I am currently a fourth year DO student, getting ready to apply for residency, and I need some advice. I would like to know how important USMLE Step II scores are for granting residency interviews to DO students. I am going into OB/GYN and would like to stay on the west coast. My Step I score is 225 and I am in the top 10% of my class. I have an opportunity to do OB/GYN research at an institution that is high on my residency list during my June vacation. If I decide to take the USMLE, I can't do research because I will need that month to study for the test. I have called all of the institutions that I am interested in for residency to ask them about the importance of Step II, but I always talk to the secretary and they all tell me that numbers don't matter. I don't believe this. My major concern is that I will score lower than a 225 on Step II and this will look bad on my residency applications. I guess what I am asking is will a Step II score make me a more competitive DO student for interview invitations, or is research more important? Thanks in advance for your thoughts.