Usmle Step 2 Ck Preparation, How to get a good score
There are thousands of “How to get 99”, “How to ace on USMLE”. For step 2 CK I particularly like this one, which is the closest to my understanding of the preparation for step 2 CK. I found it on ayubians.com, written by ReZ. Here it is:
My preparation for USMLE Step 2 CK was somewhat less dramatic, less intense and less varied than step 1. However if you sit for the preparation after giving step 1 it is still tiring. The first thing is that there are not a lot of good books as options for studying step 2. Almost everyone studies the Kaplan series with some additions. The books I used were:
1. Kaplan series for Step 2 CK: IM, OB/GYN, PED, SURG, PSY (All other series like HY etc are not popular for step 2)
2. Kaplan Qbook Step 2 CK (its quite easy compared to the exam but i thought it was still good for practice)
3. USMLEworld Qbank Step 2 CK (your main source of questions)
4. Step 2 Mock Exam (Not very useful, questions are not according to pattern in exam, can contribute to knowledge, do only if time)
5. Kaplan DVD: Only ones worth watching are Medicine. Pediatrics is totally useless avoid at all costs (just reading from the book). Many people like to watch the obgyn ones but I didnt. If you are gonna sit for step 2 right after step 1, chances are u will be pretty bored and u will wanna be over with it soon. In that case if u get very bored watching any DVD is still better than reading nothing at all. One more thing the DVDs in Pakistan are quite old (2002), make sure you have the latest books)
6. If you really wanna do good at screening questions you should go through some sections of the U.S. Preventive Task Force website (Google USPSTF): Here you have to go and see the latest guidelines for immunization and prevention of the most popular diseases. The website is pretty huge and you do not need to go through all of it. Go to this page:
Select the most common diseases in each category e.g. in cancer see colon, breast etc. Do the preventive measures only. Read the recommendations but make sure you LEARN only the stuff in BOLD. i.e. the actual recommendation. You can read the rationale but no need to memorize it. Remember do this only if u start early and have a lot of time. There are a good number of screening questions on the exam and although u can do most from kaplan, this web site will help you get the extra question or two correct.
Step 2 preparation is shorter and takes much less time than step 1. You should go through kaplan 3 times and then qbook and usmleworld or any other sources you can find. The main thing is to practice questions. Also you need to increase your reading speed. The questions on step 2 are much longer than step 1. Although there is a good mixture of short, medium and long questions throughout the exam but overall the question sizes are much larger. You need to practice reading through questions quickly and picking up all the facts. It is an exam of reading as much as knowledge. Remember it is one hour longer than step 1 (one extra block). It is a very tiring exam. Be very careful about time! It flies by! Do not ponder over a single question very long. You cannot do all the questions right and nobody does. If you can figure out the answer in less than minute then its fine. Otherwise take a chance and move on to the next question.
Although step 2 preparation is a little easier than step 1, ironically the exam is a bit tougher. But if you put in some good work there is no reason you shouldnt get a good score. If anyone has questions feel free to ask. Best of luck!