Jul 6, 2017
4
1
Hey guys, US-IMG. Failed the CIS component, I don't know what happened and am devastated. My Step 1 is in the 230s and I'm awaiting my CK results. I have a CS date on November 1st, scoring report starts December 13th.

Should I still apply? I was always going for peds but I feel like I really shot myself in the foot. Some advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

nidusiamnot

2+ Year Member
Aug 21, 2014
36
6
Status
Medical Student
I was in a similar situation last year. While I did not end up applying, I sincerely urge you to apply. CIS is certainly not insurmountable and I think with good CK scores you might be able to get some interviews. But that is the optimistic view. The reason I ask you to apply: you only stand to lose money. You'll end up better equipped for dealing with interviews even if you don't match and you still have a chance to match if you apply. If you don't, you will be left to explain how you occupied yourself in between now and the next match and will for sure have to take and pass Step 3 to be considered a viable candidate.

Another piece of advice, apply broadly family, peds, psych, path. At this point beggars can't be choosers, so don't get too invested in the idea of matching a certain speciality. In the case you don't match, try to get involved in research, try auditioning at programs where you feel you have a chance and finally take Step 3 and pass it.

Not all of us are perfect and a CS attempt for IMGs is an anathema these days but it happened and it can't be changed. Don't dwell on it and try to pass CS as soon as possible. I wish you luck.
 

AdmiralChz

ASA Member
10+ Year Member
Sep 8, 2008
3,300
2,728
Mid-Atlantic
Status
Attending Physician
A fail on the CS portion on the exam isn't quite as much of an application-killing red flag as it was in the past since the pass rate was decreased a few years ago (it used to be 96+% pass (maybe 99% for US grads?), which was rightfully outcried as a total joke. Now it's much more common to see a second attempt on the exam. But use this as a learning opportunity and do NOT set yourself up for a 3rd attempt.
 
OP
D
Jul 6, 2017
4
1
I was in a similar situation last year. While I did not end up applying, I sincerely urge you to apply. CIS is certainly not insurmountable and I think with good CK scores you might be able to get some interviews. But that is the optimistic view. The reason I ask you to apply: you only stand to lose money. You'll end up better equipped for dealing with interviews even if you don't match and you still have a chance to match if you apply. If you don't, you will be left to explain how you occupied yourself in between now and the next match and will for sure have to take and pass Step 3 to be considered a viable candidate.

Another piece of advice, apply broadly family, peds, psych, path. At this point beggars can't be choosers, so don't get too invested in the idea of matching a certain speciality. In the case you don't match, try to get involved in research, try auditioning at programs where you feel you have a chance and finally take Step 3 and pass it.

Not all of us are perfect and a CS attempt for IMGs is an anathema these days but it happened and it can't be changed. Don't dwell on it and try to pass CS as soon as possible. I wish you luck.
Thanks for the support and advice. The issue with applying broad is all my LORs are peds related and my electives/work experiences are mostly peds as well. With ERAS opening up in a few weeks, I don't think it would be wise to apply broad in specialities that know for sure that they were a last ditch effort. If it doesn't work out this time around, I will def do research for a year and get Step 3 done too.
 
OP
D
Jul 6, 2017
4
1
A fail on the CS portion on the exam isn't quite as much of an application-killing red flag as it was in the past since the pass rate was decreased a few years ago (it used to be 96+% pass (maybe 99% for US grads?), which was rightfully outcried as a total joke. Now it's much more common to see a second attempt on the exam. But use this as a learning opportunity and do NOT set yourself up for a 3rd attempt.
Thanks dude. Still in my last year of school, graduating in December. Will make a list of things I should say and do, and practice for a month every day before my test. It was the nerves that killed me, hopefully I don't mess up this time around. I plan to individually call programs I applied to after I get my passing score back in December, that might bag me a few interviews.
 

mcl

10+ Year Member
Sep 6, 2008
807
583
Status
Academic Administration
Thanks dude. Still in my last year of school, graduating in December. Will make a list of things I should say and do, and practice for a month every day before my test. It was the nerves that killed me, hopefully I don't mess up this time around. I plan to individually call programs I applied to after I get my passing score back in December, that might bag me a few interviews.
This is a good strategy. Speaking for myself, by December I'm not checking the new documents as religiously as I do at the beginning of the recruitment season and I am starting to get some interview cancellations. Getting a call from an interested applicant at the right moment could definitely help get an expedited review/potential invitation.
 
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OP
D
Jul 6, 2017
4
1
This is a good strategy. Speaking for myself, by December I'm not checking the new documents as religiously as I do at the beginning of the recruitment season and I am starting to get some interview cancellations. Getting a call from an interested applicant at the right moment could definitely help get an expedited review/potential invitation.
It was the advice I got from someone who knew someone else who was in the same boat. He apparently ended getting 15 interviews total for that season, even as an IMG. That gave me a little hope. You gotta claw your way for those IVs. Looks like I gotta do the same and hopefully I can put this hiccup behind me. Honestly, the most difficult part for me will be conquering the self-doubt and nerves for the second time around for CS and I really hope that if I practice enough it won't be a problem.
 
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Reactions: leacott
Jul 11, 2018
7
1
Thanks dude. Still in my last year of school, graduating in December. Will make a list of things I should say and do, and practice for a month every day before my test. It was the nerves that killed me, hopefully I don't mess up this time around. I plan to individually call programs I applied to after I get my passing score back in December, that might bag me a few interviews.
How many interviews did you end up geting? I applied with a failed CS yesterday, I'm a US I'MG with really good scores and CS results will be available in October.
 
Sep 28, 2018
1
0
How many interviews did you end up geting? I applied with a failed CS yesterday, I'm a US I'MG with really good scores and CS results will be available in October.
I am in the same position as you! But I am going to apply next year. Could you keep me updated on how many interviews you get! It'll give me hope for next year!