Apr 14, 2019
5
6
Status
  1. Pre-Dental
Hello everyone
I'll start with exam day and then talk about my study experience. keeping in mind that I graduated many years ago (international student) and had to study for part 1 from scratch not remembering most things. (I WILL NOT SHARE ANY SPECIFIC Questions, it's against the rules).

On exam day depending on the exam location even though your exam might be on 8am, you might have to wait more than 30 minutes to get admitted because of large number of test takers. you'll feel very very nervous and that's OK. just be prepared mentally to wait.
it's normal to feel like you can't remember many things before the exam. don't worry it'll all come back to you.
the exam room was not very cold so I suggest wearing something thin and bring a jacket just in case.
the exam is 400 question. 2 sections of 200 divide by 30 min break. However, after every 100 you must submit the questions and cannot go back to them. you get 15 min optional break in the middle of each section. you can do anything you want during the breaks (review, eat, etc..)
The exam WAS NOT HARD. I read a lot that the exam is much harder than ASDA question or that dental decks are not enough anymore. it is all NOT TRUE. the exam was as hard as the last few released ASDA questions (M,N) and had MANY repeats. some were exactly the same while others were rephrased. At the same time it was not easy. you need to UNDERSTAND the concepts not just memorize random facts (when reading anything you don't understand look it up online). there will be few question that are very confusing but those were very few.
You will see testlet questions at the end of section 1 and beginning of section 2 (less than a 100 qs total), meaning they give you details & history of a patient and ask you 5-10 questions about it. I have to say those were the hardest part of the exam but still very doable. overall I was very comfortable during the exam and walked out feeling good. the main point I wanted to make was that most of the exam was from ASDA released question + dental decks /or first aid. if you study those two well you should be able to make it. keeping in mind that the questions are randomized and you may receive harder question but still the majority should be covered by studying from those 2 sources.

Breakdown by section: dental anatomy questions were the easiest and most straightforward. if you study the decks and ASDA it should be enough. anatomy was mostly simple direct stuff from the decks with very few complex ones. biochemistry/physiology was also not hard, many were direct while some required thinking but still not impossible to get (usmle videos/youtube helped alot in this regard). micro/patho was probably the most challenging, most were direct questions but others were detailed and required great knowledge about a disease or a microorganism. all in all mostly easy stuff with some hard ones in between.

Next is study experience. I studied for 3.5 months but that was without weekend and I took many days off. study time was between 6-8 hours on average and then 9-11 hours on the last week. I started by watching usmle videos 2010 (green background) as a way to remember the basics since I have graduated many years ago. along side the videos I read first aid part 1 once. then I started studying for real from dental decks 2014. I studied it 3 times in total which took the majority of time then I studied ASDA released question (from G to N) once marking the questions that was hard to understand and restudying just those a second time (this was a very important part since you will see repeats). final week consisted of a quick decks review plus the questions I marked from ASDA.

General advice
-You will forget things. when I was studying for the exam. I would finish anatomy and start something else but when I come back especially at first I felt like I forgot most stuff. that is NORMAL. don't freak out it's a big exam and you'll feel like you can't remember things, even right until the moment when you take the exam. and then everything will come back. so DON'T WORRY.

-Don't study from too many sources. you'll confuse yourself and feel bad because you have a ton to finish. just stick to ONE source plus the ASDA questions (either first aid or dental deck). if you are paranoid like me then you can add missing stuff to dental deck from first aid or vice versa (depending on what your main source is), this will make sure that you cover everything.

-Never leave any subject. cover everything because you never know what you might get. I didn't get any questions below head & neck stuff but others do. so study everything.

-There are many mistake in decks & first aid. you will not catch them at first but as you study you'll start to notice (especially if you look up things online). another helpful thing is that if you study dental decks, after you finish it a couple of times go read first aid once then you'll be able to cross reference and find the mistakes. vice versa if you're read first aid.

-Take some time off. you will get bored and tired so it's necessary to take breaks. watch a movie or go out with friends and family. you'll study better after a little time off.

-DON'T LISTEN to people telling you it's very hard. it is not and you can easily pass if you study for it.


Specific advice about studying each section
Dental anatomy: focus on tooth morphology, eruption and shedding time. Specific calcification time & shape of root chamber (both are summarized in simple table in first aid). also focus on working and non working movement and make sure you can visualize it in your head. no need for special techniques or tricks it's very simple if you know the basics (YouTube can help).

Anatomy: focus on nerves (especially CNV,CNVII,CNX+ sympathetic and para systems) and arteries, muscles (origin, insertion, function), bone(types of bone, growth fracture). another thing is look at a lot of pictures and videos so you can visualize the location of bones and other structures in space.

Biochem/Phys: know everything about the basic reactions (TCA cycle, glycolysis, etc...), you'll probably get general questions and specific ones about steps so while you don't need to memorize every step you have to know the important ones. amino acids and proteins are also high yield (the decks are better in this regard compared to first aid). as for physio you have to understand everything (usmle videos helped me the most), once you do it will make all other subject (specifically biochem and patho) much easier to understand.

Micro/patho: for micro I say focus on the bacteria and viruses in the decks, 90% of stuff will be about it. also fungi, make sure you read every word in deck or FA about fungi. as for patho you'll always get questions about tumors so study those well. for the rest of the systems you might get question about anything so it's better not to leave any system unstudied.

.....That's all for now, if you have questions let me know. also don't ask me about other study materials aside from the ones mentioned above since I don't know anything about it.
 
Last edited:
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zurry

2+ Year Member
May 1, 2017
10
1
wow, so in depth. Thanks a lot! Sometimes I overwhelm myself studying from different sources. realizing i need to focus and face my decks/FA with youtube and asda released questions. thanks again
 
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Jun 15, 2019
1
0
Status
  1. Dentist
We are so grateful for your help.
I'm so worried about the exam but now I think I've a plan what I should do next.
Thanks a lot for sharing your experiences with us.
 
May 25, 2019
13
2
Status
  1. Dentist
Hey, does the exam have tooth picture questions and working /non working movement with the arrows. Dental anatomy in ASDA papers has these and you might be aware of those. But I read in SDN threads that there were no longer applied/ part of the exam. Is this true and correct. No tooth picture questions?? Thanks
 
Mar 3, 2019
23
3
Status
  1. Dental Student
Hey, does the exam have tooth picture questions and working /non working movement with the arrows. Dental anatomy in ASDA papers has these and you might be aware of those. But I read in SDN threads that there were no longer applied/ part of the exam. Is this true and correct. No tooth picture questions?? Thanks
When I took my test I had questions about working/ non working movements. There was a very informative video on a youtube on how to understand this concept better, you can check it out - very helpful.
I don't remember questions with teeth pictures. But be ready anyway, because you never know. However, if you get one - probably it will be just 1 question, not many.
 
May 25, 2019
13
2
Status
  1. Dentist
When I took my test I had questions about working/ non working movements. There was a very informative video on a youtube on how to understand this concept better, you can check it out - very helpful.
I don't remember questions with teeth pictures. But be ready anyway, because you never know. However, if you get one - probably it will be just 1 question, not many.
Do you remember, the video title. I saw maany but still confused. And the picture question with arrows is more confusing to me.
 
Mar 3, 2019
23
3
Status
  1. Dental Student
Do you remember, the video title. I saw maany but still confused. And the picture question with arrows is more confusing to me.
It's called - "Master Occlusion in 5 minutes - NBDE Part 1 Boards Study"
I pasted a link for you as well. It's a 15 minutes video, with a lot of examples. Really helped me to understand this. Hope this helps.
 

247_sandwich

Navy Corpsman (2009-2014) turned Dental Student
2+ Year Member
Mar 24, 2017
21
14
San Francisco
Status
  1. Dental Student
Hello everyone
I'll start with exam day and then talk about my study experience. keeping in mind that I graduated many years ago (international student) and had to study for part 1 from scratch not remembering most things. (I WILL NOT SHARE ANY SPECIFIC Questions, it's against the rules).

On exam day depending on the exam location even though your exam might be on 8am, you might have to wait more than 30 minutes to get admitted because of large number of test takers. you'll feel very very nervous and that's OK. just be prepared mentally to wait.
it's normal to feel like you can't remember many things before the exam. don't worry it'll all come back to you.
the exam room was not very cold so I suggest wearing something thin and bring a jacket just in case.
the exam is 400 question. 2 sections of 200 divide by 30 min break. However, after every 100 you must submit the questions and cannot go back to them. you get 15 min optional break in the middle of each section. you can do anything you want during the breaks (review, eat, etc..)
The exam WAS NOT HARD. I read a lot that the exam is much harder than ASDA question or that dental decks are not enough anymore. it is all NOT TRUE. the exam was as hard as the last few released ASDA questions (M,N) and had MANY repeats. some were exactly the same while others were rephrased. At the same time it was not easy. you need to UNDERSTAND the concepts not just memorize random facts (when reading anything you don't understand look it up online). there will be few question that are very confusing but those were very few.
You will see testlet questions at the end of section 1 and beginning of section 2 (less than a 100 qs total), meaning they give you details & history of a patient and ask you 5-10 questions about it. I have to say those were the hardest part of the exam but still very doable. overall I was very comfortable during the exam and walked out feeling good. the main point I wanted to make was that most of the exam was from ASDA released question + dental decks /or first aid. if you study those two well you should be able to make it. keeping in mind that the questions are randomized and you may receive harder question but still the majority should be covered by studying from those 2 sources.

Breakdown by section: dental anatomy questions were the easiest and most straightforward. if you study the decks and ASDA it should be enough. anatomy was mostly simple direct stuff from the decks with very few complex ones. biochemistry/physiology was also not hard, many were direct while some required thinking but still not impossible to get (usmle videos/youtube helped alot in this regard). micro/patho was probably the most challenging, most were direct questions but others were detailed and required great knowledge about a disease or a microorganism. all in all mostly easy stuff with some hard ones in between.

Next is study experience. I studied for 3.5 months but that was without weekend and I took many days off. study time was between 6-8 hours on average and then 9-11 hours on the last week. I started by watching usmle videos 2010 (green background) as a way to remember the basics since I have graduated many years ago. along side the videos I read first aid part 1 once. then I started studying for real from dental decks 2014. I studied it 3 times in total which took the majority of time then I studied ASDA released question (from G to N) once marking the questions that was hard to understand and restudying just those a second time (this was a very important part since you will see repeats). final week consisted of a quick decks review plus the questions I marked from ASDA.

General advice
-You will forget things. when I was studying for the exam. I would finish anatomy and start something else but when I come back especially at first I felt like I forgot most stuff. that is NORMAL. don't freak out it's a big exam and you'll feel like you can't remember things, even right until the moment when you take the exam. and then everything will come back. so DON'T WORRY.

-Don't study from too many sources. you'll confuse yourself and feel bad because you have a ton to finish. just stick to ONE source plus the ASDA questions (either first aid or dental deck). if you are paranoid like me then you can add missing stuff to dental deck from first aid or vice versa (depending on what your main source is), this will make sure that you cover everything.

-Never leave any subject. cover everything because you never know what you might get. I didn't get any questions below head & neck stuff but others do. so study everything.

-There are many mistake in decks & first aid. you will not catch them at first but as you study you'll start to notice (especially if you look up things online). another helpful thing is that if you study dental decks, after you finish it a couple of times go read first aid once then you'll be able to cross reference and find the mistakes. vice versa if you're read first aid.

-Take some time off. you will get bored and tired so it's necessary to take breaks. watch a movie or go out with friends and family. you'll study better after a little time off.

-DON'T LISTEN to people telling you it's very hard. it is not and you can easily pass if you study for it.


Specific advice about studying each section
Dental anatomy: focus on tooth morphology, eruption and shedding time. Specific calcification time & shape of root chamber (both are summarized in simple table in first aid). also focus on working and non working movement and make sure you can visualize it in your head. no need for special techniques or tricks it's very simple if you know the basics (YouTube can help).

Anatomy: focus on nerves (especially CNV,CNVII,CNX+ sympathetic and para systems) and arteries, muscles (origin, insertion, function), bone(types of bone, growth fracture). another thing is look at a lot of pictures and videos so you can visualize the location of bones and other structures in space.

Biochem/Phys: know everything about the basic reactions (TCA cycle, glycolysis, etc...), you'll probably get general questions and specific ones about steps so while you don't need to memorize every step you have to know the important ones. amino acids and proteins are also high yield (the decks are better in this regard compared to first aid). as for physio you have to understand everything (usmle videos helped me the most), once you do it will make all other subject (specifically biochem and patho) much easier to understand.

Micro/patho: for micro I say focus on the bacteria and viruses in the decks, 90% of stuff will be about it. also fungi, make sure you read every word in deck or FA about fungi. as for patho you'll always get questions about tumors so study those well. for the rest of the systems you might get question about anything so it's better not to leave any system unstudied.

.....That's all for now, if you have questions let me know. also don't ask me about other study materials aside from the ones mentioned above since I don't know anything about it.

Thanks for much for this review!
 
Apr 14, 2019
5
6
Status
  1. Pre-Dental
Hey, does the exam have tooth picture questions and working /non working movement with the arrows. Dental anatomy in ASDA papers has these and you might be aware of those. But I read in SDN threads that there were no longer applied/ part of the exam. Is this true and correct. No tooth picture questions?? Thanks
There are no pictures in dental anatomy. As far as I know this has been the case for years.
 
Jul 4, 2019
3
0
Status
  1. Dentist
Hi
I am planning to take my exam in December. Could you please advise me as to whether I should buy all the asda reprints for 344$ or some of them? I am confused about that.
Thanks in advance
 
Mar 3, 2019
23
3
Status
  1. Dental Student
Hi
I am planning to take my exam in December. Could you please advise me as to whether I should buy all the asda reprints for 344$ or some of them? I am confused about that.
Thanks in advance
Just buy everything and be well prepared. It is better to invest and pass the test within first try.
Some of the test questions repeat but there are a lot of different and new ones.
Good luck.
 
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ortho_mds

2+ Year Member
Apr 21, 2017
109
34
Status
  1. Dentist
Hi
I am planning to take my exam in December. Could you please advise me as to whether I should buy all the asda reprints for 344$ or some of them? I am confused about that.
Thanks in advance
You can find the ASDA papers online to download.....u don't need to buy them....invest your money in a app for NBDE test simulation practice.....so that you can practice to sit for 8 hours and take your exam
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Jul 4, 2019
3
0
Status
  1. Dentist
Just buy everything and be well prepared. It is better to invest and pass the test within first try.
Some of the test questions repeat but there are a lot of different and new ones.
Good luck.
Hi
Yeah..I guess I should get them all. Because everywhere I have been reading that they are a must for nbde. Better not make any compromises
Thanks
 
Mar 12, 2019
165
190
Great post.

I recently sat and passed 1. Just a couple of my thoughts to add incase anyone reads this.

I walked out of the exam feeling like I failed. It was a stupid exam. I was counting questions I was confident about and it was around 30%. The rest of the questions I would say was about 50% blind guess and 50% narrowing it down to 2 answers and then guessing. Definitely did not feel good about it. But time is not a huge issue I finished early (not because I did well, but because I either knew the qn or I didnt so it didnt take long).

A random fact that came up so many times that I was glad I knew was the mesial slope of the primary canine and maxillary 1st premolar is longer than the distal slope. All other teeth the mesial slope is shorter. This came up so many times!

I am a dentist who graduated years ago from Canada and was just recently writing these boards. So I hadn't done this theory for about 7 years so I really felt like I was learning it all from scratch.

I went through dental decks once. Honestly it was information overload so I felt I didnt learn anything. There were lots of things in the exam I was like "I remember reading that in decks" but I only read it once so I dont remember specifics and could just answer the qn with an educated guess.

I got the mastery app which was good because it was much simpler so I felt I was actually learning. I did it twice. But honestly it only represented about 10% of qns on the exam. When I went through the app I got about 55% qns right (you can view this on the app). But I did feel it was a good way to learn.

I studied on and off for 3 weeks then solidly for 2 weeks coming into the exam.

If I could redo it... I would start off with mastery app twice, then do decks once.

Hope that helps
 
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Jul 15, 2019
3
0
Hi. I am planning to start with this whole process.Is there any possibility to please share your experience with getting and sending required documents (especially confirmation form ), time you have for that after creating a profile.
Thank you.
 
Apr 14, 2019
5
6
Status
  1. Pre-Dental
Hi. I am planning to start with this whole process.Is there any possibility to please share your experience with getting and sending required documents (especially confirmation form ), time you have for that after creating a profile.
Thank you.
Hello friend, I'm not sure what you're referring to but if you are talking about signing up and paying for the exam then it's on the ADA site. you will need to apply first and have your owner member ID, this process needs ECE to send your transcript to ADA. Then sign in to your account and choose NBDE and after you pay for part 1 they will give you 6 months to reserve a date. In other words, if you pay for the exam you must be ready to take it in 6 month or less. you can reserve a month or even less before but it highly depends on the avaliable spots and testing centers near you so it's always better to do it 2 months in advance or something like that.
 
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