Dr. Cuts and everyone else, what are the best review books for the USMLEs?

Discussion in 'General International Discussion' started by dknykid1980, Jul 31, 2002.

  1. dknykid1980

    dknykid1980 Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Jul 13, 2001
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    I'm going down to SGU in August and I was wondering what review books you suggest that I take along with me. Many people have suggested that 'high-yield' series. do you? how about FIRST AID. I've been told that yes, we should concentrate on the class notes, etc. However, I feel like it would be a good idea to have these review books to look at.

    Thanks in advance people! Dr. Cuts you've always been helpful.

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  3. ApacheIndian

    ApacheIndian philomath
    10+ Year Member

    Apr 3, 2002
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    Hey Kid! I think it's great that you're willing to start early in your Step 1 prep... to ace the exam, you either have to do that or take a good 2-3 months off to study full time later (and I don't think that's an option for y'all at SGU). That said, I really can't comment on the High-Yield Series or most other books (I'm sure they all have their virtues), but I can tell you what I used to get my score (244/99)...

    1) Kaplan notes for everything - I took the 7 week course in Houston in the summer of 2000
    2) supplemented Path with Dr. Goljan's review book
    3) Buzzwords - IMHO, although they tell you that the NBME has eliminated buzzwords and test-wise strategies from Step 1, I found the exam to be loaded with buzzwords... i.e. easy points
    4) UCVs
    5) And of course, the Step 1 bible... First-Aid

    I also did app. 5000+ mcqs from Q-bank, WebPath, and MedRevu.

    To be honest, although I was happy with the sources I used, I'm sure all of the A-rated sources (as ranked in First-Aid) are good and one could score very well using any one of them. The problem I see happening often is "source overload," where a person (with good intentions) buys like 3 books for each subject... he gets so overwhelmed that his efforts become totally diluted, and his score suffers as a result.

    I say pick ONE review book for each of the 7 main subjects, learn in inside and out, and do tons of mcqs... the K.I.S.S. method if you will.

    Hope this helps! Good luck my friend!


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