USMLE:Preparation , plan & Resource


How to prepare for the test usmle?

My first piece of advice about the United States Medical Licensing Examination (better known as the USMLE) is to accept it with a smile! There is no way to get out of taking these tests (Steps 1 and 2) if you wish to practice in the United States. So, you might as well have a good attitude. Think of it just as it sounds, a “step” on the road to becoming a doctor.

The good news about the USMLE is that there are many resources that can help (see below), and there is no one right way to prepare. The most important thing is to figure out a plan that suits you and then stick to it. I’d like to encourage you to find a personalized study plan that will guide you and keep you smiling through your study experience — even during the test.


First, you need to think about 3 things:
1) which type of learner you are, 2) what environment you study best in (café, library, test prep center), and 3) whether you want to study with partners. Take time to think through these questions before you start.

To determine what type of learner you are, ask yourself: Are you a self-starter or do you like to follow a series of guidelines? If you are a self-starter, you may want to buy a review book and a series of flash cards, and then sign up for a question bank service and outline your own study plan. If you learn better by following instructions, you may want to consider signing up for a test prep course. Although courses can be expensive, the reduced stress of planning may be worth it to you.

Once you know what type of learner you are, you can invest in the right study materials for you. For example, if you are a visual learner, take time to leaf through different review books before you buy, looking for graphics that work best for you.
Next, take time to pick your favorite study spot and note the hours of operation, nearby restaurants, and even proximity to a gym or pool, so that you can take an exercise- or food-related study break.

Finally, you must decide whether you want to study in a group or alone. Be honest with yourself. If you do choose to study in a group, pick only 1 or 2 people as study partners. Agree on a study plan that makes you feel good about yourself and that utilizes your strengths.


The next thing to do is to make a schedule. You may want to buy a calendar to use solely for blocking out study sessions. Do not skip this step! Studying for these exams takes time, and it is easy to lose motivation if you do not have a plan. Another important step is to review the test materials on the USMLE Web site (see Resources below). This will help you know exactly what you are getting into before you start.

When you are studying, be sure to stay on track. It is helpful to take a diagnostic pretest to examine your areas of weakness and strength. Focus on your areas of weakness, because all sections of the test will contribute to your score.
Practice Questions

If there is 1 “rule” for the USMLE, it is to read many practice questions. You may want to sign up for a question service, such as Q-bank (see Resources below). Start reviewing questions from the beginning of your preparation period, and keep going back to them throughout. Do not leave practice questions until right before the test. Dr. Andreas Carl, the author of USMLE Made Ridiculously Simple (Medmaster, Miami, Florida), says a good goal is 100 questions per day, so get started! When you make mistakes, write down the correct answers, and review them at the end of the day to solidify what you learned.

Pamper Yourself
If you allow yourself to feel good during your exam preparation, it is more likely that you will feel good during the exam. So don’t forget to pamper yourself! Make sure that you allow for time to eat, exercise, and sleep. You may want to block times to study and play in your calendar so that you have things to look forward to.
Remember the basics: Get plenty of sleep both the night before the exam and 2 nights before it. Pack your bag the night before exam day. Bring layers of clothing to adjust to different room temperatures and to stay comfortable. Bring a watch. Bring a lunch. Bring your smile.

Books dedicated to the test in the core subjects (seven books), which is in the following:

1- Kaplan lecture note for USMLE step 1, edition: 2010-2011
These are seven books in the basic materials prepared for the test covering the following articles:
Featuring books, comprehensive and the questions at the end of each chapter and the presentation in the form of points in order to facilitate conservation of the student may feel the reader in some cases, it is a long thing, but suitable in most cases to prepare for this test is designed to give the lectures live to piece the best way is to combine recorded lectures, books, and if you did not help the student work that is sufficient for benefit of lectures recorded in the material that feels that he has the weaknesses or the subjects of uncertainty .

Has been critical of some of this series of books in some subjects and topics Veron, they may be falling short of hand in some of the topics or that it increased the detail in other topics, but keep this series of the most important books that are with the student in the preparation and passivity may be overcome by the student in different ways and remain positives are prevalent on these books .

2 – Book of the questions which is:
Kaplan Q book, edition: 2010-2011
This book is dedicated to questions that may be similar to those given in the test questions in this book is divided depending on the material for every separate article of its own …. it is suitable … After the completion of it would prefer to take advantage of the locations listed below .

3 – Review of the book (containing the most important information in the full basic materials), which is to:
First aid USMLE step 1, student to student guide, 2011
This book is very useful for the one who improves the use of which is characterized by a focus on information that the student should be familiar and that do not make sense to enter the test and he does not know which is characterized by brevity and creativity of ways to save the information and Ptcef inclusive for all basic materials and is often used for review and have a shortcut to you and you read books mentioned in point (1) .It would be better if You have a full, even if not read .

4 –  recorded lectures (audio and video lectures in all subjects), which are
A – Kaplan DVD
B – Goljan audio lectures (pathology only)

       These recorded lectures useful information to install and to illustrate the mysterious and show them the importance in studying materials that are not sufficiently in the Faculty of Medicine, such as:
Behavioral science, genetic, molecular biochemistry, biostatics … ect
I have found that some students used in these articles and say that the recorded lectures in the rest of the material is similar to the books so no need to follow-up to save time and shows and God knows that the most appropriate way to use it is to make the material feel the student that he has weaknesses which if followed, all that is better .

5 – websites (specialized sites in the questions on the test), which I will mention several sites and the four best sites in my opinion are:
USMLE World Qbank
Kaplan Qbank
USMLERx Step 1 Qmax
These sites give you the impression that prepare you for it is sufficient or not, and give estimates of the degree of which can be obtained in the test .

Done by : Dr.Wafaa Hatim
Reference: 1-
2-Knights of Medicine

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