Step 1 Preparation and Experience

245+ in Step 1 using a Weird Study Method

Weird study method:

I made a really good friend in medical school and we decided to split the cost of UWorld.

I made a schedule on Osmosis (could use Cramfighters too) and, for example, we would begin studying with Neurology for 5 days. Then after Neurology, we would go onto the next system which for us happened to be GI.

While we were studying for GI, my friend would come over for 1-3 hours a day and we would do a block of Neurology (tutor) together since we were supposed to have learned all of the Neurology section. Yes, we spent a long time on each block.

We did this method until Uworld was completely finished. We would talk through each question together and he would explain things I did not understand. I was baseline better at bugs and drugs and would explain those to him when he did not understand a question. I would make my own anki cards on the “main concept” of every question I didn’t understand.

After the 1-3 hours block of Uworld, he would leave and we would study whatever section (GI) on our own. We study differently, so the only stipulation we had was “learn all of the GI section in 4 days” choosing whatever resources worked best for us. I liked Sketchy and B&B. He just used class lectures and first aid.

This method worked out for us because:

  1. Cheaper
  2. It kept us accountable. He would come over 8am sharp and fix my sleep schedule and get us into a routine.
  3. It would force me to think about every question instead of just blindly guessing. We would reason through each answer on why it’s correct/incorrect. When I study by myself, I’m just tempted to just pick an answer “cause it sounds right” without reasoning through it and move on.
  4. I liked seeing another living human for a few hours everyday, and I wouldn’t have been as mentally happy if I were just studying by myself all day.

We only did NBME forms 19 and 13 because they were free and we are cheap. Together we scored a 255 and 269 respectively.

On UWSA1 we scored a 271 and on USWA2 we scored a 269.

On the real day, I will say we didn’t score as high as our practice scores but still well (245+ for both of us). Neither of us didn’t actually have a score in mind we were reaching for either (we both want to do primary care), we just wanted to do “the best we possibly could”.

So because of our method, we couldn’t really do a “predictor score” since our scores were inflated by having each other to reason through and catch each other’s mistakes. This method only works well if you’re okay with not having a true confidence predictor. I mean, you could always just take a practice test on your own.

This also only works if you have a dedicated study buddy you get along with.



Leave a Reply