to the real deal. Albeit, it had only 550 questions when I used it in Dec. like the above poster said but the info and feedback they give is very helpful in tailoring your studies.
 
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I thought the format was very similar, and there were a few questions on my exam that I could have sworn I saw on Combank. That being said, I would definitely make use of another Q-bank, as well. I used the First Aid Q&A book for USMLE step 2. Overall, there were several areas that I felt overprepared for, and a few that I felt underprepared for.
 

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Hello,
I just signed up for combank today. Im not able to logon. I used the site to email them a message and I'm not sure if the email was sent at all. There is absolutely no contact information on the site, no email address or phone #. Does anyone know how to contact COMBANK inorder to get this sorted out.
Please help
 

FutureInternist

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Hello,
I just signed up for combank today. Im not able to logon. I used the site to email them a message and I'm not sure if the email was sent at all. There is absolutely no contact information on the site, no email address or phone #. Does anyone know how to contact COMBANK inorder to get this sorted out.
Please help

They have a "Contact Us' tab on the home page. Although the email address does not show up I have received numerous replies from the following - [email protected]

I found COMBANK to be pretty accurate. The types of Qs, the depth to which the topics are covered etc were representative. While there are grammatical & spelling errors, they are very good about feedback.
Some other posters have stated that the Q lengths on COMBANK were way shorter than the actual one but I don't know whether they just got unlucky or what since I took mine on Aug 11th & they still had a lot of 3-4 line Qs.
 
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FutureInternist

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hi pal. it is not even close. forthermore. currently there is a pending law suite against NBOME in fort lauderdale florida for alledgly subatoging the score of student and reporting it as failed test. NBOME is fighting very hard to keep the student away from seeing the test that they have subtoged as a favorite to the school that the student attended. however the judge denied NBOME request, god knows how maney students NBOME screwed so that way it will be in good terms with the school. checked it out

I don't know what the heck this guy is on?? Or maybe he thought the poster said COMSAE, instead of COMBANK. :). But, a refresher course in English should, clearly, be the top priority. (Heck yeah I started a sentence w/ "But")
 
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Osteopathology

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COMBANK was good, not great. Small amount of questions but nonetheless -- I enjoyed the format and the OMM review.

Its a good refresher to all the Osteopathic med students who havent seen OMM in a few months or so.
 

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I don't know what the heck this guy is on?? Or maybe he thought the poster said COMSAE, instead of COMBANK. :). But, a refresher course in English should, clearly, be the top priority. (Heck yeah I started a sentence w/ "But")


Speaking of COMSAE....... I thought it was the best tool to assess your knowledge pre-COMLEX. It's totally worth the $50 on the NBOME website and I highly suggest taking the 200 questions prior to Step 2. Plus it gives you an estimated score. From my experience, it was pretty accurate...i.e., COMSAE score: 620, COMLEX 2 score: 600.... 2 friends of mine took it also and scored similar to their COMSAE predicted score. Hope this helps! :)
 

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IMO...COMBANK was right on the money!

- I had at least 10 topics I would never have thought to study that appeared on my exam

-Format was very helpful, as question length was overall pretty close and matching/multi-question cases were similar to the real thing

-Emphasis on classic COMLEX topics was appropriate, ie in Cardio - plenty of HTN management, heart blocks, MI localization and initial management, etc

-Decent OMM review - I had a fairly high amt. on my exam...ie >15 sacral, >15 autonomic levels, >5 cranial q's, >10 ortho special tests, etc. The real thing did have some absolutely ridiculous stuff....ie OMM service called to ICU for pt w/ VDRF...what area/technique do you use....riiiight.....

-Ethics/Law topics on COMBANK were high-yield on my test....at least 5 q's I wouldn't have gotten w/o combank


Bottom Line: I would highly rec using this for the test.

All I used was COMBANK + FA Secrets and the only questions I was clueless about involved topics that I would never have covered if you gave me a year to study. I won't have scores back for a while, but I felt similar coming out of this one as I did on step 1, where I got >700.....and I studied wayyy less for this.
 

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COMBANK seems pretty good. One lame thing is when you are creating a test, if you create a 20 question test, it will give you something like 26. Not that big of a deal, but kind of ******ed. Spelling errors are still a-plenty, but again, not that big of a deal. Seems like it will be a good resource.

P.S. Why was SelfPromoter banned for calling out livewires? Pretty good detective work if you ask me. And livewires saying he called the COMBANK people and them assuring him the lawsuit had nothing to do with them...yeah right.
 

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Combank is decent, but WAY overpriced for the number of questions. The depth/length of the questions was much shorter than the real exam. I remember breezing through Combank in 2-3 days (the entire bank), but then was shocked by the paragraphed questions that I was given on the actual exam. Overall, if you were short on money, I would advise one to study hard for one week to ten days (Secrets, FA, OB/GYN Blueprints, FA Peds) and two to three days before your exam, complete the 200 question COMSAE on the NBOME website, as fast as you can. I took the COMSAE in a noisy Panera, since I remember my testing site for Part I being noisy. In short, the COMSAE predicted my score to be about 60 points lower than what I really scored. The COMSAE questions were EXACTLY like the actual exam in terms of length, depth, and style of questions.
 
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Taus

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IMO...COMBANK was right on the money!

- I had at least 10 topics I would never have thought to study that appeared on my exam

-Format was very helpful, as question length was overall pretty close and matching/multi-question cases were similar to the real thing

-Emphasis on classic COMLEX topics was appropriate, ie in Cardio - plenty of HTN management, heart blocks, MI localization and initial management, etc

-Decent OMM review - I had a fairly high amt. on my exam...ie >15 sacral, >15 autonomic levels, >5 cranial q's, >10 ortho special tests, etc. The real thing did have some absolutely ridiculous stuff....ie OMM service called to ICU for pt w/ VDRF...what area/technique do you use....riiiight.....

-Ethics/Law topics on COMBANK were high-yield on my test....at least 5 q's I wouldn't have gotten w/o combank


Bottom Line: I would highly rec using this for the test.

All I used was COMBANK + FA Secrets and the only questions I was clueless about involved topics that I would never have covered if you gave me a year to study. I won't have scores back for a while, but I felt similar coming out of this one as I did on step 1, where I got >700.....and I studied wayyy less for this.
Despite it's flaws, COMBANK, along w/ Secrets worked perfectly for me.

~80% correct on COMBANK, thoroughly studying q's I got wrong and knowing Secrets cold translated to 99 for me.
 
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Haole

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COMBANK seems pretty good. One lame thing is when you are creating a test, if you create a 20 question test, it will give you something like 26. Not that big of a deal, but kind of ******ed. Spelling errors are still a-plenty, but again, not that big of a deal. Seems like it will be a good resource.

P.S. Why was SelfPromoter banned for calling out livewires? Pretty good detective work if you ask me. And livewires saying he called the COMBANK people and them assuring him the lawsuit had nothing to do with them...yeah right.

COMBANK was pretty similar to the real test. It emphasizes many areas that showed up on test day. Would use it again. Scored well using only COMBANK going through twice. Took about 2 weeks.
 

DR BA BARACUS

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Thought combank was pretty good. Will probably use only that for step 3. Went through it once without studying and got 76% right, Then went over all wrongs. Ended up with 622 on actual test. The reality is that the majority of us could just take this exam w/out studying and do fine. Dont stress too much.
 

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The COMBANK was nothing like the real thing. The COMBANK had short question stems that represented the COMLEX from a few years ago when they indeed used to ask very short questions with buzzwords. The real COMBANK looks much more like USMLE World and I felt that USMLE World was not overkill in the least bit. In fact, I had a lot of questions from World that were on the test. The only questions that I saw from the COMBANK on the real exam were the medical ethics and epidemiology questions. The COMBANK questions were direct 1st order style of questions that required memorization and little thinking. For example a question would describe some type of glomerulopathy and offer choices that offered the many different types glomeruolopathies. There was a question like this for autoimmune diseases etc. It was as if the authors went through First Aid and just wrote questions addressing each major area. The real COMLEX had specific questions that were often 2nd order questions. The OMM was not represented well on the COMBANK. The COMBANK questions mostly consisted of simple viscerosomatic questions. While, it's true you will have many of these on the real exam, you will also have a lot more well written cranial, innominate and sacral questions.

I agree with NJWxMan's assessment and I share his experience. I felt the COMSAE is the closest thing to the real COMLEX with the exception that they chose the shorter stemmed questions for the COMSAE whereas the real COMLEX has longer paragraphs. If you do only the COMBANK, you will not be prepared for the real thing.

In terms of books and sources, I felt the First Aid for Step 2 and USMLE Secrets were the best sources. I'm not fond of the First Aid Step 2 book but for COMLEX, it was useful. It's epidemiology section was ideal. It's peds section was great as well. I thought the First OMM book was great and the Green Book's questions in the back were ideal.

In short, if I had to include a must-do strategy to pass:
1. USMLEWORLD
2. Viscerosomatic points, Cranial, Sacral, Ribs and Innominate sections in the Green book or the First Aid OMM
3. USMLE Secrets
4. COMSAE the week before your test

I think the COMBANK is a nice adjunct source if you are wanting to score as highly as you can but if you are pressed for time or just want to pass, I would not rely on the COMBANK.
 

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The COMBANK was nothing like the real thing. The COMBANK had short question stems that represented the COMLEX from a few years ago when they indeed used to ask very short questions with buzzwords. The real COMBANK looks much more like USMLE World and I felt that USMLE World was not overkill in the least bit. In fact, I had a lot of questions from World that were on the test. The only questions that I saw from the COMBANK on the real exam were the medical ethics and epidemiology questions. The COMBANK questions were direct 1st order style of questions that required memorization and little thinking. For example a question would describe some type of glomerulopathy and offer choices that offered the many different types glomeruolopathies. There was a question like this for autoimmune diseases etc. It was as if the authors went through First Aid and just wrote questions addressing each major area. The real COMLEX had specific questions that were often 2nd order questions. The OMM was not represented well on the COMBANK. The COMBANK questions mostly consisted of simple viscerosomatic questions. While, it's true you will have many of these on the real exam, you will also have a lot more well written cranial, innominate and sacral questions.

I agree with NJWxMan's assessment and I share his experience. I felt the COMSAE is the closest thing to the real COMLEX with the exception that they chose the shorter stemmed questions for the COMSAE whereas the real COMLEX has longer paragraphs. If you do only the COMBANK, you will not be prepared for the real thing.

In terms of books and sources, I felt the First Aid for Step 2 and USMLE Secrets were the best sources. I'm not fond of the First Aid Step 2 book but for COMLEX, it was useful. It's epidemiology section was ideal. It's peds section was great as well. I thought the First OMM book was great and the Green Book's questions in the back were ideal.

In short, if I had to include a must-do strategy to pass:
1. USMLEWORLD
2. Viscerosomatic points, Cranial, Sacral, Ribs and Innominate sections in the Green book or the First Aid OMM
3. USMLE Secrets
4. COMSAE the week before your test

I think the COMBANK is a nice adjunct source if you are wanting to score as highly as you can but if you are pressed for time or just want to pass, I would not rely on the COMBANK.

I scored just short of 800 w/ Secrets, Combank and Savarese ( and of course studying hard during core rotations).....so to each his/her own...
 

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I passed last year doing only COMBANK, step up USMLE 2, and Savarese...all in 2 weeks and did MUCH better than Step 1.
 

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I scored just short of 800 w/ Secrets, Combank and Savarese ( and of course studying hard during core rotations).....so to each his/her own...

That is true. Intelligence, previous knowledge and test taking abilities all count. If you scored just short of 800, I'm pretty certain you could have taken the test cold at the end of the third year and probably scored well into the 500's. For individuals like yourself, you probably just needed some simple review materials to refreshen what you already knew and thus the materials you had were sufficient. However, while those materials may have been sufficient for you that doesn't necessarily mean they are the most comprehensive. It's just that you didn't require material that was so comprehensive to succeed on the exam because you already knew a lot. Box is a radiology residents so I'm sure he is also not your average or above average test taker.

I consider myself to be an above average student(middle of the class) and thus for those of us reading this, I stand by my statement that combank is not enough and if you had to choose between combank and usmleworld, I would choose usmleworld. Furthermore, most of my classmates don't post on SDN and we all exchanged stories and all of them said the COMBANK was useful as an adjunct question bank and they did this after they did the USMLEWorld bank.

I can understand someone saying COMBANK helped them however I cannot understand or believe anyone who says the style and difficulty of the questions on the COMBANK represented the COMLEX. Heck, anyone can do a COMSAE right now and see that that COMBANK has little in common with that and the COMSAE was the most representative which is supported by the fact that it is published by the NBOME.
 
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Taus

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That is true. Intelligence, previous knowledge and test taking abilities all count. If you scored just short of 800, I'm pretty certain you could have taken the test cold at the end of the third year and probably scored well into the 500's. For individuals like yourself, you probably just needed some simple review materials to refreshen what you already knew and thus the materials you had were sufficient. However, while those materials may have been sufficient for you that doesn't necessarily mean they are the most comprehensive. It's just that you didn't require material that was so comprehensive to succeed on the exam because you already knew a lot. Box is a radiology residents so I'm sure he is also not your average or above average test taker.

I consider myself to be an above average student(middle of the class) and thus for those of us reading this, I stand by my statement that combank is not enough and if you had to choose between combank and usmleworld, I would choose usmleworld. Furthermore, most of my classmates don't post on SDN and we all exchanged stories and all of them said the COMBANK was useful as an adjunct question bank and they did this after they did the USMLEWorld bank.

I can understand someone saying COMBANK helped them however I cannot understand or believe anyone who says the style and difficulty of the questions on the COMBANK represented the COMLEX. Heck, anyone can do a COMSAE right now and see that that COMBANK has little in common with that and the COMSAE was the most representative which is supported by the fact that it is published by the NBOME.
Fair enough, I agree with you on that.
 
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UW is NO help for COMLEX. You learn a ton & you get good at time management but ultimately it is nothing like the COMLEX.
Do COMBANK for COMLEX, then if you have the time & money do UW to learn.

Thanks so much:). I have heard that UW was much better than Kaplan for StepII, but nothing really comparing UW to Combank. I'm lacking in the $ department, so I want to just do one or the other.
 

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In my opinion if u are the type who does not tend to have problems with board exams, and u busted it studying for shelf exams 3rd year, combank alone is enough to PASS. Will u get a 700? prob not, but u will do fine. How one should prepare is relative in my opinoion.
 

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UW is NO help for COMLEX. You learn a ton & you get good at time management but ultimately it is nothing like the COMLEX.
Do COMBANK for COMLEX, then if you have the time & money do UW to learn.

I should clarify in that I was only talking about Qbanks. I would still recommend using Savarese, Secrets & Boards&Wards for step 2.
 

inthe415

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I recently sat for the COMLEX Level 2-CE exam on 05/18/2010 and just receive a score of 80/473. I'm not the best test taker so I felt a great deal of relief and am going out to celebrate soon.

I studied for two weeks solid using all the COMBANK Q's, First Aid for the USMLE step 2, First Aid for Comlex and skimmed over Savarese - lots of visceral-somatic reflexes, muscle innervations, omt procedures... COMBANK was the biggest help. A few questions were verbatim and it seemed to cover just about everything I saw. I took the FP shelf a few weeks before which probably helped too, since I had gone through the Case Files book. I had started using USMLE-World for my shelf exams earlier in the year, but realized I wouldn't have time to do both Q banks.

I'm going into Family Practice; therefore, am not bothering with the USMLE. My goal was just to pass. When I did the combank Q's I got like 50%...so then I just kept at it till I was just above 63.7 % or whatever number it said that I needed to get in order to have a 90% chance of passing the COMLEX. I now have time to focus on more important things than standardized multiple Q tests.
 
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radiodoc99

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The COMBANK was nothing like the real thing. The COMBANK had short question stems that represented the COMLEX from a few years ago when they indeed used to ask very short questions with buzzwords. The real COMBANK looks much more like USMLE World and I felt that USMLE World was not overkill in the least bit. In fact, I had a lot of questions from World that were on the test. The only questions that I saw from the COMBANK on the real exam were the medical ethics and epidemiology questions. The COMBANK questions were direct 1st order style of questions that required memorization and little thinking. For example a question would describe some type of glomerulopathy and offer choices that offered the many different types glomeruolopathies. There was a question like this for autoimmune diseases etc. It was as if the authors went through First Aid and just wrote questions addressing each major area. The real COMLEX had specific questions that were often 2nd order questions. The OMM was not represented well on the COMBANK. The COMBANK questions mostly consisted of simple viscerosomatic questions. While, it's true you will have many of these on the real exam, you will also have a lot more well written cranial, innominate and sacral questions.

I agree with NJWxMan's assessment and I share his experience. I felt the COMSAE is the closest thing to the real COMLEX with the exception that they chose the shorter stemmed questions for the COMSAE whereas the real COMLEX has longer paragraphs. If you do only the COMBANK, you will not be prepared for the real thing.

In terms of books and sources, I felt the First Aid for Step 2 and USMLE Secrets were the best sources. I'm not fond of the First Aid Step 2 book but for COMLEX, it was useful. It's epidemiology section was ideal. It's peds section was great as well. I thought the First OMM book was great and the Green Book's questions in the back were ideal.

In short, if I had to include a must-do strategy to pass:
1. USMLEWORLD
2. Viscerosomatic points, Cranial, Sacral, Ribs and Innominate sections in the Green book or the First Aid OMM
3. USMLE Secrets
4. COMSAE the week before your test

I think the COMBANK is a nice adjunct source if you are wanting to score as highly as you can but if you are pressed for time or just want to pass, I would not rely on the COMBANK.



I agree with you. COMBANK was not like the real exam. It helped with core knowledge but the real exam is much harder. COMSAE was like the real exam in terms of format. For core knowledge use a source you "like" to read. The question banks are good for finding weak spots and reading more after doing them.
 

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I recently sat for the COMLEX Level 2-CE exam on 05/18/2010 and just receive a score of 80/473. I'm not the best test taker so I felt a great deal of relief and am going out to celebrate soon.

I studied for two weeks solid using all the COMBANK Q's, First Aid for the USMLE step 2, First Aid for Comlex and skimmed over Savarese - lots of visceral-somatic reflexes, muscle innervations, omt procedures... COMBANK was the biggest help. A few questions were verbatim and it seemed to cover just about everything I saw. I took the FP shelf a few weeks before which probably helped too, since I had gone through the Case Files book. I had started using USMLE-World for my shelf exams earlier in the year, but realized I wouldn't have time to do both Q banks.

I'm going into Family Practice; therefore, am not bothering with the USMLE. My goal was just to pass. When I did the combank Q's I got like 50%...so then I just kept at it till I was just above 63.7 % or whatever number it said that I needed to get in order to have a 90% chance of passing the COMLEX. I now have time to focus on more important things than standardized multiple Q tests.

Umm...Muscle innervations on COMLEX Step 2 CE? Seriously?
 

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I'm using both combank and comquest and I find them pretty similar. I remember for Step I Combank was very close to the real deal. There are 3 COMSAE exams. Is there one thats better than the others, or is there a difference in the difficulty level?
 
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