docmemi

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since i teach an mcat class i know that the mcat is heavily based on test taking skills. but looking at some usmle questions and explainations, i get the impression that the usmle is entirely based on content. i couldnt apply any of the strategies that i teach.

thoughts??
 

jlee9531

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well the test is based on the first 2 years of your medical education...i dont know if there are any tricks that can substitute for not studying too much.

why do you think medical students fear the boards? its no cakewalk ;)
 

chintu

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I agree. I have seen students do quite poorly on mcat (<27) and yet score high 90's on the boards. There is not a whole lot of correlation; and as said previously, there is no substitute for studying hard and knowing your stuff for the boards.
 

G0S2

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We will take the USMLE part 1 exam immediately after being immersed in two years of tested material. I took the MCAT 7 years after college. I did OK, however, I think I would have done better if I ate, slept, and drank MCAT for two years leading up to the exam.
 

Bones2008

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Originally posted by chintu
I have seen students do quite poorly on mcat (<27) and yet score high 90's on the boards.
Ummm....so I guess you don't mean 90 points, since about 180 is the passing score cutoff every year. But, the NBME/USMLE stopped reporting percentiles a while back, I think. Just wondering where you're coming from with this claim.
 

exmike

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Originally posted by Bones2008
Ummm....so I guess you don't mean 90 points, since about 180 is the passing score cutoff every year. But, the NBME/USMLE stopped reporting percentiles a while back, I think. Just wondering where you're coming from with this claim.
they still report a 2 digit numerical score which doesnt correspond with a percentile.
 

nibrocli

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Originally posted by chintu
I have seen students do quite poorly on mcat (<27) and yet score high 90's on the boards. There is not a whole lot of correlation;
several adcom members have told me that there is a direct correlation between mcat & step 1 scores. in fact, one interviewer even told me that he could look at my mcat and tell me exactly what i'm going to get on step 1.

i don't doubt your anecdote though, as i'm sure there are aberrations.

when i first heard this i did some searching on the internet for data, but i never found anything detailed (ie, x mcat = y step 1). here are a few studies i did find though:

http://www.aamc.org/data/aib/camcam/vol4_no4.htm

http://www.statlit.org/PDF/2004Wainer_ThreeParadoxes.pdf

http://www.aamc.org/data/aib/cime/vol3no2.pdf
 

Bones2008

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Originally posted by exmike
they still report a 2 digit numerical score which doesnt correspond with a percentile.
Then what does it correspond to, if this person knows people who score in the upper nineties? Surely not percent. I can't believe anybody scores close to 100% on the Step 1, let alone that one person knows multiple people that have accomplished this (all of whom scored <27 on their MCATs). Just over 50% (175) is passing, and 75% (260) is good enough to land you in any residency you could ever want.
 
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docmemi

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maybe they correlate, but you can improve...students can always study more and learn the test taking skills necessary and totally do great on step 1. thoughts?
 

fullefect1

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wow, 75% = 260? Has anyone ever recieved a 270 or 280?
 

Bones2008

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I'm sure there are more than a handful that have done it. They're few and far between, though, I imagine.
 
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docmemi

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back to my original post. i was argueing that the mcat was heavily based on test taking skills. something i know firsthand as an mcat teacher and something that ive heard from deans of admission. looking at the usmle, i claimed that it was mainly a content based test.

after talking to a test taking master (literally, im serious), he tells me that the usmle of course needs knowledge of the content, but is also a test of your test taking skills. so mcat and usmle do correlate. then he goes on to say, however, you can learn those skills, study better, and do well on the usmle (even if you did bad on ur mcat).

maybe that was already obvious to lots of people, but i still think its an important point. thoughts?