An Average Student's USMLE Step 1 Experience

An Average Student's USMLE Step 1 Experience

5 years ago

~1.6 mins read


There are lots of experiences for the beginners to motivate them and choose the right resources and how to use them. This one’s for those in their mid/end phase of preparation and aren’t getting the desired score in NBME/ predictive assessments.

Don’t take NBME seriously.

I use to tell this to myself before taking any assessment, and almost ended up being heart broken every time. Mostly because I read too many people saying how predictive 18/20 was for them, but let me tell you, I scored almost 35+ more than I scored in 20 (2 months ago) and 20+ more than NBME 18 5 days before exam, (how? Read 2nd point).


For me most predictive was uwsa (within 5 points)

Your attitude before and on exam day matters a lot.

I lost all hopes after NBME18 (5 days before), seriously I got such low score in 18 that the only motivation left for me was ‘ just 5 more days, that’s it’, thereafter I entered this false (super)confident mode, And it worked like charm. Day before exam I studied till evening and then went to a Japanese Restaurent, took long walk, watched YouTube etc and slept like a baby. In morning I had 1/2 cup of coffee, oats and walked to the exam centre listening to my favourite playlist.


Took break after every block, ate only protein bar (no lunch). In last 2 I couldn’t complete blocks b/c of fatigue, total 2 question unanswered. I celebrated regardlessly.

One thing that really helped was taking 120 at centre. It made me more confident and less anxious on exam day.

Sticking to resource is more important than trying getting the best of everything.

ZAnki/UFAP/BNB+lighyear/kaplan/najeeb/BRS/sketchy these are some really powerful tools, that doesn’t mean u have to do them all. Just choose one and stick to it. Have a routine, take breaks when needed, use pomadoro, you should be good.

Total duration of preparation 6 months

Nbme 13- 205 base line April

Uwsa 1 (at 50% uw) 243 may

Nbme 20- 200 June

nbme 18 215 5day before

Uwsa 2 243 20 days before

Free 120 80% 2 days before

Real deal


trust your knowledge, hardwork and judgment.

Jai mata di.

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