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what is shelf exam?

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by Dr34566, Aug 28, 2007.

  1. Dr34566

    Dr34566 Banned Banned

    Mar 9, 2007
    in not studying in the US, but i do have a lot of US books. On many of them i see: ideal for preparing for the shelf exam.

    I tried to look on the internet what exactly a shelf exam is , but couldnt find.

    Can someone answer this simple question for me?
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  3. MSKalltheway

    MSKalltheway I got the magic stick 7+ Year Member

    Jan 16, 2007
    Shelf exams are a set of exams you take after certain required 3rd year rotations. You take this shelf exam after your Medicine, Surgery, OB/Gyn, and Peds(?) rotations. I get the sense from 3rd years that they are important depending on who you talk to. These exams factor in to make up part of your grade in the rotation, so if you want to gun and get honors in the rotation, you better study hard. If you simply want to pass, apparently being awake for rounds and studying here and there will do just fine.

    I forgot to mention that the Shelf Exams are standardized nationally for whoever takes them at that time. Take my word with a grain of salt at this moment; everything I told you is hearsay and all my knowledge about them is based on what I have heard at this point. I'm not yet a third year, so if others chime in and agree (or not), that will give you a better idea.
    HaitianDrSoph likes this.
  4. BillyWitchDoctr

    BillyWitchDoctr 2+ Year Member

    Aug 20, 2007
    They're not quite as easy as you describe. We took all of ours in a week at the end of 3rd year. This may have been more difficult but it allowed many people studied for the exams and then took another study week and got Step 2 out of the way. We had shelf exams for Peds, Medicine, Ob/Gyn, Surgery, Fam Med, & Psych.
  5. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    May 30, 2001
    Gone Walkabout!
    A "shelf" exam is an exam that some medical schools purchase from the NBME that test materials presented in the third-year clerkships. They are literally pulled from a box on the "shelf" and thus the name "shelf" exams. They are used by participating medical schools to compare their students to others nationwide as these exams are not scored by the school but by the NBME.

    Many schools that use "shelf" exams will use that score in addition to clinical evaluation scores and possibly and "in-house exam" to calculate the final clerkship grade for a student.
  6. MSKalltheway

    MSKalltheway I got the magic stick 7+ Year Member

    Jan 16, 2007
    I'm sure they're not a cake walk at all and I dont mean to downplay them as I, of course, have no personal experience with them yet. The 4th year I talked to about them thought they were stressful and long, but he felt in retrospect they weren't so bad. That's only his opinion though...I'm sure many feel differently about them though.
  7. FenderHM

    FenderHM Where there's a will... 7+ Year Member

    Feb 19, 2006
    we use shelf-exams for courses M1-M3 to prepare for USMLE exams
  8. shivasHeroLike

    shivasHeroLike 7+ Year Member

    Oct 2, 2006
    we use shelf exams as a final in basic science courses.
  9. MDpride

    MDpride 5+ Year Member

    May 28, 2007
    My college has 3rd year end-of-rotation exam via EXAM MASTER.

    I am not sure, if questions are written by college prof and then posted or written by exam master.

    Our second year exams are written by college prof. and then posted on EXAMMASTER for us to take test.

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