New Member
15+ Year Member
Aug 10, 2002
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Hi there,
I am a student at one of the Carribean medical schools. I am in my second semester. However, it has been very challenging for me to figure out a study technique that also fits the USMLE Step 1 criteria. I feel that I haven't learned much here, and I feel that I won't do well when it comes time to take Step 1. Infact, most of the people who take Step 1 from my school flunk it and have to take time off after Basic sciences to study for it. I do not want to fall in the same pattern, but I don't know where to start. Should I do BRS or some other Board questions as I am going through my coursework, should I use board review books as my primary textbooks, I am just confused and nothing seems to work. I would appreciate your help with this, especially, those of you who have been through the same route. Thanks in advance.


10+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Apr 4, 2002
Your problem is very familiar to me. Where I did my Basic Sciences, they emphasized and tested all kind of weird concepts and topics... I was forced to study them for my school's exams, but when the time came for me to study for Step 1, I too had to "re-learn" the knowledge with a Step 1-specific slant. Although I was able to accomplish this successfully and score well, I did indeed have to take a significant amount of time off to do it.

What I suggest you do is this: Starting NOW, select the books that you want to use to study for the exam... whether it be BRS, High-Yield, Kaplan notes, whatever... choose ONE good board review book for each subject now, and study them concurrently with your textbooks while you study for your school's exams. In addition, I know that there are many good practice mcq books out there too for each of the 7 Basic Sciences, and you may want to invest in those too, as IMHO a key component of acing Step 1 is doing lots of practice mcqs.

I realize that studying 3 different books for 2 different types of exams at the same time sounds demanding... it will be. But it is possible... difficult, but doable. Since you took the initiative to post your concerns here and seek advice, you seem to have what it takes to succeed in this venture. Best of luck to you :).
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