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Waiving USMLE Step 2 CS for Class of 2021

dabo52

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The NBME needs to legitimately waive the USMLE Step 2 CS for the Class of 2021 then go back to normal testing once Covid 19 goes away. An online/virtual test is not legit and not a good way in measuring clinical competency. This is just a moneymaker by the NBME. Whose with me in signing a petition to end the USMLE Step 2 CS for the year so the class of 2021 doesn’t have to take it?
 
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studentxx8800

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The last time there was a petition against step 2 CS (I believe it was to completely abandon it), they answered by making more people fail the test. I assure you nobody will care about some medical student petition and step 2 CS will surely be required for graduating class this year as it has in the past. The best thing you all can really do is keep nagging them to make things more accessible and easier to take the test. Telling them to waive it for one year is unrealistic at best...
 
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dabo52

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Waiving it for this year is realistic. How realistic is taking an online test at Prometric supposed to test my clinical skills? This is ridiculous by NBME. We need to start a movement and get Deans on board with us too then the NBME will listen.
 
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studentxx8800

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Waiving it for this year is realistic. How realistic is taking an online test at Prometric supposed to test my clinical skills? This is ridiculous by NBME. We need to start a movement and get Deans on board with us too then the NBME will listen.
Sure, go ahead and try. It won't hurt but I'll bet almost anything that it would be completely a waste of effort. If you think a small group of complete powerless people (i.e, medical students) can affect the higher up people, you more optimistic than I'll ever be
 
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frenchyn

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The last time there was a petition against step 2 CS (I believe it was to completely abandon it), they answered by making more people fail the test. I assure you nobody will care about some medical student petition and step 2 CS will surely be required for graduating class this year as it has in the past. The best thing you all can really do is keep nagging them to make things more accessible and easier to take the test. Telling them to waive it for one year is unrealistic at best...

The sad ugly truth of medical education. I hate medical student “minion” life.
 
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Small Cell Carcinoma

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Best bet is ironically to hope the pandemic gets worse. The worse it gets, the more their hands will be tired. You can see it starting with them delaying ERAS opening to late october and flirting with the idea of some bogus online CS exam. This is their continently plan IF things begin to improve in the near future (a near miraculous scenario). The worse it gets, the more concessions they will have to make for everyone.
 

Small Cell Carcinoma

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Lol do you think you accomplished something by spending $2,000 on a test with a 95% pass rate? get over yourself

Everyone in medicine always feels resentment if they perceive anyone to be getting an “easier” ride due to circumstance. I wonder if this poster would feel this way if he was an MS3 and has zero chance of doing audition rotations this cycle, and has to face the CK exam after only completing one or two core rotations
 
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curbsideconsult

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The students that are looking for a free pass are pathetic. Go take the test like everyone before you has...SMH.
This is the exact wrong attitude to have. It should never be "well, I had to do this bullshyte thing back in my day so you should too." It should always be "let's try to save the next generation from administrative idiocy." A version of CS was initially implemented in the late '90s to test the clinical skills of IMGs and FMGs, which kind of made sense because you want to see how those trained outside the U.S. can work with the population in the U.S. (for now, let's just forget about the fact that there are too many different cultures in the U.S. to test students appropriately). I'm sure the NBME and FSMB saw that it was a huge moneymaker and it was expanded to all medical students in the early 2000s.

CS is superfluous especially in light of the fact the LCME already requires med schools to administer OSCEs. The OSCEs are pretty much standardized because every school is trying to prepare students for CS. The LCME can easily require the standards of CS be adopted by each school and have students evaluated using the exorbitant tuition fees that students already pay.

This year is probably the best year for momentum to completely abolish CS. It's heartless to require students to learn a useless way of examining fake patients in a time like this. So much for med student well-being. I'm all for making sure that every med student comes out of med school as well-prepared as possible, but CS does nothing to enhance education or patient care. I can guarantee you that having passed CS will not make me a better intern in a few weeks.
 
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Small Cell Carcinoma

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I couldn't care less if you have it easier, just pointing out that people who complain are usualy those that never can or won't give it their all.

I passed CS and felt like the day of the test couldn’t have gone any worse for me. I have colleagues who failed who are admittedly far better clinical students than I could ever hope to be. The unpredictability of this test and it’s subjective nature combined with the potentially career ending implications if someone fails is the reason why people are arguing for it to be discontinued.
 
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AnatomyGrey12

The students that are looking for a free pass are pathetic. Go take the test like everyone before you has...SMH.

Looking for a free pass, that's all you are doing, but hey, have at it.

I couldn't care less if you have it easier, just pointing out that people who complain are usualy those that never can or won't give it their all.


Go find me some citations that show any benefits of this exam. I'll wait.

I'd especially love to see you show how CS correlates with future ability.
 
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Small Cell Carcinoma

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Totally understand, but that argument can also be made for other testing in medicine as well. At the end of the day, absolutely no need to cancel the exam unless you have a replacement type that would save students money.

Well do you think it’s fair then for someone’s career to be contingent on them passing some makeshift virtual clinical assessment? Cause that is the plan for students right now and i would be pretty upset if I had to be a guinea pig while still paying $1500 to take the exam.
 

slowthai

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In my gaff
Everyone, I am not trying to offend anyone during this difficult time. I was just stating my opinion and did not see the point of a petition to cancel the exam. If I was a little harsh about calling people slackers and pathetic, please understand that I was just saying that medicine requires a lot of work and effort that I'm sure most of you put in, and trying to get out of exams in my opinion is reserved for the freshman college student, not a med student, regardless of whether you personally think its a useless exam.

You have no basis whatsoever for attributing the desire to get rid of a nonsensical, exploitative exam to a lack of work ethic. None. The vast majority of us are more than willing to do what's necessary to move forward in our careers. The entire step pathway is exploitative, but CS is orders of magnitude more abominable than the other steps/CK.

I do agree that a petition is pointless, because they do nothing 99.9% of the time. What really needs to happen is that some external entity forces the hand of the NBME, but that's obviously not going to happen.
 
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hopefulERdoc251

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Everyone, I am not trying to offend anyone during this difficult time. I was just stating my opinion and did not see the point of a petition to cancel the exam. If I was a little harsh about calling people slackers and pathetic, please understand that I was just saying that medicine requires a lot of work and effort that I'm sure most of you put in, and trying to get out of exams in my opinion is reserved for the freshman college student, not a med student, regardless of whether you personally think its a useless exam. We are talking about taking care of patients, nothing more paramount than that, so please understand where I am coming from.

Tbh, I don't think any medical student is averse to hard work. Seeing as we all have completed the first two years of school (which require hard work), Step 1 (which requires hard work), clinical rotations (which requires hard work), and CK (which requires hard work), I think it's pretty safe to say that we're all about doing hard work if we've made it this far.

I think where the frustration lies is that this exam has no score, and if you fail, you literally have zero idea other than a vague category that you failed so improvement is difficult. Moreover, at least with Step1 and CK, those exams have been vetted with years of data from questions, and to a larger extent are more objective by virtue of being a MC exam. CS on the other hand introduces a significant amount of subjectivity, which for the sakes of a board exam that determines licensure is quite ridiculous.

Additionally, look at how much NBME profited from this exam upon its inception. I feel as though if there was a way to better the quality of this exam while providing useful feedback for individuals who failed, then students would be open to the idea of taking it. But as long as there are only 5 spots in the country that you can take this exam, and that there's no true grading or feedback rubric that you can analyze if you failed, and there's no flexibility on behalf of NBME, then it's hard to not think that this exam is a cash grab.
 
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bananafish94

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just pointing out that people who complain are usualy those that never can or won't give it their all.
I studied extensively for it and passed it on my first attempt. Definitely "gave it my all" just like everything else in medical school. Still think it's absolutely useless and easily my biggest waste of money ever. It's universally recognized as a complete scam. Why should future students have to go through something that stupid and pointless just because I did it?
 
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frenchyn

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Hmm if what I was told is correct: CS will be administered at prometric through telemedicine format...they can’t even keep up with their normal capacity, how does USMLE think they can proctor CS as well? ‍♀️
 

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<L>

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The NBME needs to legitimately waive the USMLE Step 2 CS for the Class of 2021 then go back to normal testing once Covid 19 goes away. An online/virtual test is not legit and not a good way in measuring clinical competency. This is just a moneymaker by the NBME. Whose with me in signing a petition to end the USMLE Step 2 CS for the year so the class of 2021 doesn’t have to take it?

The test had questionable legitimacy before, not sure how it's any less legitimate during a pandemic, tbh.
 
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efle

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One year waived seems sensible when, during that year, there's no way to do a real physical exam or have a real, normal conversation with mock patients.

I mean can you imagine your state of mind if you take this telehealth abomination and fail? Your career now in jeopardy because someone didn't feel like you beamed enough empathy through the Zoom call, or you forgot to ask about some steps in a physical exam that are normally muscle memory?

There's just no way to justify this. Though, I'm sure it'll still happen, because a significant proportion of FMG/IMG applicants get screened out by CS every year and they can't easily exempt us without exempting those thousands of people from taking it, too.
 
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Eye-eye

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Hmm if what I was told is correct: CS will be administered at prometric through telemedicine format...they can’t even keep up with their normal capacity, how does USMLE think they can proctor CS as well? ‍♀
My understanding from my med school and some other posters on SDN is that prometric does not have video conferencing capability and thus it would be up to med schools to provide a testing facility.
 

Eye-eye

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We should just go on strike or get together and sue the NBME for ripping us off! If we sue the NBME, maybe they will listen and get rid of the test!
As for a strike... (a) they already don't want us on the wards, (b) they already have our money, and probably have no problem failing us if we refuse to complete a requirement.
As for suing... if you have the money for legal fees or can find a good firm that'll work on contingency, I'm sure you'd have the support of most med students. You'd probably also need one or more cases of failing the new exam format to sue over ruining students' career prospects over a completely unvalidated exam format. You'd also need a hell of a legal team considering the amount of $$$ NBME has and how much they would want to protect this particular cash cow.
 
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efle

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I agree w you. It seems very strange considering prometric is back up themselves w step 1 and 2...without CS.
Prometric may have designed their testing rooms to be fully offline as a security measure. Easy to load up your desired exam form for Step 1 or 2 off a storage device, but impossible to suddenly begin video chatting on your machines.
 

frenchyn

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Prometric may have designed their testing rooms to be fully offline as a security measure. Easy to load up your desired exam form for Step 1 or 2 off a storage device, but impossible to suddenly begin video chatting on your machines.
Yes and the room need to be private too...besides couple offices and the big glass room...they don’t have that many private rooms
 
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