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Timekeeping Without Watches

Discussion in 'Step I' started by sentrosi, Jun 17, 2008.

  1. sentrosi

    sentrosi INTARWEB USER
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    Okay, I was reading the 2008 USMLE Bulletin and apparently you cannot have watches with you while taking the test.

    http://www.usmle.org/General_Information/bulletin/2008/testing.html

    I had previously been under the impression that you could use an analog watch but not a digital watch. So I need advice on how to manage your time without a watch. Like how do you make sure you don't accidentally use more break time than you expect if you don't have anything to reference time with?


    Also, from what I understand, you keep everything you bring outside in a locker. How much fits in there? I'm planning on bringing some snacks, lunch, and water. Possibly some ibuprofen, gum, and my cell phone and wallet. I don't imagine it will be a problem, but I don't want to have too much and then have to deal with that.
     
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  3. WayChanger

    WayChanger Senior Member
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    The USMLE program keeps track of time for you. At all times, while you are actively working on the exam at the monitor, there is a countdown timer that tells you A) How much time is left for that block of the exam, and B) How much time is left for the entire day, i.e., 8 hours left at the beginning of the day, 4 hours left in the middle, etc.

    When you finish a block, IIRC, it will tell you how many minutes of break you have remaining. When you take a break, you have to leave the testing room. They make you sign in and out when you go in and out of the room, and there's a big clock right there for your convenience. Once you are out of the testing room and on an official break, you can pretty much do what you please, so you can consult watches and clocks to your heart's desire. Don't worry, you'll be fine without a watch. =]
     
  4. WayChanger

    WayChanger Senior Member
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    Oops, also, most lockers are a reasonably good size. I used one of the "small lockers" at my testing center and it was easily enough room for a lunch container, a messenger bag, First Aid, my cell phone, wallet, etc. with room to spare. At my center, they also had "large" lockers that easily would have fit 2 backpacks.
     
  5. sentrosi

    sentrosi INTARWEB USER
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    Thanks.

    I wasn't too worried about keeping track of time while taking the test since there's a countdown on that. It was for during the break times.
     
  6. peter90036

    peter90036 not out fishing
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    yeah dont worry, if you're on break its not much to relax, unless you got someone to talk to... but then they're also stressed... so you'll go back in time :) i tried to keep the 10-15minute break but went back before that :p . The 'big' lockers fit a regular sized backpack, there's also smaller lockers (at least where i went)
     
  7. 45408

    45408 aw buddy
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    Locker was plenty big. The staff at the center I went to actually did allow analog watches - I didn't have one, but I saw someone else getting theirs okayed by the staff.
     
  8. TerpMD

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    If you want to see the timer thing before your exam it's in the download/tutorial software from the site. It's actually quite the comprehensive timer!
     

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