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Mistakes I Made After I wrote Step 1

June 10, 2008

1. Didn’t start studying right away for Step 2 CK.

2. Asked for more hours at work, and that kept me busy for more than 3 months.

3. Watched Kaplan lectures and read Kaplan notes, which is very time consuming.

4. Couldn’t figure out which one is the best short review book to supplement Kaplan notes.

5. Didn’t stay in touch with my colleagues who helped me for Step 1.

6. Enrolled and started studying for Step 2 CS in the middle of the studying for Step 2 CK.

What I had to do:

1. Start studying right away for Step 2 CK.

2. Start practicing the usmleworld Q-bank questions, instead of reading Kaplan notes (the notes are very good but too lengthy, not possible to remember everything). If I just added usmleworld Qs and First Aid for Step 2 over the knowledge for Step 1, this is more than enough for a score more than 95. Now, I started forgetting Step 1 material and have to go back and review it again. The Qs for Step 2 are the same like Step 1, with some upgrades for diagnosis and therapy.

3. Zero hours at work.

Now, I am extending my preparation with one more year. I hoped I could make it for much 2009, but it is too late now.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. June 13, 2008 1:23 pm

    Oh, I am sad to hear that. Do you have a good job that you can support your family from? Did you do well on your Step 1 exam? What happened to CS? Did you pass?

  2. June 13, 2008 1:56 pm

    Hi Y.S.,
    I did pass step 1 with 93, not a bad score considering the fact that I was working almost full time.
    I work in a hospital in Toronto. The money they pay are OK, but you can’t have good lifestyle. And the type of job is kind of not my favorite…anyways I don’t want to complain. So far so good.

  3. June 13, 2008 11:43 pm

    93? that is very good! 😀

    Oh, good for you. I know people who are stuck without jobs in the US. It is tough to rely on parental support for so long. Good life style will come eventually, don’t worry. 😉

  4. Mar permalink
    August 13, 2008 5:58 pm

    Hello, I am a second year medical student and i’m planning to take usmle step 1 after 3rd year. I did buy the kaplan lecture books, but i’m finding that they’re very detailed. Can you please give me any tips on what books and materials I should study from. Thank You so much! Also, Congrats on the 93! That’s amazing!

  5. August 13, 2008 6:23 pm

    @Mar:Thank you! 93 is very achievable score. You can do better than that.
    If you want to see my simple study plan take a look at this post:

    I can give more detailed explanation about my way of studying, but I need some time, because at that moment I am very busy.
    For now, I can give you 2 advice:
    1.start the preparation early
    2.the more you study, the more you know, the higher the score.

    Kaplan is detailed, but important for the score over 90. So, start reading Kaplan and watch the videos. That will give you a solid base.

    I will provide you with some additional points in the next few days.

    Take care!

  6. Mar permalink
    August 14, 2008 5:53 pm

    Thank you so much! Telling me that a score over 90 is very encouraging, as i’m very nervous! I know I still have about 2 years ahead of me.. but I really want to get a good score. Thanks again.

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