Rabbit Hole

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Dec 29, 2009
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Good news, everybody, we're extending arts and crafts time by four hours today!

Step 1 - Change in number of items/Delay in score reporting


Starting on or around May 15, 2010, a transition period will begin in which the number of items in current forms of the Step 1 examination will change from 336 items to 322 items. Although the transition will occur quickly at many test centers, there may be some locations where the changes take slightly longer to complete. The overall transition period will likely last approximately 6 weeks. Posted March 23, 2010

Please note that:

  • Scores on new and old forms will be comparable; the decrease in the number of items per form will be accounted for in scoring the examination results.
  • The length of the examination day will remain unchanged.
Most score reporting of Step 1 results occurs within four weeks of testing. However, because of the change in timing described above, as well as routine modifications to the test item pool, there will be a delay in score reporting for most Step 1 examinations administered in late May and June. The target date for reporting Step 1 scores for most examinees testing from May 15 through late June will be Wednesday, July 14, 2010.
 

kryptik

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we get a few more seconds per questions, am all for that
 
Mar 12, 2010
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so does that if someone takes their exam on the last week of may instead of waiting 3 weeks for their score report they will have to wait 6 weeks!!
is less questions better? the other questions will have more weight each...no?
 

PistolPete

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Jul 16, 2006
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Crap. This kinda sucks... there will be a much longer waiting period than the standard 3 weeks, and there will be more time per question, which means the curve will probably not be as generous, so you will have to miss less questions to get your target score.

Ugh.
 

Rabbit Hole

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Dec 29, 2009
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so does that if someone takes their exam on the last week of may instead of waiting 3 weeks for their score report they will have to wait 6 weeks!!
is less questions better? the other questions will have more weight each...no?
Yea, it seems like the score delay happens every year. If you get the new version of the exam (322Q).. then you have to wait until July 14th.

The less questions there are the less mistakes you can make. I think they're probably adding more media-type questions and since they probably take a little longer to do they are compensating by reducing the number of questions. That's just my opinion.
 

k87

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is there a way to find out which centers will have this change quickly and which wont?
 

illixir

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Wow, I'm really glad I'm taking it may 12... Hopefully on or around won't extend to that.

I'm surprised they're making a change to make the test what it seems would be easier, I feel like I'm seeing and hearing of more and more people get higher scores these days.
 
Feb 8, 2010
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But wont reducing the number of question mean that u have to make less mistakes, to get the score u want

and also that since they r less questions they might be harder esp if they add like media questions?

dont yall think so?
 

Rabbit Hole

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Additionally, I think the Step 1 has been shifting towards more clinical type questions which usually means longer stems --> longer time to read and figure out answer. The passing score has been increasing and the number of total questions decreasing.. I don't think the exam is getting any easier. The exam used to be 350 questions just a few short years ago.. and now it's 322Q.

Don't forget about this: Comprehensive Review of USMLE
Read the update from December 2009.
 

Rabbit Hole

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Dec 29, 2009
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is there a way to find out which centers will have this change quickly and which wont?
I really don't think so, there's no way to know. Just be prepared to take the new version if your test date is beyond May 15.
 

vicinihil

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It would make sense if they are adding more "media" related questions like the stethescope on on the free 150 where it's almost like you're actually examining the patient. I'm terrible at those and I'm taking it on April 16th so I hope I avoid the craziness!!!