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USMLE Step 1-Style Question Breakdown Webinar ~ Powered by TrueLearn

We have been running a USMLE-style question breakdown webinar series this summer, and were getting requests to bring back another installment this month. Our friends at TrueLearn rose to the occasion to provide us with USMLE Step 1-style questions from their SmartBank for our tutors to dissect in real time during the webinar.

Hosted by our exceptional USMLE tutors, Drs. Fred Bertino and Sana Majid, and TrueLearn's Director of Academic Success, Sherry Smith, this webinar focused on providing guidance and high-yield techniques for how to approach a brand-new set of USMLE Step 1-style questions and maximize your score. We covered tips on questions that require dissecting long vignettes, interpreting labs, selecting answer choices presented in a table, and more! We also answered attendees' questions during our live Q&A following the webinar, and that's all captured here:

If you'd like to utilize TrueLearn's SmartBank for your Step 1 studies, enter promo code MST50 at checkout for 50% off the purchase of any USMLE Step 1 SmartBank subscription at TrueLearn.com! (Click here to automatically apply this offer to your shopping cart.)

If you're ready to work with a tutor like Fred or Sana to maximize your studies, take out the guesswork, and get your best score, call us or email us at any time to be matched with your tutor! 212.327.0098 or HQ@medschooltutors.com.

Here's more information on the essential elements for succeeding on Step 1, and best practices for utilizing NBMEs in your prep. Lastly, here's one of our top posts breaking down what scoring a 260 on Step 1 really means.

Five Biggest Mistakes Students Make with First Aid for USMLE Step 1
We all know a review book is a must for the USMLE. Our review book of choice here at Med School Tutors is First Aid for the USMLE Step 1, commonly referred to as “First Aid.” This is no surprise, as it is the most commonly used review book for the USMLE—not just nationally but worldwide. Every student utilizes First Aid, but the spread of scores they receive run the gamut of failing to curve-setting. The difference comes down to how they are utilizing First Aid. When to start? What to write inside? How many times to read it? While there are many ways to get through the experience with your goal score on your score report, from the thousands of hours we’ve spent helping students achieve their goals, we’ve found these to be five biggest mistakes students make with First Aid while studying for Step 1.
Learn Your Learning Style to Maximize Your Med School Study Power

I remember the pure joy of realizing I could now pursue my dream of becoming a doctor, the acceptance phone call I got from the dean of admissions followed by the excitement of telling my friends and family. But as my school start date crept towards me, anxious thoughts started to swirl in my mind. How would I possibly learn the sheer volume of material that I would soon face? I asked this question to a few people on the interview trail, and still recall what one wise, grizzled 4th year shared with me, "Medical school is not any harder than the courses you took in college, in fact in many ways the material is easier -- physics, organic chemistry, and on -- you won’t encounter any subject close to that difficult in class. The hardest part is the volume. It really does feel sometimes like ‘drinking from a fire hose."

How to Make Your Own Flashcards for the USMLEs

Are you looking for a time-efficient and effective way to get down all of those nitty gritty details in First Aid? Flashcards are one of the best tools you can use to memorize material. 

Flashback to First Aid: How and Why To Use First Aid for Step 1 When Preparing for Step 2 CK

Throughout my academic career, I’ve made it a habit of performing some large gesture to signify the completion of every major academic milestone. When I completed the ACT, I celebrated by burning the review book in a bonfire at my parent’s house. After learning that I did well enough on the MCAT, I purged the Kaplan books from my life in the fire pit at my college house. While I’m not a pyromaniac, you can guess what happened to my First Aid for Step 1 when I finally closed that chapter of my life.

Three Ways to Get Ahead with First Aid for USMLE Step 1
First Aid is often hailed as the Step 1 "Bible" by everyone and anyone who has had to study for those dreaded medical examination boards. In fact, the most common piece of advice I personally heard as a wide-eyed junior medical student was to have First Aid in one hand and then UWorld in the other.

But there's often still very little detailed advice out there on  how to use First Aid productively and efficiently.

What to do then?  Should I try to read it? Impossible, First Aid is too dense.  Should I try to re-copy it or make flashcards for every section in First Aid? Inefficient and therefore useless.  Do I leave it under my pillow at night and try osmosis? Ha! I wish.

After trying a couple of strategies, I finally came upon a few things that worked for me. Using the three pointers below, I was able to stay productive — and (more importantly) sane — throughout my Step 1 study period, and ultimately score a 260.

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