anon1313

2+ Year Member
Sep 10, 2015
5
7
Status
Medical Student
Honest review of USMLEagle Prep LLC


I recently completed 5 weeks at USMLEagle studying for STEP 2 and would like to present a review since I couldn’t find any good reviews before deciding to come here. I will try my best to be as objective as possible to let you make your opinion about the program. In the past I have done Falcon in Dallas for Step 1 so I have experience with another review program.

Accommodation
  • The apartment I received was old, had 30+ hookah coal burns on the floor, leaky bathroom faucets, old and used bed sheets and comforter, and the couch and tables in the living room had burn holes in it.
  • Each bedroom comes with bedding, chair, table, and a lamp.
  • The apartment comes with adequate cooking utensils, pots, pans, bowls, etc. Had no problems.
  • There is a 100$ cleaning fee, but no professional cleaning services are used by the program; the tutors clean the rooms themselves so makes you wonder why it is so expensive.
  • Just so you know, other student’s apartments were better kept; I think I just got unlucky.

The Center
  • Nice, modern centre which is located within an office building. Mix of quiet areas and study areas with a lecture hall equipped with multiple projectors and touch screens. Tutors have offices where they conduct their sessions.
  • 3-4 restaurants are within walking distance
  • About a 5-10 minute walk from the apartment
  • Dinner is provided 4-5 days of the week at the center and varies in quality from make your own tacos to little casears pizza. Do not expect gourmet or the best tasting food. Other than dinner, you must provide for all your meals.

The Program
  • Within a 5 week session, I met with Dr. N, the academic direction, a total of 3 times totaling around 20 minutes in total time throughout the 5 weeks
  • I have never once seen her come out of her office and walk around the center to say hi and interact with the students.
  • On my second meeting, though a short meeting, the meeting was interrupted by a staff member 4 times. I can not say why for sure, but I suspect she organized it that way to rush the meetings with the students.
  • The tutors are the bread and butter of the program and are why people use USMLEagle. In my opinion, they are knowledgeable and can teach great test strategies. My improvement in my test taking abilities and consolidation of knowledge are because of the tutoring. Students have from 2-3 one hour sessions a week.
  • There are daily one-hour drills for Step 1, 2, and Pharm. The drills are good to solidify connections and test for your weaknesses.
  • They only pay for your first computer NBME exam and you must pay for all subsequent exams so be prepared to spend an extra 100-120$ in a 5 week program. I was not aware of this when I signed up for the program and was upset when I found out as were other students.
  • The lectures are hit or miss based off the teacher and your learning style. In my opinion, I liked half the lectures and thought they were useful. For step 2 students, it is time-consuming to goto all the lectures since many of the lectures are geared for step 1 students and have a lot of unnecessary information, however I learned a lot from the step 2 only lectures.
  • The staff, the tutors, and the other students are nice, helpful to your needs, and easy to get along with.

Overall

  • I thought this was a great program because of the relatively smaller size compared to larger programs like PASS and the personalized attention you get from the tutors during sessions. I can definitely say it has greatly improved my test taking abilities and will contribute to my success on this exam.
  • However, I felt all the power for scheduling and making decisions was in the hands of Dr. N, the academic director, and since she spent so little time with the students, it was hard for me to trust her advice in any decision. To make matters worse, when I first arrived at the program, she readily recommended me to see a psychiatrist to get medication and she does this for many students. When I mean meds: adderall, benzos, b-blockers, she will not say these names directly but she most definitely hints at them.
  • To sum it all up, I felt the program is good because of the excellent tutoring and keeping you on track, however I felt there was a lot of unprofessional behavior from the director and it truly felt like she did not care about the students and just wanted our money.

This is just my take, other’s views may differ. Let me know if you have any questions. I wish I knew more about this program before I joined.
 
Sep 25, 2015
2
0
Status
MD/PhD Student
Thank you for your review. I would like to take this course. I have a few questions, please, is housing for single person apartment or do you share with others? Also, if the course is combined with step 1 lectures, did you attend those? I noticed the calendar showing step 1 is also included, what did you do regarding those lectures?
 
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anon1313

2+ Year Member
Sep 10, 2015
5
7
Status
Medical Student
You're welcome. Sure.

The housing is shared with others; they are 3 bedroom apartments (2 regular and 1 master). I would highly recommend requesting a master bedroom as you will have your own bathroom and a larger space. I did not know I could request this at the time but hopefully this will help you out.

Step 2 students attend the step 1 and step 2 lectures so it is quite time intensive (majority step 1). I attended almost all the step 1 lectures; I could not attend a few since they overlapped with a few step 2 lectures. To be honest, I thought it was a waste of time as very little of the information in these lectures were geared towards step 2. For the most part, the tutors who taught the lectures were knowledgeable but the lectures Dr. N, the director, taught were an utter waste of time. As a piece of advice, do not pick this program for the lectures or the notes (which are outdated), pick it if you need individualized tutoring for test taking deficiencies or a babysitter to keep you on track.

Advice: Ask for discounts, many students get 20-30% off based off what school they goto. They don't want to advertise the discounts so they can keep more money! Unfair to the students like me who had to pay more :/

Hope that helps!
 
Sep 25, 2015
2
0
Status
MD/PhD Student
thank you so much man for the advice. I will stay clear of this program. I wish you good luck with your preparation for these exams.
 
Jun 22, 2014
2
0
Status
Resident [Any Field]
Hi, everyone. I'd like to give you all my experience with this program. I was a student for Step 2 CK and Step 3 and a Tutor as well. My review of the program will be non-bias in nature and to give you a perspective from someone who worked at the program.

First note, the owner and the tutors, we were all a team and helped each other out. There wasn't, "You are doing more work than me" type of attitude because everyone was benefiting in their own way.

Accommodations: I have cleaned all the apartments and I would say that 1 or 2 of the apartments have a few carpet stains that will be changed once the lease is renewed. When I was a student, I remember there were 2 types of people at Eagle, one of them worked their butt off and studied and the other spent time partying in Orlando. The ones that studied were usually at Eagle for 1-2 months, took their exam and went back to their life. The ones that partied are the ones that would drink in their apartments and do anything and everything besides studying hence some apartments were unkept than others and those students would be at Eagle > 2 months. I remember cleaning some apartments and the students would leave a huge mess and trails of empty beer bottles all over the apartment. However, we sanitized the bathrooms, kitchen, scrub the stains off the floors and vacuumed the entire place so when the next student came to the program they could rest assured that they were sleeping on clean washed bed sheets and a sanitized clean apartment. Last note here, when I was at Eagle, I spent morning's and night's at the program center (which is brand new and very accommodating). I only went home to sleep, I never went home to hang out, etc.. You have all the resources provided for you at the Center and then you also have distractions from living in Orlando, it's how you use the resources and your time, no one will hold your hand and tell you what you shouldn't do as far as time is concerned.

Program and Center: Again, the center is very modern and accommodating. There are plenty of rooms to study quietly or if you like to study in a group, there are rooms for that also. They have white boards in almost every room so you can visualize key concepts (I used them often). The program also has places to eat walking distance and you can also get food delivered with no problem. I agree with the above post that the Tutors are very important to the program because they help stabilize and imprint important key concepts. The program has "Drilling" in the morning that consists of rapid recall of high yield concepts from subjects like Pharmacology, Microbiology and Step 1, Step 2 and Step 3 depending on the course you are taking. Then you get time after that to do Qbank questions (you are given a schedule that tells you how many Qs to do a day including which question bank). After that, you will have a lecture on a certain organ system for that day. During the lecture break, the owner of the program provides free food for everyone and once lecture resumes and is completed, you have time to catch up or finish your question bank.

The owner of the program does see each student personally in her office to go over their NBME results and gives them an estimate on their exam date. Some students feel as though she doesn't spend enough time with them but they don't realize what's going on behind the scenes. Firstly, the owner of the program is following each students Qbank and knows who is completing their questions and who isn't. Secondly, she also knows who is studying and who is not doing what they are supposed to do. Lastly, she already knows how far along each student has come and if they are ready to take their exam. She actually knows all of this before meeting you personally. She knows all this because all the tutors get together and have weekly meetings with Dr. N and we go through each student individually.

I can tell you from my own personal experience there that before I was a tutor, I was treated just like every other student. I would go and see her in the office after I took a NBME, she told me how well I'm doing and if I'm progressing in the right direction and if I keep up with this progress when my projected exam date should be. It was a 10 minutes meeting with her which was more than sufficient time. She was able to tell me when I was ready to take the exam and each time she told me, I passed. I remember she told a few students not to take their exam and to move it back but they didn't listen because they thought they were ready and when they took the exam, they failed and they came right back to the program.

Last thought, we are all adults and trying to be a Medical Professional. When you come to the program, know what you need to do so you can take your exam and leave. It's not a vacation so don't treat it like one (which I've seen many students do). I've also seen students complain and actually cry because they weren't getting to where they needed to be but they were spending more time hanging out with other students and less time studying. This program can only make you successful, it has all the resources you need to get a 230+, it's just how you use it.

I am grateful for this program because it helped me pass first attempt on my CK and Step 3. Without this program I would have not gotten into a residency because I needed the tools to help me get to the finish line and I was able to do it at Eagle. If you have more questions about my experience there, don't hesitate to ask.

Keep studying hard and don't lose sight of your goal. You will make it! Trust me.
 

J ROD

Watch my TAN walk!!
Lifetime Donor
10+ Year Member
Aug 1, 2005
58,243
1,987
working on my tan......
Status
Resident [Any Field]
Hi, everyone. I'd like to give you all my experience with this program. I was a student for Step 2 CK and Step 3 and a Tutor as well. My review of the program will be non-bias in nature and to give you a perspective from someone who worked at the program.

First note, the owner and the tutors, we were all a team and helped each other out. There wasn't, "You are doing more work than me" type of attitude because everyone was benefiting in their own way.

Accommodations: I have cleaned all the apartments and I would say that 1 or 2 of the apartments have a few carpet stains that will be changed once the lease is renewed. When I was a student, I remember there were 2 types of people at Eagle, one of them worked their butt off and studied and the other spent time partying in Orlando. The ones that studied were usually at Eagle for 1-2 months, took their exam and went back to their life. The ones that partied are the ones that would drink in their apartments and do anything and everything besides studying hence some apartments were unkept than others and those students would be at Eagle > 2 months. I remember cleaning some apartments and the students would leave a huge mess and trails of empty beer bottles all over the apartment. However, we sanitized the bathrooms, kitchen, scrub the stains off the floors and vacuumed the entire place so when the next student came to the program they could rest assured that they were sleeping on clean washed bed sheets and a sanitized clean apartment. Last note here, when I was at Eagle, I spent morning's and night's at the program center (which is brand new and very accommodating). I only went home to sleep, I never went home to hang out, etc.. You have all the resources provided for you at the Center and then you also have distractions from living in Orlando, it's how you use the resources and your time, no one will hold your hand and tell you what you shouldn't do as far as time is concerned.

Program and Center: Again, the center is very modern and accommodating. There are plenty of rooms to study quietly or if you like to study in a group, there are rooms for that also. They have white boards in almost every room so you can visualize key concepts (I used them often). The program also has places to eat walking distance and you can also get food delivered with no problem. I agree with the above post that the Tutors are very important to the program because they help stabilize and imprint important key concepts. The program has "Drilling" in the morning that consists of rapid recall of high yield concepts from subjects like Pharmacology, Microbiology and Step 1, Step 2 and Step 3 depending on the course you are taking. Then you get time after that to do Qbank questions (you are given a schedule that tells you how many Qs to do a day including which question bank). After that, you will have a lecture on a certain organ system for that day. During the lecture break, the owner of the program provides free food for everyone and once lecture resumes and is completed, you have time to catch up or finish your question bank.

The owner of the program does see each student personally in her office to go over their NBME results and gives them an estimate on their exam date. Some students feel as though she doesn't spend enough time with them but they don't realize what's going on behind the scenes. Firstly, the owner of the program is following each students Qbank and knows who is completing their questions and who isn't. Secondly, she also knows who is studying and who is not doing what they are supposed to do. Lastly, she already knows how far along each student has come and if they are ready to take their exam. She actually knows all of this before meeting you personally. She knows all this because all the tutors get together and have weekly meetings with Dr. N and we go through each student individually.

I can tell you from my own personal experience there that before I was a tutor, I was treated just like every other student. I would go and see her in the office after I took a NBME, she told me how well I'm doing and if I'm progressing in the right direction and if I keep up with this progress when my projected exam date should be. It was a 10 minutes meeting with her which was more than sufficient time. She was able to tell me when I was ready to take the exam and each time she told me, I passed. I remember she told a few students not to take their exam and to move it back but they didn't listen because they thought they were ready and when they took the exam, they failed and they came right back to the program.

Last thought, we are all adults and trying to be a Medical Professional. When you come to the program, know what you need to do so you can take your exam and leave. It's not a vacation so don't treat it like one (which I've seen many students do). I've also seen students complain and actually cry because they weren't getting to where they needed to be but they were spending more time hanging out with other students and less time studying. This program can only make you successful, it has all the resources you need to get a 230+, it's just how you use it.

I am grateful for this program because it helped me pass first attempt on my CK and Step 3. Without this program I would have not gotten into a residency because I needed the tools to help me get to the finish line and I was able to do it at Eagle. If you have more questions about my experience there, don't hesitate to ask.

Keep studying hard and don't lose sight of your goal. You will make it! Trust me.
;) :rolleyes:
 
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Jan 28, 2016
3
1
Status
Medical Student
The program may have been good in the past but it no longer is. This is my opinion and my "Truth".

1. Accommodations: Good enough

2. The Center: Depends on what type of group is starting with you. If they are the studious type then staying at the center would be beneficial. If not, then it becomes more of social scene than a productive environment. Also note that this program is offered as a remedial course for some schools such a AUA. So many kids may not be very "Studious".

3. The Program:
-Depends on the tutor you get (you will REALLY benefit from 1-2 of them). Some tutors are really bad...you can't choose which ones you tutor with! SOME tutor(s) gossip with you or about you...about/with other students!
-Drills: Helpful, depends on who is drilling again. One of the main "Drillers" had/has a major power trip. He makes you do all types of crazy things if you get the answers wrong! Hazing to the fullest!
- You will not benefit from Dr. N...Her lectures are very long and it is hard to stay focused.
-After each NBME you have a meeting with her, but what I noticed is that you usually wait for hours to see her...and then she gives you a very general/monotone reason on why your scores are improving or not improving. If they are improving she will take FULL credit for this improvement!
-CAN'T REVIEW NBMES?!?! The golden rule of success is learning from your mistakes...too bad you aren't allowed to look at the questions you got wrong on your NBMES....and you take some NBMEs more than once (you have to pay for them)!

OVERALL: I DO NOT agree with zreham80 (his wife and him were both tutors/or went to the program)... the program is not based on who is more dedicated or who is there to "party/hang out". If people were self-dedicated they wouldn't be at the program to begin with! In my opinion the program is based on the tutors since Dr. N is always missing (#doYOUlol)....if you have tutors that are knowledgeable and guide you....you build motivation and guidance (something many people at usmleagle need, since most of them are there to pass their AUA comp exam after failed attempts).

Some things you should consider before joining the program:
1. Do you need a full review? Or one on one attention?
If you need one on one attention it would be cheaper to just hire a private tutor than joining a program who makes you go over all the material regardless of your weakness/strengths.
2. If you are there or need to be there for AUA comp exam....ask them how many people actually passed. I do not know of any when I was at the program!

Message me if you any of you all have any questions!

This was only based on my step 1 experience
 
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anon1313

2+ Year Member
Sep 10, 2015
5
7
Status
Medical Student
Thank you pBrownJChiTown for your review. I am glad another student like yourself posted a review rather than a tutor on the payroll, zrehman80.
 
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Jan 28, 2016
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" To make matters worse, when I first arrived at the program, she readily recommended me to see a psychiatrist to get medication and she does this for many students. When I mean meds: adderall, benzos, b-blockers, she will not say these names directly but she most definitely hints at them." - Anon1313

YUP. For people who are currently in the program or end up joining the program just remember that it is completely normal to be nervous while your preparing for one of the biggest exams in your medical career....it doesn't mean you should go see a psychiatrist. The more prepared you feel for the exam the less anxious you will feel. So don't allow anyone at the program to tell you otherwise. If you really feel that you may have concentration problems or anxiety issues that need to be resolved by seeing a psychiatrist then definitely go see who see recommends. If not, don't fall into the peer pressure.
 
Dec 5, 2012
865
699
Status
Medical Student
Hi, everyone. I'd like to give you all my experience with this program. I was a student for Step 2 CK and Step 3 and a Tutor as well. My review of the program will be non-bias in nature and to give you a perspective from someone who worked at the program.

First note, the owner and the tutors, we were all a team and helped each other out. There wasn't, "You are doing more work than me" type of attitude because everyone was benefiting in their own way.

Accommodations: I have cleaned all the apartments and I would say that 1 or 2 of the apartments have a few carpet stains that will be changed once the lease is renewed. When I was a student, I remember there were 2 types of people at Eagle, one of them worked their butt off and studied and the other spent time partying in Orlando. The ones that studied were usually at Eagle for 1-2 months, took their exam and went back to their life. The ones that partied are the ones that would drink in their apartments and do anything and everything besides studying hence some apartments were unkept than others and those students would be at Eagle > 2 months. I remember cleaning some apartments and the students would leave a huge mess and trails of empty beer bottles all over the apartment. However, we sanitized the bathrooms, kitchen, scrub the stains off the floors and vacuumed the entire place so when the next student came to the program they could rest assured that they were sleeping on clean washed bed sheets and a sanitized clean apartment. Last note here, when I was at Eagle, I spent morning's and night's at the program center (which is brand new and very accommodating). I only went home to sleep, I never went home to hang out, etc.. You have all the resources provided for you at the Center and then you also have distractions from living in Orlando, it's how you use the resources and your time, no one will hold your hand and tell you what you shouldn't do as far as time is concerned.

Program and Center: Again, the center is very modern and accommodating. There are plenty of rooms to study quietly or if you like to study in a group, there are rooms for that also. They have white boards in almost every room so you can visualize key concepts (I used them often). The program also has places to eat walking distance and you can also get food delivered with no problem. I agree with the above post that the Tutors are very important to the program because they help stabilize and imprint important key concepts. The program has "Drilling" in the morning that consists of rapid recall of high yield concepts from subjects like Pharmacology, Microbiology and Step 1, Step 2 and Step 3 depending on the course you are taking. Then you get time after that to do Qbank questions (you are given a schedule that tells you how many Qs to do a day including which question bank). After that, you will have a lecture on a certain organ system for that day. During the lecture break, the owner of the program provides free food for everyone and once lecture resumes and is completed, you have time to catch up or finish your question bank.

The owner of the program does see each student personally in her office to go over their NBME results and gives them an estimate on their exam date. Some students feel as though she doesn't spend enough time with them but they don't realize what's going on behind the scenes. Firstly, the owner of the program is following each students Qbank and knows who is completing their questions and who isn't. Secondly, she also knows who is studying and who is not doing what they are supposed to do. Lastly, she already knows how far along each student has come and if they are ready to take their exam. She actually knows all of this before meeting you personally. She knows all this because all the tutors get together and have weekly meetings with Dr. N and we go through each student individually.

I can tell you from my own personal experience there that before I was a tutor, I was treated just like every other student. I would go and see her in the office after I took a NBME, she told me how well I'm doing and if I'm progressing in the right direction and if I keep up with this progress when my projected exam date should be. It was a 10 minutes meeting with her which was more than sufficient time. She was able to tell me when I was ready to take the exam and each time she told me, I passed. I remember she told a few students not to take their exam and to move it back but they didn't listen because they thought they were ready and when they took the exam, they failed and they came right back to the program.

Last thought, we are all adults and trying to be a Medical Professional. When you come to the program, know what you need to do so you can take your exam and leave. It's not a vacation so don't treat it like one (which I've seen many students do). I've also seen students complain and actually cry because they weren't getting to where they needed to be but they were spending more time hanging out with other students and less time studying. This program can only make you successful, it has all the resources you need to get a 230+, it's just how you use it.

I am grateful for this program because it helped me pass first attempt on my CK and Step 3. Without this program I would have not gotten into a residency because I needed the tools to help me get to the finish line and I was able to do it at Eagle. If you have more questions about my experience there, don't hesitate to ask.

Keep studying hard and don't lose sight of your goal. You will make it! Trust me.
"Non-bias" LoLz
 
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Mar 9, 2016
2
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Medical Student
My review of Eagle,

I was at this program and I feel as if it was a waste of my time as well. (I followed the "method" did their sequence of qs, attended all drills and lectures), the information they teach you is outdated. Their notes are outdated and basically copied and pasted from usmle world, kaplan, PASS and other sources. A good amount of information is just wrong. This cost me 5K.

The drills were a joke depending on who did them, some tutors think its cool to swear, use foul language and call students out for their imperfections. Other drill instructors are not very knowledgeable. I improved a bit, but it was not because of them, its because I had a good place to study for 5 weeks. They have something they call Pebbles which is a useless packet of quick info - its also wrong info, and it contradicts their notes .This cost me 5K.

I only had their best tutors twice (who were more interested in asking questions about my personal life, instead of teaching me medicine), once I had tutoring on skype!! WHY WOULD I WANT SKYPE TUTORING when I am at the program. I only met the program director twice, she cancelled on me the other times. Most likely b/c I wasn't one of the students the secretaries liked (get in with them well, esp the main one, who is also a student otherwise she will continually slander you to the tutors and students). The program directors' (dr.N) opinion was for me to go on adderall and see a Psychiatrist so she/he can evaluate me. One student told me the program gets a "kickback" to send me there PSSHH, I am not sure what specialty dr. N practices maybe - NOTHING. I spent over 5K at the program which was a waste of my time.

The head tutor is more interested in checking out the girls, and get to know them, and their lectures' are hard to understand because they drop more F-bombs than any relevant information. The tutors say they want you to do well but at the same time they will talk **** behind your back, the head tutor lied to me repeatedly about how to get extra tutoring and how the other tutors are a waste of my time. Like this guy is some savior.......This cost me 5K.

Going over the same thing 5 times in lecture is not helpful. Giving me answers to NBME questions and qs in UW is not teaching. I was also given a tutor that wanted to talk more about her problems then about my progress, she also just read from the slides. This cost me 5K.

They say they provide food, which they do - true but they cook it themselves in crock pots (how cheap are they)..thats Eagle for you and it shares a place with a Law firm which is really awkward. This cost me 5K.


The only good things were the students! Take your money elsewhere.
 
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anon1313

2+ Year Member
Sep 10, 2015
5
7
Status
Medical Student
@rerickson Are you serious? I posted my review because it is an honest representation of what I experienced through 5 weeks at the program; the good and the bad. You are clearly working with this company and have their best interest at heart; not the students who are reading this forum and trying to make informed decisions before they spend 5k.
 
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anon1313

2+ Year Member
Sep 10, 2015
5
7
Status
Medical Student
@LK8472

I have to ask. If you are posting a real review of USMLEagle, why did you post it on my thread and not start a new one? Why are you also rebutting all the negative statements?? No one expected this place to be "The Ritz" so not sure why you are making outlandish comparisons; it makes you seem even more defensive. I am sick and tired of students not getting accurate information about the medical programs they spend thousands of dollars to be at. If these programs would like to change their image, then they should by changing their professional behavior and how they conduct the program. If anything, these reviews are constructive criticism to change the program for the better; not ask students to post positive reviews on their behalf or fabricate reviews.

Hey all, I recently completed the USMLEagle course and my opinion is that I am glad I did it and furthermore I'm glad I didn't google it on forums prior attending. For anyone who has, I am surprised by some of the negatives and agree with others. I'll want to put my experience vs expectations out there for anyone looking. I'm cooling down from just taking STEP 2 CK and I was curious what others were saying and I am seeing 2 types of responses on here and they are very polarizing. Offense, defense, point, counterpoint, etc. I think this program is maybe not for everyone, however it was for me and if you read through my story and you can relate a little bit, then it may be wise to consider this program for yourself. I'll put a DL;DR at the end for those that want to skip to the bottom.

I'm an American IMG. I enjoyed learning through the basic sciences and as I left the island I was ranked in the top 50% of my class. At my school we have to pass COMP exams prior to taking STEP 1 and STEP 2 CK. I took a Becker In-Person course in Dallas for STEP 1 prep after passing my COMP because I wanted to score well (like everyone does) and I struggled with a few basic things. The lecture days were so grueling and long that I didn't have any time for myself to hit my weak areas or do any meaningful quantity of practice questions. I sat for STEP 1, passed, and wasn't happy. I got over it.
Then I went on to clinicals. I loved every minute of it. Finally out of the books and with patients. I took the Shelf exams without a problem and kept on going. Next I tried to take the COMP for STEP 2. I studied on my own. I knew that sitting through full day lectures of a prep course was not my cup of tea because I didn't know that there were other options. I took a month off and got through Secrets, First Aid, and did the whole UWorld bank. I missed the set pass score by 2 points. I took it again a 3 weeks later after revising and missed it by 4 points. It was demoralizing. I needed a break and got back into rotations. I kept re-reading the books and working questions when I could. 3rd attempt, missed it by 2 points again. No matter what I did I couldn't get a high enough mark on the exam and I would have failed miserably had I taken STEP 2 right then and there. I was turned on to USMLEagle by a mentor and was skeptical. I didn't want to do a course but I knew I needed help and the strategy of drills, tutoring, lecture, practice examinations, and SMALL CLASS SIZE (not more than 10 CK students while I was there and less for STEP 1) was very different from any prep course I had heard about. I called them up, talked about where I was coming from, and put down my deposit. Initially I signed up for 3 weeks, with my COMP scheduled on the last day of the program. I figured I'd learn what I could and stay in the area studying on my own for another few weeks and then take STEP 2. I ended up extending for 2 weeks instead to keep the tutoring, access to lectures, drills, and testing practice facilities. It was a good choice for me. Total 5 Weeks. Passes COMP by a wide margin and awaiting STEP 2 CK results now.

I'll do some bullet points here for my personal experience about Accommodations, the Center, and the Program:

---I made no requests for accommodations. I didn't know you could. I got a Master in a 3/2 apartment. The apartment complex abuts the building the Center is located in. My place was clean and quiet. Yeah there was a stain on the floor by where the garbage can is but who cares? I was nervous about having roommates, but it was a not a problem. It's not The Ritz, and frankly you really only sleep there if you do the program right.

---The Center is the hub where it all happens. Nice office building with great hours. Last one out locks up. Doors open around 8am. I will say my shocker moment was that although the facility is open to use on the weekends, the AC is not. There are fans and that helps a lot. I was wearing shoes, pants, and a shirt +/- jacket on the weekdays but weekends are shirt/shorts/flip-flops or bust. There's a classroom where lectures happen. Two testing rooms are set up to resemble Prometric centers so you can practice how you'll play (not that anyone doesn't know what that feels like by now but it's different than being on your laptop in other settings.) A break room where dinner is served and you can store some of your own stuff for lunch or coffee in cabinets. Again, not The Ritz for dinner but it's nice to have to make 1 less meal every day or not take time to leave and get something, to me that was the value. They have vegetarian options always. There's a large conference table in a middle room along with some cubicles where tutoring happens, and a handful of other study spaces.

---The Program, where to start...
1) You're free to do what you want. You made a decision to be there and they are there to help you. You can follow the schedule and do what is recommended for you or you can not, which, in my opinion would be a complete waste of your time and treasure. I want to put it another way that should hit home for everyone reading this: If you tell a patient they should to take Drug X for their complaint, it is well studied, has proven efficacy, and is a good choice considering all co-morbidities, and the patient is non-compliant, does the medication work? SPOILER ALERT: Yeah it does, but the patient didn't take it!
2) Dr. N, the program director, sat me down after taking the initial litmus test on Day 1 and we hammered out a plan that would be optimized for me. She has a rare talent for seeing patterns in test taking, mental errors, knowledge gaps, and where these things all overlap. No one ever did this with me before and I was absolutely stunned as she described nearly exactly what I was going through at certain points during the test. We revised the plan and schedule throughout my time there. This is a tailored program. I met at least once a week with Dr. N to discuss progress and review exam results.
3) Yes she did recommend that I see a psychiatrist to address issues that were unique and appropriate for me, and guess what, I did it and IT WORKED.
4) Yes, additional exams are out of pocket. You will need a U-World subscription too. Now you know. Plan ahead.
5) The Notes: All the content is there. Yes there are some outdated slides because the test is always changing. They address it in lecture, you strike it out, write the correct thing, and move on. Admittedly, the organization of the notes did frustrate me but I made lemonade and it was delicious. If you're an mnemonic person you're gonna love the Pebbles. I'm personally not but I'll be damned if I wasn't saved by a few on my test date.
6) Tutoring: You get a minimum of 2 1-hour sessions each week. If your test date is getting close they try to get you more. The actual sessions are what you make of it. Most often they work on using and reinforcing the test taking strategy but I had a few where I wanted to review a topic and we did just that. Most go through a small number of questions and they have you explain what your thought process is, ask you relevant questions about it, and try to give you a framework to arrive at the answer.
7) Lectures: Varied. Personally I put them on a spectrum of "WOW I never heard it that way before" to "yeah, ok, I got it already". Some people are better lecturers than others, thats the way the world is. Every one I had delivered the material just fine. This isn't medical school. The lectures are not designed for for teaching in the strictest sense. This is a review course and I think with that perspective, it's done well. They are given by Dr. N, the tutors, and another faculty member, but mostly the tutors. While I was there we had a few days with computer issues but it all worked out fine. They are a mix of STEP 1 and STEP 2, which I found really strange at first but they make it work. I can't say for STEP 1, but for STEP 2 prep this was actually really helpful because STEP 2 incorporates things from STEP 1 and it gave me a nice 10 minute mental break where my attention didn't have to be focused as hard and it's good to be reminded of some mechanisms and concepts without the pressure of being required to know all the minutia.
8) Drills: My favorite. Round table respectful sequence of ripping through facts and details on the topic of the day. This is split for STEP 1 and STEP 2 but combined for Pharm. Don't know the answer? No pressure. Pass and it goes to the next person. I had a marble notebook with me during these sessions and I'd write whatever I didn't know in it. That was an excellent focused review for me later. The tutors lead these sessions and as they get to know you, they tailor their questions to things you may have recently reviewed with them, or things they they think you may know, or stuff they asked you yesterday and you should know but you don't for whatever reason but you won't forget it now!
9) I was shocked by who the students were. I assumed that it would be mostly IMGs and maybe an FMG. I was partially correct. Met and studied alongside students from everywhere. Estimate 30%/60%/10% during my time there from US/IMG/FMG respectively. This is my best guess.

DL;DR

---I needed to pass COMP after multiple failures and with my base knowledge, their guidance, and 5 weeks of no BS studying and practice I did it. Sat for COMP at the end of 3 weeks and sat for STEP 2 at the end of week 5. Awaiting STEP 2 CK result now. Feeling confident.
---Freedom. Just because you can do what you want, doesn't mean you should. I picked my dates ahead of time. Dr. N and I made a plan for me to accomplish my goals, and all I did was follow through. It wasn't easy but it was simple.
--- At least #4-8 above. Do it.
 
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Phloston

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Jan 17, 2012
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Typically first-time posters with reviews like this are fake accounts. I've notified the moderator.