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USMLE Step III, 3rd attempt suggestions.

D

deleted699098

Taking Step III for the 3rd time end of September.

Working through Online MedEd lectures, topic by topic. Finishing up UWorld Step 2 CK QBank and Kaplan Step 3 QBank. Working through CCSCases.com.
Plan on re-re-doing UWorld Step 3 QBank and CCS.

Any other suggestions/resources?
I can't fail again.
 

jspar1

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Taking Step III for the 3rd time end of September.

Working through Online MedEd lectures, topic by topic. Finishing up UWorld Step 2 CK QBank and Kaplan Step 3 QBank. Working through CCSCases.com.
Plan on re-re-doing UWorld Step 3 QBank and CCS.

Any other suggestions/resources?
I can't fail again.

Hey man,
On all your attempts, where did you fall short? Was it the multiple choice portion or CCS?
 
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jspar1

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1) Do not pay anyone for expensive tutoring sessions

2) you’re focusing too much on multiple choice material. Master ccs. Do uworld ccs do ccscases.com. Take uwsa 1 and 2. If you’ve truly mastered Ccs cases, add 20 points to that uwsa 1 and Uwsa 2 score. it’s probably a passing score in the 200’s

3) go take your exam.
 
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D

deleted699098

1) Do not pay anyone for expensive tutoring sessions

2) you’re focusing too much on multiple choice material. Master ccs. Do uworld ccs do ccscases.com. Take uwsa 1 and 2. If you’ve truly mastered Ccs cases, add 20 points to that uwsa 1 and Uwsa 2 score. it’s probably a passing score in the 200’s

3) go take your exam.
Thank you. Concise and to the point.
 
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steveme

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@FryyM ; I am sorry, I am sure this could be traumatic. It appears like CCS is your major problem. Why do not you analyze and try to figure out which of the CCS competency areas you are going wrong? Get ********** videos and master all the strategies and case protocols. this will help you understand where you were going wrong in the CCS. Get a study partner and practice CCS on the actual exam software. I am sure you have previously used third-party ccs software like the sites you mentioned above. One problem we have with those is how much they misguide the user with "simulated time" use and how they are different from the actual flow of the original software. You can download the original software from usmle.org.

A few years ago, Archer Review used to do a free analysis of your scoring areas and they used to offer suggestions to improve. Send your scores to them and see if they still offer that service. When it comes to CCS, the Archer approach has been the standard for many years. Read this Why CCS is crucial for passing Step 3?

Also, please feel free to go over the tips I posted in CCS thread

Wish you all the best!
 

BazingaHero

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Thank you. Concise and to the point.
Taking Step III for the 3rd time end of September.

Working through Online MedEd lectures, topic by topic. Finishing up UWorld Step 2 CK QBank and Kaplan Step 3 QBank. Working through CCSCases.com.
Plan on re-re-doing UWorld Step 3 QBank and CCS.

Any other suggestions/resources?
I can't fail again.

Hey man,

I was trying to send you a PM but it did not let me. Send me a message.
 

jspar1

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I respectfully disagree. Archer videos I’m sure are fine but the videos are too long and OP will waste valuable time. I say this because I’ve been there. I think it can add value maybe towards the end of ones prep but even then I wouldn’t waste time.

The best way to master ccs is to do the cases, you’ll pick up pattern and tricks here and there. Remember from previous usmles, blasting through as many questions and Anki cards is superior to watching hours of videos of someone lecturing you. Master the material and then cram away.

Success on CCS requires blasting through as many cases as you can multiple times. Hence why both uworld ccs cases and ccscases.com. Both are beneficial in their own way and have their advantages and disadvantages. I would say start off with ccscases.com but then end with uworld. Sometimes they can glitch but it won’t matter in the grand scheme of things.

also the simulated time can be changed on ccscases.com but not uworldccs. At the end of the day, I don’t think it’s matters and people exaggerate how important it is to simulate time. As someone once said in a forum, ccs is all about memorizing the work up and then regurgitating it on the software. That’s literally it.
It got to the point where I was doing practice ccs cases and didn’t even need to refer to the explanation, just what workup I missed and I would keep repeating the case until I mastered it.

Exam time came, the 2 sec lag occurred with each order I placed. This was just a little different from how I had prepared. Didn’t matter. My brain adjusted and I was used to it. I felt very comfortable because I had repeated the ccscases multiple times and was prepared for any trap or scenario they threw on me. I did fine. You will too.
 

BazingaHero

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I respectfully disagree. Archer videos I’m sure are fine but the videos are too long and OP will waste valuable time. I say this because I’ve been there. I think it can add value maybe towards the end of ones prep but even then I wouldn’t waste time.

The best way to master ccs is to do the cases, you’ll pick up pattern and tricks here and there. Remember from previous usmles, blasting through as many questions and Anki cards is superior to watching hours of videos of someone lecturing you. Master the material and then cram away.

Success on CCS requires blasting through as many cases as you can multiple times. Hence why both uworld ccs cases and ccscases.com. Both are beneficial in their own way and have their advantages and disadvantages. I would say start off with ccscases.com but then end with uworld. Sometimes they can glitch but it won’t matter in the grand scheme of things.

also the simulated time can be changed on ccscases.com but not uworldccs. At the end of the day, I don’t think it’s matters and people exaggerate how important it is to simulate time. As someone once said in a forum, ccs is all about memorizing the work up and then regurgitating it on the software. That’s literally it.
It got to the point where I was doing practice ccs cases and didn’t even need to refer to the explanation, just what workup I missed and I would keep repeating the case until I mastered it.

Exam time came, the 2 sec lag occurred with each order I placed. This was just a little different from how I had prepared. Didn’t matter. My brain adjusted and I was used to it. I felt very comfortable because I had repeated the ccscases multiple times and was prepared for any trap or scenario they threw on me. I did fine. You will too.
I 2nd everything Jspar1 said. Archer is good and has a role in your CCS prep but doing the actual cases is the key. Another thing is you need to memorize order list for a particular chief complaint. If case says, "palpitations," then who cares if its a 15 year old or a 55 year old, you must order everything that you have memorized such as iv access, pulse ox, oxy, CBC, CMP ,ESR, UA, TSH, EKG, TROPONIN, URINE TOX, CHEST XRAY, ECHO ,MAG, PHOS etc.

I say this because I have failed it and will be retaking. On the day of the test, I forgot to order alot of things because of 1) nerves 2)I did not make a conscious effort to memorize the order set. I did UW and ccscases and felt, if I just "practice" the cases then I will remember to order the appropriate workup. Just saying "oh I will remember to order the basic stuff. I know palpitations need certain workup so I pssshhh I got this" did not work for me. In hindsight, my order set for same chief complaints was totally different for a young patient versus the old and only 3 cases ended quickly. Every other case dragged out and I remembered myself sitting there and trying to run through different things to order and I forgot alot of things. So just memorizing it and like a robot ordering everything is the way to go, at least for me.

As far as Archer goes, I used archer and watched almost all of those video's. I watched the main strategy video like 5 times. I do think it is helpful but memorizing the order set is way more important than anything else. Also, previously I ordered hcg and advance the clock to get the results before adding anything else and I am not doing that this time around. Now, I just add hcg, and everything else on the initial screen (after PE) and I have scored 90%+ on every ccscases.com Obviously, don't order CT without knowing the result of hcg.

So I speak from personal experience and please for the love of god, ccs is very important. However, it is only 25 - 30% and even if you kill ccs, ignoring other 70% of the test isn't ideal. So yes, CCS is very important but so is other 70% of the test. Archer preaches "CCS and only CCS is the way to go", it's absolutely correct but ccs should not be the priority. And I am speaking from my experience so sitting in front of the computer, and "thinking" through the orders is not the way to go. Be a robot and just order same workup for palpitation regardless of patient is a 21 year old or 121 year old.

Archer is really good but there is nothing better than your personal experience from previous sittings.
 
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BazingaHero

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Sorry, just to add one more thing.


There is no substitute for Anki. I feel so sad that I did not use Anki before. Very disappointed. I know crush ccs has tables of common workup for most of the chief complaints so you can copy and paste that into Anki and just memorize it. I am sure if you do that exercise, and keep working on UW and ccscases, it will become 2nd nature to just order everything at once and it will make it so much easier to do this. At least for me, it is the way to go. What's better than your personal experience.

I really hope, it helps man. I know the feeling of having to retake. I can share my Anki stuff or anything else that you might need.
 
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steveme

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I agree with Bazingahero. It is also extremely important to understand the strategy. Strategy varies widely on exam software with 10 min and 20 min cases and its not one shoe fit all approach how this third party software puts forward. Definitely do not do screening etc in ED cases in 10 mins, you just can not meet the time scenario and you just can not finish what is required in that little time if you focus on unnecessary steps. It is very important to practice and get speed on official exam software which you can download from USMLE.ORG, not just 3rd party software. When you practice on USMLE.ORG official software you yourself will understand how responsive it is.
Archer demonstrates it all the way in their videos and the Archer strategy is perfect even in real life management of cases. How to prescribe medications, how to stop clock, and not go two days later in time before you address the problem...are all crucial stuff.

Even this one-hour Archer video will probably help you understand how responsive the official software is and some key strategies :
 
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