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How early for Step 2?

Discussion in 'Step II' started by SJBX, Mar 11, 2007.

  1. SJBX

    SJBX Member
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    How early do I need to take Step 2 CK? I've heard Sept. 1st is a good cut off. Any one else agree or disagree?
     
  2. Moozer

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    The general rule that I've heard for step 2 is if you are at or below the average on Step 1, go ahead and take Step 2 early so you can show a score improvement on your residency application. If you are above the average, with a score good enough for your specialty of interest, you can put it off until later in the year. Hope that helps! :)
     
  3. adcomm

    adcomm snitch
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    Remembering that if you take it before Sept 1, you will not have the option of withholding your score from your residency application. (After 9/1 you can choose to not report it, although you may still get asked).
     
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  4. loveumms

    loveumms Senior Member
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    The answer totally depends on who you talk to.

    Here is my opinion -

    If you did well on step I and you are going into a competitive field then it's probably advisable to take II just to prove that you can score well. Plus, it's unlikely that you will decrease your score significantly (I didn't say it doesn't happen but, it's unlikely). Many people are scared to take CK if they had a decent step I for fear of decreases in score. Most of the people will increase their score.

    If you did poorly on step I and are going into a competitive field then definitely take it early. Study hard and do well because it will mean something towards your application.

    If you are going into a less competitive field then you may want to hold off on Step II. Let it be said that even the less competitive fields have competitive residency spots. Internal medicine is considered 'easier' to get into then derm but, there are still many very competitive IM spots. So, depending on how strong your step I score (PLUS your grades and evals) you might get away with taking it later.

    Here is my personal experience. I only did 11 points better on step II then step I (229 to 240). I decided to hold off on step II b/c I just didn't have the time to take it earlier in the year plus, I was just plain old tired from third year. I kind of regretted that decision when I was studying b/c many of the subjects I had not studied in over a year. But, after I took the test I realized that I actually may have done myself a favor b/c I reviewed all the important subjects a few months before residency.

    Just make sure you schedule step II CS as early as possible. Most schools require that you at least sit for both step II's to graduate and some require that you have passed both. Even though it's unlikely to fail CS, it seems to happen and if you need to retake it, you might not be able to do so by the end of the school year if you take it late (plus, it feels good to get CS over with as soon as possible).

    Best of luck ;)

    Also, it will look bad if you don't release your scores. Program directors will ask and if you say you took it and didn't release the score many will wonder why and this might be considered negative on your application.
     

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