arjusmc

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I’m an OMS 1 at a school with a systems based curriculum. Systems starts in January and I get a lot of practice questions, especially ones that have rationale for both correct and incorrect answers. I’ve been recommended both Kaplan and usmle Rx. Are there any others out there worth looking into? Excluding Uworld, I’m saving those for dedicated. Any preference between kaplan and usmle Rx? I know a lot of these go on sale over Black Friday and I was hoping to save by purchasing them then.
 
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I’ll 2nd Rx, I like that you can choose the difficulty level and the subsection of First Aid you want questions from, so I’m less likely to get questions about pathology we won’t learn until next year (we do systems twice: normal 1st year, pathology and clinical management 2nd year).
 
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giguerex35

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i have also noticed that Rx is a bit easier. My personal thoughts UW >> AMBOSS >>> Kaplan > Rx. I personally have AMBOSS and kaplan and have looked at some friends Rx accounts. I personally did not get Rx becasue it seemed much easier and if i remember correctly it is made by the same people who wrote FA so it is basically FA in question form which I did not want. Kaplan is pretty thorough for testing anatomy and physiology, AMBOSS is good for all around questions.
 
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arjusmc

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i have also noticed that Rx is a bit easier. My personal thoughts UW >> AMBOSS >>> Kaplan > Rx. I personally have AMBOSS and kaplan and have looked at some friends Rx accounts. I personally did not get Rx becasue it seemed much easier and if i remember correctly it is made by the same people who wrote FA so it is basically FA in question form which I did not want. Kaplan is pretty thorough for testing anatomy and physiology, AMBOSS is good for all around questions.
I forgot about amboss. I’ll have to take a look at them. I may just sign up for the free trial of all of them over thanksgiving break and go from there.
 

Matthew9Thirtyfive

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I forgot about amboss. I’ll have to take a look at them. I may just sign up for the free trial of all of them over thanksgiving break and go from there.

My experience with AMBOSS has been mixed. A lot of their questions are unnecessarily difficult. I've gotten a number of questions where they will make it seem like the person has X, but then throw in one 3 word phrase that changes it, and they're basically just testing to see if you picked up on that little tidbit. I also find it a lot less user friendly than Rx.

But you should try them all. The issue is that unless you're using it to go through stuff you're actually learning, it might be hard to determine which one works best for you.
 
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slowthai

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My experience with AMBOSS has been mixed. A lot of their questions are unnecessarily difficult. I've gotten a number of questions where they will make it seem like the person has X, but then throw in one 3 word phrase that changes it, and they're basically just testing to see if you picked up on that little tidbit. I also find it a lot less user friendly than Rx.

But you should try them all. The issue is that unless you're using it to go through stuff you're actually learning, it might be hard to determine which one works best for you.

Lol this just happened to me the other day. First I thought it was MS, then I thought it was lyme disease, then back to MS, then back to lyme. And I got it wrong, lol. Just unnecessarily tricky sometimes.
 
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HtownNittanyLion

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I bought AMBOSS and my school provides Lecturio and Board Vitals. Board Vitals and AMBOSS are good but AMBOSS is quite tough. Their explanations and articles are quite good and straightforward.
Lecturio is ass. Lol
 
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giguerex35

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My experience with AMBOSS has been mixed. A lot of their questions are unnecessarily difficult. I've gotten a number of questions where they will make it seem like the person has X, but then throw in one 3 word phrase that changes it, and they're basically just testing to see if you picked up on that little tidbit. I also find it a lot less user friendly than Rx.

But you should try them all. The issue is that unless you're using it to go through stuff you're actually learning, it might be hard to determine which one works best for you.
just me but I would rather have tough and tricky than too simple and you can always just screen out the 5 hammer questiosn which is what most of the very tricky questions are
 
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Matthew9Thirtyfive

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just me but I would rather have tough and tricky than too simple and you can always just screen out the 5 hammer questiosn which is what most of the very tricky questions are

I don’t think rx is too simple or easy. Maybe I’m just not a genius like some people. I also don’t think amboss is very representative of NBME. I find rx to be a much better prep for nbme exams, which we take at my school.
 
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slowthai

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I don’t think rx is too simple or easy. Maybe I’m just not a genius like some people. I also don’t think amboss is very representative of NBME. I find rx to be a much better prep for nbme exams, which we take at my school.

I agree on both points. Maybe Rx used to be a bunch of easy first order qs, but it's not that way anymore. From what I understand, step 1 doesn't try to trick you like Amboss does. That aside, I like Amboss for getting comfortable with approaching very difficult questions.
 
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Matthew9Thirtyfive

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I agree on both points. Maybe Rx used to be a bunch of easy first order qs, but it's not that way anymore. From what I understand, step 1 doesn't try to trick you like Amboss does. That aside, I like Amboss for getting comfortable with approaching very difficult questions.

Exactly. I've taken like 11 NBME exams, and not a single question was a trick-**** question like so many AMBOSS questions are.
 
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giguerex35

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Exactly. I've taken like 11 NBME exams, and not a single question was a trick-**** question like so many AMBOSS questions are.
fair enough, i have not taken any of the NBMEs yet, plan to do it over christmas break after some review first, I hope youre right because that would make things much easier
 
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slowthai

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fair enough, i have not taken any of the NBMEs yet, plan to do it over christmas break after some review first, I hope youre right because that would make things much easier

He's talking about school administered NBMEs. But people always say that the NBME doesn't try to trick you on step. Like they'll give you vague questions/answers, and stuff you've never heard of, but they won't try to trick you.
 
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Matthew9Thirtyfive

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fair enough, i have not taken any of the NBMEs yet, plan to do it over christmas break after some review first, I hope youre right because that would make things much easier

Yeah I meant the nbme school exams, since op was talking about systems.
 
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FindersFee5

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My experience with AMBOSS has been mixed. A lot of their questions are unnecessarily difficult. I've gotten a number of questions where they will make it seem like the person has X, but then throw in one 3 word phrase that changes it, and they're basically just testing to see if you picked up on that little tidbit. I also find it a lot less user friendly than Rx.

But you should try them all. The issue is that unless you're using it to go through stuff you're actually learning, it might be hard to determine which one works best for you.

This is a good note, and it's why I don't recommend Amboss as a first qbank and usually not even as a second. It can teach you lessons that are harmful on NBMEs and the steps. In general, they're not trying to trick you, and if you try reading too much into every tiny detail you'll waste time making easy questions unnecessarily difficult and get questions wrong second guessing. Especially with boards style questions trending towards longer and longer stems, you need to feel confident in picking an answer and moving on without always needing to read every single word.

As an example, I just took step 2 yesterday, and the median length on the question stems was probably in the range of 80 - 120 words, with some probably close to 300 words. I'm a fast reader, but if you made me read 120 words super carefully AND figure out the answer in 90 seconds, and then do that 40 times straight, and then do THAT another 7 times... there's no way I'd be able to keep it up.
 
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Matthew9Thirtyfive

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This is a good note, and it's why I don't recommend Amboss as a first qbank and usually not even as a second. It can teach you lessons that are harmful on NBMEs and the steps. In general, they're not trying to trick you, and if you try reading too much into every tiny detail you'll waste time making easy questions unnecessarily difficult and get questions wrong second guessing yourself. Especially with boards style questions trending towards longer and longer stems, you need to feel confident in picking an answer and moving on without always needing to read every single word.

As an example, I just took step 2 yesterday, and the median length on the question stems was probably in the range of 80 - 120 words, with some probably close to 300 words. I'm a fast reader, but if you made me read 120 words super carefully AND figure out the answer in 90 seconds, and then do that 40 times straight, and then do THAT another 7 times... there's no way I'd be able to keep it up.

Exactly. IMO it’s poor question writing if the only way you can make a question difficult is to see how carefully the person can read and whether they pick up on the 1-2 words you throw in there among 50 red herrings.
 
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