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QBank: Take tests by discipline or "mixed"?

Discussion in 'Step I' started by amy2003uva, May 5, 2007.

  1. amy2003uva

    amy2003uva Senior Member 5+ Year Member

    Feb 2, 2005
    I'm currently taking 50q blocks based on the discipline I'm studying at the moment, and am taking "mixed" (random) 50q exams on Sundays.

    How are you all using Qbank/USMLEworld? My husband is doing only mixed exams and I wonder which approach is better.
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  3. TX_Longhorn

    TX_Longhorn OU sucks 5+ Year Member

    Apr 18, 2004
    Austin, TX

    try doin both. doin 50 mixed a day is the key. u might start out low but u ll go up as u relearn old stuff. in addition, try doin a few more questions pertaining to what ur studin for that day.
  4. blz

    blz Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jan 7, 2002
    I start the day off with 50 questions mixed (of topics I've already covered, I keep adding each day with new topics finished - that way I keep getting refreshed) then finish the day off with 50 questions of the topic I was studying. It's good to do questions first thing in the morning because it kick starts the day (I always have trouble starting.) I'm a little against the totally random question thing because I think it's stupid to just do questions about topics you haven't studied yet because 1) you get stupid questions wrong because you didn't sit down and memorize a detail 2) your score is less of a reflection of your abilities and 3) it takes longer to review your answers if it's something you haven't covered. I like this method because I don't have to spend over an hour going over questions I've gotten wrong. Plus, I feel like I gain more insight from incorrect answers because I understand the material at a greater level.
  5. ertugrul

    ertugrul 10+ Year Member

    Sep 6, 2005
    I'm second
  6. amy2003uva

    amy2003uva Senior Member 5+ Year Member

    Feb 2, 2005
    thanks everyone. i haven't ventured out into random tests yet, for the exact above mentioned reason. hopefully as i cover more ground i'll feel more comfortable doing that. any other opinions?
  7. DoctorFunk

    DoctorFunk Get down with the boogie 7+ Year Member

    May 17, 2004
    The Good Land
    I started recently by taking random blocks of 50 questions and was amazed at how long it took to review the answers and annotate them into First Aid. I was spending at least 2 hours just reviewing for every hour block of questions. I'm hoping that by doing blocks of material covered more recently I will not only perform better but spend less time annotating because I will have a better idea of the information actually covered already in FA.

    I still plan on doing a number of random blocks though (maybe one random and one pre-set per day). There's no replacement for the practice you get in having to completely shift mental gears from subject to subject when going through random questions.
  8. UCLAstudent

    UCLAstudent I'm a luck dragon! 10+ Year Member

    Sep 6, 2002
    I do random sets. I used to do them based on what I'd already reviewed, but now I've decided to use QBank as a learning tool rather than an assessment tool. It's more challenging, definitely, but I get a lot out of it. :)
  9. mudphudwannabe

    mudphudwannabe Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 18, 2004
    At our school they recommend only doing random questions, since this is what you'll get on the exam. I think doing random questions is probably a good way to make sure you're still staying fresh in other subjects, even if you're focusing on one subject at a time. I don't see any harm in using questions related to what you're studying at the moment to help you gauge how you're doing, but I think you should still do some random to make sure your brain gets used to switching gears.
  10. lord_jeebus

    lord_jeebus 和魂洋才 Moderator Physician 10+ Year Member

    Jul 12, 2003
    If you're doing QBank plus UW (which people couldn't do in the past), you're doing a lot more questions than most people used to use. I would suggest saving one for random sets only and using the other one for either subject-based or random sets.

    If you're on a budget or otherwise don't want to use multiple online question banks, and you're reviewing by subject (not systems), I suggest getting QBook, which offers a lot of good questions organized by subject, at a very reasonable cost per question.
  11. gunnison

    gunnison MS3 2+ Year Member

    Apr 23, 2007
    I like this idea. Which do you guys think would be better for the random sets, Qbank or UW?
  12. Medikit

    Medikit Plastic Bag Middle Class Physician 10+ Year Member

    May 21, 2004
    This is what I did and I ended up hardly using Qbook simply because I just didn't have the time to do all of those questions, definitely glad I did it that way rather than buying two qbanks and barely using either of them.
  13. RaistlinMajere

    RaistlinMajere 7+ Year Member

    Jul 18, 2004
    I prefer mixed b/c I've covered all the material.

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