5 Tips for Developing a USMLE Step 1 Study Plan

USMLE Step 1 study plan

Step 1 of the United States Medical Licensing Examination (or USMLE) covers all preclinical topics taught in medical school, from DNA replication to the details of disorders like ulcerative colitis and diabetes. Depending on your school’s curriculum, you may take this test anywhere between completion of your preclinical requirements and graduation, with the majority of schools offering a “dedicated” study period in which to review after wrapping up preclinical classes. No matter when you plan to take Step 1, however, one thing is clear: there is a lot to go over, and you probably do not feel like you have enough time to cover everything. Developing a reasonable study plan as you head into your dedicated study period can help reduce Step 1 preparation from an impossible task to one that seems difficult, yet doable. Studying for Step 1 will never be easy, but these five tips can make it more manageable:

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Board Preparation: Training for a Marathon, not a Sprint 

The first key to success on the boards is using practice questions to develop your “hunch reflex.” If you’re a second year medical student, “kinda-sorta” thinking about a certain test you’ll have to take in about six months, and you haven’t already begun using USMLE/COMLEX-style practice questions in your study, you should start now. Even if you’re just half way through first year, start incorporating the following advice into your study plan: questions, questions, questions!

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How to use a Pea Plant to Increase your USMLE, COMLEX, and Shelf Exam Scores

80/20 principle

Studying for the boards overwhelms most people. The sheer amount of information to know is … Read more

3 Ways to Prepare for the USMLE Step 1 Exam

The USMLE Step 1 exam is arguably one of the most important tests in a medical student’s career. While a student’s score on Step 1 is taken into consideration amongst many other factors, the score still plays a major role in determining a student’s competitiveness for residency in certain specialties. After all, once a student has applied to a specialty, his or her Step 1 score will partially determine which types of institutions he or she will have the opportunity to interview at. Below are three general strategies to help you prepare for the USMLE Step 1 exam:

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