pre clinicals Basic science NBME shelf exams Med school

thedocfuture

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Jul 7, 2012
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    Hey fellow med students,

    I have been accepted to a very low tier med school that changed their testing system 2 years ago to a system where EVERY exam question is taken from a pool of NBME "shelf" basic science questions.

    I understand the benefit of practicing for USMLE step 1 and since im not a very good standardized test taker, this will definitely be useful, however, I am worried about my grades for the actual classes. I took a 1st year medical school course last semester in my SMP and the final exam was the NMBE "shelf exam ... I scored in the 40th Percentile (raw=450 the mean is 500 :/) which with the curve came out to be around a 70ish.

    If I am accepted to another medical school (low tier as well) will I be better off choosing a school in which I might possible get better class grades or sticking with this one which could possibly get me a better Step 1 score?
    Any opinions are welcomed!
     

    FIREitUP

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      i don't buy this "I'm not a good standardized test taker" statement. after taking enough board style questions you get used to them and understand what they are looking for in the answer. Consider yourself lucky to have this constant practice during the year through NBME's rather than having to worry about what random trivia your teacher is going to put on the exam to make sure the average isn't too high. You'll improve as the year progresses and taking these NBME's will help prepare you better for Step 1.
       

      thedocfuture

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      Jul 7, 2012
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        Thank you for the input, the problem is that I am REALLY good at the trivial stuff, and I miss the big point.. if it wouldnt have been for doing so bad in the final (shelf-NBME) exam of the med school class I took, I would have gotten an A in the class. But yeah I do understand that hopefully i will get used to it.. but it didnt happen with the mcat after 2 years... thats why im going to a low tier school! But again, I appreciate the encouragement !
         
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        JJMrK

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          The testing system you describe is a huge advantage. Pre-clinical grades don't mean much; step 1 is essentially the most important thing on your residency application.
           

          JShephard

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            The testing system you describe is a huge advantage. Pre-clinical grades don't mean much; step 1 is essentially the most important thing on your residency application.

            Exactly what I was going to say.

            My schools tests so much random stuff. I wish I had those NBME tests.

            There are numerous advantages to that testing format.
             

            FIREitUP

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              Thank you for the input, the problem is that I am REALLY good at the trivial stuff, and I miss the big point.. if it wouldnt have been for doing so bad in the final (shelf-NBME) exam of the med school class I took, I would have gotten an A in the class. But yeah I do understand that hopefully i will get used to it.. but it didnt happen with the mcat after 2 years... thats why im going to a low tier school! But again, I appreciate the encouragement !

              you'll be alright. you'll adjust and it'll be better in the long run, trust me.
               
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