Lifetime Donor
7+ Year Member
Mar 13, 2012
Resident [Any Field]
I'm applying for psychiatry right now. Step 1 is 238, Step 2 grade is pending. Problem is, I failed two blocks in my preclinical years. I failed my very first block of medical school (along with about 20% of my class). I just hadn't properly adjusted to medical school studying and was completely out of depth during the first test (we have only one exam per block). I also failed my fifth block of medical school. We had a multiple choice and handwritten section. I aced the multiple choice but my handwriting has always been poor. I had to slow down considerably to write out answers and ended up failing that exam (and thus block).

Since then, my clinical grades have been average. No failures or anything remotely like that. My question is, how do I address this on my application? My school advised me to simply write, "Block 1 remediated successfully, Block 5 remediated successfully" on my MSPE but I feel that some more context would be helpful.
Do you write your own MSPE? That's weird.

Personally I think that's all that should be said. You're clearly not deficient knowledge-wise. What else would you really say about it on your MSPE or app? I think you're better off with it being short and to the point, and then if they want to know more about it (and they probably will), you can elaborate in the interview when they ask.


No Meat, No Treat
Staff member
10+ Year Member
Mar 6, 2005
Attending Physician
Short and simple. "I failed and then successfully remediated these courses. No further flags on the record." The more you try to explain it, the more it will look like you're making excuses for yourself. Your MSPE will state something about it.