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USMLE Official 2018 Step 1 Experiences and Scores Thread

Discussion in 'Step I' started by Foot Fetish, Oct 15, 2017.

  1. lucky01

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    Would love to hear more about the jump in points! What exactly did you do to increase your scores dramatically?
     
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  2. Barry'sAneurysm

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    That makes me feel better lol, I have been looking those ones up and have gotten like 15 wrong so far! :/
     
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  3. Lannister

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    Yeah I've been doing about 3 hours a day and it's been a little rough. I've definitely been focusing more on step studying than useless lecture material. My grades have dropped a bit, luckily still above average but not as much as before.
     
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  4. mistafab

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    Took step 1 today. Felt pretty good.

    I think it is probably a lot more fair than people think it is going to be. Lots and lots of “gimmies” where you either know the fact or you don’t. Overall, it just felt like a really long uworld sim 2.
     
  5. DubbiDoctor

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    What were your practice test scores?
     
  6. mistafab

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    I had a post about this earlier but off the top of my head:

    CBSE 230-232
    Form 17 238
    Form 15 232-235
    Uworld sim 1 247
    Uworld sim 2 254

     
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  7. OP
    OP
    Foot Fetish

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    I'm falling behind in my schedule due to research obligations...I've spent the last few days writing papers. Totally sucks, and I'm beginning to get anxious. I have nearly 4000 Anki cards that have backed up. It will take a few marathon sessions to kill them :(
     
  8. starlite911

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    Feeling like the high score might've been a fluke...
    Took UWSA2 today = 22 wrong / 254 (curve was steeper than I expected, but oh well), immediately followed by the free 120 with an 88%
    A little bummed since I've heard UW tends to overpredict, but hoping I can break 250 on the real deal a week from today :(
     
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  9. Pepe18

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    You're in a great spot. How much you improve in dedicated depends on how much you prestudied. I have friends who went up over 50 points to get 250+ because they didn't prestudy at all. Many of the people I know who did prestudy (like me) went up 10-20.

    Based on what I've seen with friends, if you drill hard the next 8 weeks, I think 240+ is perfectly attainable and a 250+ wouldn't be surprising
     
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  10. SmallGirlBigDreams

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    I've been following your posts for awhile -- you're so well prepared, don't worry about these few days. Your memory hasn't lost any of the minutiae you've gathered, and the discipline/routine you've had studying for this exam will carry through despite your change in schedule due to research. A few days is a few extra points in someone who is cramming/re-learning things for the first time, but you've been preparing for a YEAR, so the gains would be minimal at this point. Good luck man!
     
    #1010 SmallGirlBigDreams, Apr 14, 2018
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2018
  11. The Knife & Gun Club

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    Just an update - took NBME 15 today. 4 weeks since my last NBME, 3 more weeks of classes to go, then 5 weeks of dedicated.

    NBME 13 (12 weeks out): 200
    NBME 15 (8 weeks out): 217

    Goal is to reach 240, but I'd still be happy with anything over 230.

    Next step - watch all of sketchy micro in the next 3 weeks :corny:
     
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  12. oh you got plenty of time! keep at it, you can definitely hit that 240!
     
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  13. Lannister

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    For UWorld, do you guys think it's absolutely imperative to do it random, timed, and in blocks of 40? I'm definitely planning on doing random and timed, but I'm a little hesitant on doing full blocks. My reasoning for that is that I've been doing a really good job at keeping up with reviewing my answers so far, like I have literally never gotten behind on reviewing explanations, and I think the reason for that is that I have been doing shorter blocks so I never had to sit there and read explanations for 2-3 hours straight. Would it be a terrible idea to do Uworld in sets of 20?
     
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  14. starlite911

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    I don't think you have to do it in a set of 40 EVERY time (although I did), but I'd make sure you're at least doing some of 40. For me, I know endurance is one of my weaknesses, so even though UWorld is designed as learning tool, I wanted to make the blocks simulate the real thing. Like the NBMEs only have 10 extra questions per section and that somehow manages to wipe me out. BUT if you don't have issues with this, I'd say to do it in whatever way makes it easiest for you to get through. n=1, of course.
     
  15. Don't see the point of doing random times uworld. Uworld is a learning tool, so it seems like tutor and organ system based is the way to do it. You'll take enough NBMEs to practice the test environment. I feel like I get through questions way faster on tutor mode since I don't need to think back to my thinking process. I'd just add on the systems though as you get through them into the question pool so you don't forget the old stuff. At least that's what makes sense to me.
     
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  16. The Knife & Gun Club

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    I think the general idea of doing timed blocks is so you can get a feel for the kind of mental drain it takes on you when you're just popping through questions for an hour at a time.

    I think as long as you spend a bunch of time doing 40 question blocks at some point, like during dedicated, you'd be fine.

    My unofficial theory of step (adapted from the MCAT) is that theres 3 dimensions to the test:
    1) Content - do you know the concepts/details necessary?
    2) Testing skills - have you seen enough questions to be comfortable with the format/thinking style?
    3) Fatigue - does your brain run out of batteries after a couple hours?

    If you're someone who fatigues easily (like me), then the timed 40 question blocks are a big deal. If thats not really an issue for you, then don't sweat it! :thumbup:
     
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  17. UncleMinnie

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    Put it in perspective, getting some papers will do a lot more for residency application than a couple points more on Step 1 by preparing intensely. I took 3-4 days off during dedicated to get some abstracts and a grant in, and after all was said and done I am very glad that I did that.


    Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
     
  18. bananafish94

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    If you're getting a 234 on your very first practice test, the world is your oyster. You'll almost certainly improve dramatically over the course of dedicated.
     
  19. Lannister

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    Thanks for the input guys, I think I will probably stick to shorter blocks for the next few weeks and then move on to sets of 40 later. Luckily I don't have much of an issue with stamina.

    I think I agree with you about doing it timed being slightly unnecessary, since like you said I'm using it as a learning tool. I also tend to be a fairly fast test taker. But I definitely prefer random over systems based! I get bored if I focus on one subject for too long.
     
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  20. Lannister

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    I want to believe this is true! But I have this nagging doubt that I won't actually improve that much. Like I feel like I have already crammed so much information in my brain from Rx, how could there possibly be more to learn! Haha.
     
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  21. bananafish94

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    It might be that you're on the more horizontal part of the curve than people who haven't really studied for Step at all, but there's still definitely room for improvement, especially in 8 weeks! And anyway I would commit atrocities to get a 230-240 on the real thing so I'd say you're good. :)
     
  22. bananafish94

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    By the way...the rumors of NBME 19's savagery are not exaggerated. Do not take if you value your self confidence.
     
  23. The Knife & Gun Club

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    @Lannister im really happy to see your making good progress. You’re putting in the hours and it’s clearly paying dividends.

    We can do this!
     
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  24. GoljansRightBicep

    GoljansRightBicep Call Me Poppie
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    Reported



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  25. MrTaco92

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    It sounds like youre going through rx and kaplan pretty thoroughly and retaining enough to do well in both qbanks. There shouldnt be an overwhelming knowledge gap once you get to uworld but you definitely will learn some more that should help raise your score
     
  26. PleaseCallMeDoc

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    here's an update on my progression!

    CBSE: 190 (2 months out)
    NBME19: 198 (5 weeks out)
    UWSA1: 245 (4weeks out) - I knew this overpredicted lol
    NBME16: 234 (3 weeks out)
    UWSA2: 241 (1 week out, today)
    Free 117%: 87% (1 week out, today)

    Anyone have experience with the Free 117/120 percentage and the real deal?

    Overall, I'm so happy that I have been on this uptrend and hope to carry it into testday.
     
  27. Awesome progress!!
     
  28. spartan25

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    For those who have taken their exams on Mondays, how long has it taken to get the score back? 16 days or 23 days?
     
  29. The Knife & Gun Club

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    Awesome progress! You give me hope
     
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  30. SmallGirlBigDreams

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    Awesome progress and score. Did you find that your second pass of UWorld made the difference between 2-3 weeks out?
     
  31. sharkbyte

    sharkbyte Take me to the top
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    @Lannister How are the NBMEs in relation to Rx and UW questions (I know you haven't done UW yet but what about RX)? I should probably do one soon to gauge where I'm at. Test is in a little under 8 weeks.

    Also, great to see all the improvements that everyone is making. Keep up the good work guys!!
     
  32. coldcase331

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    Just wanted to post my progress so far and ask some advice from y'all:
    Test date: 6/15
    Class ends: early may
    Uworld: 71% (doing mixed material starting january with material covered, still havent added in Endocine/OBGYN/Derm yet)- 1700Q's
    Kaplan: 70%-Doing by system to try and uncover gaps a little early in each block-1200Q's
    Goal score: 240+

    The problem I'm starting to run into is that my Uworld 40-blocks have essentially plateaued in the 70's. Besides heme/onc, psych and MSK anatomy (haven't seen it since mid M1), the questions I miss are not really concentrated anywhere (ususally just forgot a random fact about a disease, but was able to get to 50/50 most of the time). What do you guys suggest in terms of trying to proceed from here? Should I just keep chugging along and fill in those random gaps as they come in Uworld? Or should I be going back to First Aid and review the systems slowely over the next few weeks? I have 3 weeks of class left and have done well enough on the past exams to kinda drop the ball on the inhouse exam.
     
  33. Lannister

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    I would say that NBME 13 was definitely harder than Rx but more or less consistent with UWorld (I've done about 200 UWorld questions via a review class, so my impression of UWorld is only based on those 200 questions). I think Rx does a really good job of teaching you the material, but the questions in Rx are usually very straightforward and I find that it's almost always very obvious what they're asking of you, whereas the NBME questions were a little more vague.
     
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  34. Lannister

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    Done with Rx, wooo. Just bought UWorld, here we go.

    Side note, my last set of questions on Rx was stupidly hard, a ton of trick questions that <40% got right. A small part of me is convinced that they saved all the hard questions for last so I would renew my subscription haha.
     
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  35. sharkbyte

    sharkbyte Take me to the top
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    I think like a week or two ago I was in the middle of a nice run of like, high 70s/low 80s on Rx (sets of 40 questions) and then I got a random ridiculously hard block where I flagged like 15-20 and got a 45%. It was painful. It's amazing how one block like that can make you feel so bad about where you stand even though it's just 40 questions haha.
     
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  36. Lannister

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    I know! Whenever that happens to me I get all pissed off and don't even want to review the questions, even though that's like the worst thing you can do after doing poorly on a block!
     
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  37. 20Hopeful16

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    I'm almost half done with UW and microbio and pharm are two of my worst subjects. I'm considering doing Rx for spot-checking these two subjects after I finish UWorld. How did you feel Rx covered microbio and pharm?
     
  38. Lannister

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    So I had absolutely no foundation for microbio. My school really doesn't teach us micro unfortunately, so going into Rx I knew absolutely nothing. By the end of Rx my % correct for micro was in the mid 80s, and I feel very good about micro. So I would say that's probably a good sign that Rx covers micro pretty well.

    I think it does a fine job with pharm too. Rx is definitely the best qbank for memorizing facts, and I think pharm requires a lot of memorization.
     
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  39. Pepe18

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    To follow up on what I posted before: I thought permit disappearing means when you click your permit it says "permit no longer available." That's what I was seeing before. This week is the 3rd Wednesday and now there is no link for my permit. The permit thing still stands
     
  40. Drkr91

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    mines gone too!
     
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  41. Rahas

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    @sahell

    NBME 4, block 4, question 27

    Its about a 22 year old with severe chest pain radiating to the back & CT scan confirms aortic dissection. Question is which of the proteins is most likely defective. Both fibrillin and elastin were options. I chose elastin, since the only feature they'd given was aortic dissection, so it seemed more appropriate than fibrillin. The few online discussions disagree with me, but I'm still unsure. What is your take on this?



    NBME 5, block 3, question 47

    This is the one with 3 graphs and how elderly maintain CO. Online disagreement between LV dilation vs LV hypertrophy.



    NBME 5, block 4, question 28

    This is the one about the mechanism behind hirsutism in post menopausal women. I remembered reading (in FA I think) that increased androgens are behind this. Most online searches echo increased testosterone as the cause (I think this includes uptodate), but some do mention an increased T:E ratio as well as decreased SHBG due to lower E. The testosterone values they've given are in the normal range, so perhaps T:E ratio is the answer? Confused!



    NBME 5, block 4, question 35

    Patient with gastrinoma, hyperstimulation of which cell is the cause behind the development of a duodenal ulcer?
    Both ECL and parietal cells could be the answer, it just depends on what they want the answer to be. How did you go about deciding this?
     
    #1041 Rahas, Apr 15, 2018
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2018
  42. 20Hopeful16

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    Thanks. Micro and pharm aren't strong points at my school and I hate memorizing and reading FA, so I think I'll give Rx a try and hopefully hammer in some minutiae a couple weeks out from the big dance.
     
  43. SmallGirlBigDreams

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    I think: Fibrillin-1 deficiency is indicative of Marfan's, in which patients are 250x more likely to have an aortic dissection than a healthy individual. Not sure what the rest of the stem says, but young age (22 y/o) is also a tip off of Marfan's, as elastin becomes weaker with increasing age.
     
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  44. The Knife & Gun Club

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    22 year old with an aortic dissection is Marfans until proven otherwise in my mind.

    The defect in Marfans is loss of Fibrillin, which crosslinks elastin and makes it stronger.

    At least thats my take on it.
     
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  45. DubbiDoctor

    DubbiDoctor SDN Gold Donor
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    Plan on doing the final two NBMES - 13 and 19?
     
  46. DubbiDoctor

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    Why not?
     
  47. starlite911

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    Curiosity got the better of me and I took NBME 19...offline though because I didn't want to be demoralized with a score.
    But then I only missed 12 questions so I got curious about scoring. My best estimates from previous posts put that at a 250-255. Any insight?

    Was pretty happy with this performance, especially since people tend to outscore this exam by at least a little!
     
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  48. DubbiDoctor

    DubbiDoctor SDN Gold Donor
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    You're definitely going to beat 255 but I sense a 260 in your future! What are your plans for your last days of studying?
     
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  49. sharkbyte

    sharkbyte Take me to the top
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    So I got a 210 on my CBSE, 9 weeks out. Not too bad, I guess? I'll take it :whistle:
     
  50. Reperfused

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    Great score!
    How did you find NBME 19 in comparison to NBME 17 (or any other NBME)? Was it easier/harder/more vague/more twisted/any-adjective-that-describes-it?
    Thanks
     

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