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Thread: Preparation

  1. #1
    Unrg Guest

    Preparation

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    Hi everyone,
    I was in the process of looking for study material for Step 1. However, there just seems to be too much out there and Im so confused. I wanted to know what would be the best way to study for this test. I will get the First Aid book. I was looking into getting all the BRS books and High yield books for each subject, would that be overkill or would one brand be just fine? What subjects should I go with, just the main 7 becuase they other ones too that I wasnt sure if I should buy. Should I also use the Kaplan review books? I am just looking for the best review combinations and what others felt helped them in passing Step 1.
    Thank you for your help

  2. #2
    This Ol'gal Guest

    My Suggestion

    I'd suggest you buy the kaplan books from someone who has just written the exam. Kaplan, FA, and Q bank from Kaplan 2 to 3 months of the exam is the way to go.
    Goljan Audio Lectures and his 100 paged notes are very helpful. It helps you connect everything you read in all the subjects.
    Goljan is very good for pathology, you should aslo look through the Kaplan for Patholgy. What I do is when I am tired of reading, I start listening to Goljan.
    try and listen to it at least twice or even more before the exams.
    What you hear, sometimes sticks even better than what you read.
    Repitition is the key. Read your Kaplan notes at least twice. Looks cumbersome, but trust me, after the first read, the second time will be a breeze.
    Try not to read too many books. Some BRS is good, but its better for someone that has BRS experience to talk about it.
    Try also to coordinate what you are reading.
    For example, when reading, Pharmacolgy- Antimicrobials, go to Microbiology and study the Microorganisms you are treating...
    Always do questions. You can read all you want, but if you don't do the questions, you won't pick up the concepts.
    It looks like it is not easy. It is very very doable. Enjoy the reading, don't read like it is punishment.
    Try to read something each day. If you leave your books for 1 day, it leaves you for 10 days. You'll just start from the beginning. Just speaking from experience. Do all your jottings in your FA.
    Close to your exams, just read your FA.
    Happy reading, hope this helps.
    All the best!

  3. #3
    md90's Avatar
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    my preparation...

    I will let you know how I prepare.. but it is up to you to choose your best method.. I'm a visual learner, and I must see and write, see and write... to get the information into my head...

    1. I chose two review books, First Aid and Step-Up; these are the main two books that I used for classes, placing my notes in there...
    2. I started with kaplan in school, and have continued to use them; I place the notes into the First Aid and review..
    3. I made a schedule starting from January 3 to the exam date (May); it tells me when I study, take the assessment exams (qbank, NBME, USMLE practice exam), and the actual exam; my goal is to go through the material three times before taking the assessment exams (currently I'm on my second run);
    4. I plan the day according to how the exam day will be--0800am to 0500pm; there are two problems for me.. I'm not a morning person and I have test anxiety.. therefore after talking with people on various forums including valuemd, and experimenting.. I do the following:
    --I sleep early (0830/0900pm) this does not always happen..; I'm still very tired in the morning... but the next strategy works...
    --I take sips of coke and/or various chocolates for energy
    --I take breaks every hour for 5-10minutes (going to the bathroom, walking around, and/or playing computer games)
    --I will take a 45 minute lunch to rest and relax
    --I don't study on Sundays.. it's "me" time
    5. I exercise every day.. but did not want to miss study time.. therefore I listen to Goljan CD while I exercise and before I go to sleep or while I'm sleeping
    6. I stick to the review books and Kaplan; If there is something that I don't understand, then I will look it up on the internet, notes, or textbooks
    7. I have learnt to be disciplined and motivated.. and this is hard... but I will come on valuemd and/or prep4usmle to read successes of those that passed step 1, and/or talk to friends who have passed; I also took one week off to shadow an internist..
    8. I do study at home and at the library from 0800am to 0500pm; at night, I review and do questions from Tommy K, at least 25-50 per night.

    I have learnt to be flexible since I have made this schedule; I also plan on taking the practice exam at the testing center in May to help with the logistics of exam taking;

    The main GOAL is to review and do questions, understanding the concept and NOT memorizing..

    Hope that this helps, and wish you the best!!!

  4. #4
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    Step 1 Prep

    I used BRS and First Aid. But, I also took the Falcon program which is intense.

    Some people like Kaplan, I do not. Don't rely on Kaplan questions, they are nothing like the real USMLE questions. The books are sorta okay for studying, but if you practice only Kaplan questions, I'm afraid you'll be unprepared.

    Download the tutorial from the USMLE website. They have 3 blocks of retired questions you can practice which are going to be like the real thing.
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    About to graduate from SMU

  5. #5
    Miko is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    Yea there are soo many review books for all the system based subjects...i guess just pick up first aid and in section 3 (in the back of the book) read their review's on top choice usmle books.
    Also check out http://www.gotmedbooks.com/findbooks...ion=list&num=1
    I think looking at those two you can pretty much see which are top rated books.
    For everyone else, where the HECK do you find the damn goljan audio files?! *Every* link i click does not get me to the audio files. Any hints where to look?

  6. #6
    Floater is offline Member
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    Go to EBay, there are usually Goljan for sale - keep checking daily as EBay pulls these auctions down occassionaly
    Last edited by Floater; 04-04-2006 at 05:23 AM.

  7. #7
    veetz is offline Junior Member
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    Falcon worked well for me! Bottom line, find a resource you feel comfortable with and stick with it. All too often, people try to pull info from multiple resources and this just adds to the confusion.

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