Lothric

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Aug 30, 2016
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Hey folks,

Guy from Sweden here. Since the start of medical school here in Sweden I have had the goal of doing residency in the US and while 1 year has passed since then I do question the way I deal with all the study material. Am I doing it correct if the desired goal is a minimum of 262? Main focus is on step 1 right now, which I will be taking in August 2019.

Right now I use FA, pathoma and Robbins Basic Pathology for our pathology course. The latter is mostly used when trying to understand the concepts in FA rather than just memorizing them. I will now list the kind of literature I've been using so far:

For the physiology course, I used FA and Costanzo's physiology (not the review book; the big one).
For the microbiology course, I used FA and Clinical Microbiology Made Ridiculously Simple.
For the pharmacology, I used FA and Lippincott Illustrated Reviews: Pharmacology
For the biochemistry, I only used FA + Youtube.
For the neuroanatomy/neuroscience I used FA and Purves Neuroscience.

The principle is the same for other topics - FA has always been involved in conjunction with a thicker, more detailed literature. On top of that, my own school's histology/anatomy presentations and associated texts have been used (to pass my school's own exams).

But here comes the twist: While I did list Purves Neuroscience, Clinical Microbiology Made Ridiculously Simple etc. that does not mean I've read them all from page 1 to the end. I read only FA this way and read the same material in those sources just to understand them better (and to understand the concepts my own school thinks is important to know). So my first question will be: Should I read all the detailed material completely at least once and then focus entirely on FA while making occasional checks in the detailed material, or keep doing what I'm currently doing?

Question banks are vital. I know that. However, the plan is to begin with the three banks Kaplan, UWorld and RX starting in the summer 2018 and work on them from that time. 1 year should be fine for the question banks, no? Note that the only time where I'm completely off from my school is during the middle of June-end of August.

By the point it is August 2019, I will have passed 5 school semesters in total (2,5 years of medical school). This is close to when the US students take their step 1.

Additional information: - I study 47 hours every weekend consistently. Should this be higher/lower with my desired score in mind? Note that not all of these hours are used to study FA or material relevant for USMLE but also things that my school finds relevant (which usually is irrelevant for USMLE).
- My IQ is average (100).



Any feedback is appreciated!
 
Last edited:

bashwell

5+ Year Member
Mar 20, 2013
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Hey folks,

Guy from Sweden here. Since the start of medical school here in Sweden I have had the goal of doing residency in the US and while 1 year has passed since then I do question the way I deal with all the study material. Am I doing it correct if the desired goal is a minimum of 262? Main focus is on step 1 right now, which I will be taking in August 2019.

Right now I use FA, pathoma and Robbin's Basic Pathology for our pathology course. The latter is mostly used when trying to understand the concepts in FA rather than just memorizing them. I will now list the kind of literature I've been using so far:

For the physiology course, I used FA and Costanzo's physiology (not the review book; the big one).
For the microbiology course, I used FA and Microbiology made ridiculously easy.
For the pharmacology, I used FA and Lippincott Illustrated Reviews: Pharmacology
For the biochemistry, I only used FA + Youtube.
For the neuroanatomy/neuroscience I used FA and Purves Neuroscience.

The principle is the same for other topics - FA has always been involved in conjunction with a thicker, more detailed literature. On top of that, my own school's histology/anatomy presentations and associated texts have been used (to pass my school's own exams).

But here comes the twist: While I did list Purves Neuroscience, Microbiology made ridiculously easy etc. that does not mean I've read them all from page 1 to the end. I read only FA this way and read the same material in those sources just to understand them better (and to understand the concepts my own school thinks is important to know). So my first question will be: Should I read all the detailed material completely at least once and then focus entirely on FA while making occasional checks in the detailed material, or keep doing what I'm currently doing?

Question banks are vital. I know that. However, the plan is to begin with the three banks Kaplan, UWorld and RX starting in the summer 2018 and work on them from that time. 1 year should be fine for the question banks, no? Note that the only time where I'm completely off from my school is during the middle of June-end of August.

By the point it is August 2019, I will have passed 5 school semesters in total (2,5 years of medical school). This is close to when the US students take their step 1.

Additional information: I study 47 hours every weekend consistently. Should this be higher/lower with my desired score in mind?

Any feedback is appreciated!
So I guess your other thread asking for the highly specific of 262 score wasn't enough?

Desired score of 262

Given you have so much time and so many resources to study for Step 1, a lot more than most Americans have, I'd be more surprised if you didn't score a 262!
 
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Lothric

2+ Year Member
Aug 30, 2016
230
19
Status
Medical Student
So I guess your other thread asking for the highly specific of 262 score wasn't enough?

Desired score of 262

Given you have so much time and so many resources to study for Step 1, a lot more than most Americans have, I'd be more surprised if you didn't score a 262!
Thanks Bryan,

We have summer holidays every middle June-end of August. Besides that, the hours should be similar. On the other hand, I've read 1 additional semester too (2,5 years in total) compared to when Americans normally take step 1 (after 2 years).
 
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bashwell

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Mar 20, 2013
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Thanks Bryan,

We have summer holidays every middle June-end of August. Besides that, the hours should be similar. On the other hand, I've read 1 additional semester too compared to when Americans normally take step 1 (after 2 years).
1) I think most Americans have about ~6 weeks dedicated to Step 1.

2) So to answer your question, I think it depends on your learning style. The material is the same across many different resources. You just have to learn and understand as much of it as you can. Some people do it by only reading review books, others by mixing it with textbooks, others through watching videos like DIT or B&B, some use systems like Firecracker or make their own flashcards with Anki (or use Bros), and so on. There are many different variations on how best to study for Step 1. However, most will recommend UFAP +/- SketchyMicro (SketchyPharm is more debatable). UFAP = USMLE World + First Aid + Pathoma. If you know those three resources inside out, back to front, then you will likely do very well on Step 1.

3) The good thing about your plan is that you have a lot of time and flexibility in your schedule so you can go through many different resources, if you want, until you figure out what works best for you.

4) No one can definitively tell you if that's enough for the highly specific "262," but just do your best, since that's all anyone can do.
 

A$AP

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Sep 12, 2016
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Nothing can guarantee you any score, especially a score that high. The best you can do is prepare as best as you can using UFAP, and it looks like you have a solid plan and a hell of a lot of time to carry it out. As you will quickly realize, simply knowing all the key facts and ideas cannot guarantee you a thing, because the exam can twist, integrate, and force you to apply things in 32488762 different ways which you simply cannot predict, but what you can do is prepare your very best for the questions, which it seems like you definitely will.
 

SynapticDoctah

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