How to crack USMLE Step 1 as an undergrad: A Bolanian Experience

1

Starting with the great name of Allah Almighty.

Note: Please refer to my whole experience. It’s not just for USMLE aspirants but also has many valuable lessons for newly enrolled students of MBBS. I was not fortunate enough to by guided as such. I feel you shouldn’t be unfortunate like me.

My name is Abdul Qahar Khan Yasinzai and I am a final year MBBS student of batch 2016-17 in Bolan Medical College, Quetta. I gave my Usmle step 1 on 19 January 2022 and scored 241.

It’s such an honor and privilege writing my experience to steer young Bolanians. I have always carried this will in my heart to do something good for my people and institution. It gives me more pleasure making others successful than getting successful.

Disclaimer: Just get what best fits you from my experience. Don’t follow me as it is. There are people who have achieved far better than what I have achieved and with totally different patterns and strategies. Always follow your guts, they know you better than anyone else. I read hundreds of experiences and always followed my own pattern. And this isn’t just for USMLE, I will also try to cover how to study for MBBS for newly enrolled students of Bolan Medical College.

I am going to start with my experience so far and I will give my recommendations of do and don’t in the end. I always have a policy of doing things with passion or not at all. So as I entered med school I wanted to do it in the most excellent way possible. And after hearing and reading from many people, I found out that USMLE by far is the hardest and most daunting journey. So I started to plan for it during my second year of MBBS. My plan of action was simple, to build a good base and then supplement it with High yield resources.

For Anatomy, during my basic years, I did KLM which had a more clinical touch to anatomy and that’s what we need as a doctor. Studying and memorizing angles, borders, etc is a piece of obsolete information and is a total waste of time. It’s even a social injustice on behalf of a teacher who is making students memorize non-practical and outdated information. I tried to focus on practical information only like hernias, nerve damages, surgical sites, injection site, blood vessels, and I ignored almost everything else. I never bothered to think about topping profs, stages etc, I just wanted to pass it. I was even mocked by many of our teachers for not remembering the basic things like names of every muscle in forearm. But deep down my mind will always tell me to why I need to remember that when I know most of practical knowledge of hand on fingers tips. I know Carpel tunnel, I know avascular necrosis of scaphoid bone, I know Antero lateral dislocation of supracondylar fracture will damage median nerve and it will paralyse the lateral half of hand till the ring finger. I don’t need the rest of impractical information.

For Neuroanatomy, I watched all videos of legendary Dr Najeeb and I made my own notes. Though they were very lengthy but they Iron build my base. Subsequently, I also did Kaplan Neuroanatomy by Dr White and it made neuro super easy. Don’t ever do snell etc. These two resources are enough during your early years.

Also must take classes of Dr Tariq Bazai sb. Such teachers are gems and very rare in our settings. He will make complex anatomy a piece of cake for you.

For Physiology, I loved reading Guyton but such books including KLM have a huge downside that eventually you will retain nothing especially for profs. But such books gave me an insight to complex concepts. I also used Dr Najeeb’s lectures, and it made cardiac physiology extremely easy. I also got supple in my first year Physio, many of you all already know why physio was failing students in bulk at the time. Telling you this because a supple should not affect you in any way. Exam vivas purely depends on luck, like the state of mind of a teacher and what type of questions you get. So just pass it with any kind of jugarh you can make and don’t give it a lot of attention.

For Biochemistry, I studied Lippincott and watched Dr najeeb’s videos. Know and learn each and every enzyme of glucose metabolism. Biochem has a lot of clinical correlates and it is very high yield for Step 1. Must do it in totality and with absolute concentration. I don’t recommend Lippincott either because I couldn’t remember anything in the end. I suggest do Kaplan along with lectures of Dr Sam turco. You can revise Kaplan 10 times with the amount of time it’s going take for you to complete Lippincott. I was an Idiot back then, I didn’t realized it until I lost that previous time.

Then came my 2nd prof (i.e 3rd year of MBBS). It had a lot of excellent subjects like Pharma and Micro. I loved reading it.

For Pharmacology, I did Lippincot and Dr Najeeb initially, studied whole Lippincot and got done with all videos of Dr Najeeb. Then started doing Kaplan with 2010 videos of Dr Lionel Raymon . Completed and annotated all Kaplan. By the time I mastered Pharma but still not enough to satisfy the department, though I was internally satisfied. Same recommendation, Instead of Lippincott do Kaplan 10 times.

For Microbiology, I did sketchy, what an amazing resources it is. I feel sorry for those who don’t had the fortune to have such resource. It will make microbiology a fun game for you. I studied lewinson too for bacteria but I strongly discourage doing it, it was a waste of time. I transitioned to MRS and studied parasitology from it. MRS too is an amazing book. Sketchy and MRS is a bomb combition. I also later used Becker’s Micro by Dr Mary Reubesh.

For General Pathology, I did Dr Najeeb’s Lectures and first chapter of Robbins. It was more than enough.

Then came the destructor of world order, the COVID19. Our exams were delayed and everything was shut down. It is famously said when life throws lemon, make lemonade. I utilized this shut down by studying Kaplan Biochemistry along with 2014 lectures of Dr Sam Turco, a true legend and an amazing teacher. I also did Behavior sciences of Dr Steven Daugherty and Immunology/Microbiology from another legendary teacher Dr Marry Reubesh, both from Beckers 2014 lectures. I also did Neuroanatomy Kaplan from Dr White’s along with my own notes which I made from Dr Najeeb’s lectures. After that I did Pathoma along with lectures of Dr Hussain sattar. I completed Pathoma in just 15 days, annotated it. So I was done from 4rth year’s special pathology even before the beginning of my 4rth year. Exam was still uncertain, so I started doing offline Uworld. I completed about 2000 UW questions by the time I was done with 3rd year exam. I gave NBME 15 at the beginning of my 4rth year and my score turned out to be 194. It boosted my confidence since I had a whole year ahead and I already reached a passing baseline for Step 1.

Then came the last phase, my one year dedicated. The high yield phase when I have to supplement my already strong base with recommended resources. I started First Aid Usmle step 1, known as the Bible of Step 1. I completed Biohem then started doing Boards and Beyond videos of Dr Jason Ryan. I don’t know how many times I am going to say legend for such teachers. I don’t have words to justify their greatness with just mere words. Dr Jason ryan will teach you things in just 10 minutes which you won’t be able to learn in a whole month in your med school. After doing Biochem at the time Amboss was giving free self assessment so I subscribed for their library and availed their self assessment opportunity. It was Feb 2021, I got 206 marks in Amboss self assessment. My confidence skyrocketed since I passed step 1 without even going through my 1 year dedicated ahead in which I will be doing FA and UW. Then came a break of month or two because I got married Alhumdulillah. It was a very hard decision since many people cautioned me about a potential disruption of schedule and dedication. But fortunately I was back on track after two months. I was even more goal directed now. It’s a very exaggerated misconception that marriage will affect your studies, it’s doesn’t when one is dedicated. I am a living proof.

So after that FA and BNB took about 7 months and it was September 2021 when I completed it. During the time I also started my registration process since it takes about 4-5 months to completely process. I was fortunate enough, I got the permit by November and I booked date in 3 months advance.

For Epidemiology- Biostatics and Ethics-Communications, I did Steven Daugherty as I said earlier and also read 100 cases of ethics. Uworld was enough to strengthen both. In the end to reinforce these I also watched Randy o neil biostatistics and Dirty medicine for the rest. You can find these lectures on youtube, they are super amazing. I did it almost a week or two before my exam.

Then came the last 4 month dedicated. I was done with FA, BNB and also annotated many things from Amboss library. I subscribed to UW 6 months packages and started doing UW. With that I also got familiarized with another revolutionary resource Anki. I watched many youtube videos regarding it, and learnt all necessary things. I started doing the Anking deck system wise for 2 hours everyday. After that I was doing UW 40 Questions per day. It was very hard to maintain initially, I struggled but never gave up. I remember I made a 90 days streak of 8 hours average study per day. I was exhausted to my core, took a day break then restarted it and made another 45 day streak. By the end of November I gave NBME 18 and scored 232. And after some weeks when I gave UW self assessment 1 and scored 251. I was so satisfied finally, I reached my desired range.

I ended my first read of UW 3600 questions on 2 January 2022. I only had about 15 days with me. I spent this whole time on youtube videos of Dirty medicine and Randy o neil to strengthen my Biostatistics and communication/ethics. I gave UW self assessment 2 on Jan 15 and scored 249. It made me sure I am going to score in this range. I reached Islamabad 2 days before to ensure my sleep wake cycle as per the timings of test. The day before the exam I woke up on 5 a.m sharp to ensure I get to bed by 9 p.m. But I have sleep onset insomnia, it’s very hard for me to sleep without exercise and with something in my mind. I went to med store to buy some sleep inducing med specially melatonin, but couldn’t found it. So I was out of options, I found Alprazolam which I totally discourage since it will make you drowsy the next morning. What I did was to take the smallest dose and then ate just the ¼ part of a single tab. It induced a little sleep I was asleep by 11 pm. Woke up by 5 a.m and drank a very dark coffee. Took protein bars, dry fruit, Kajoor and a cup of coffee with me to the center. Reached the center 8 a.m and came out on 5 a.m. It surely wasn’t easy sitting there for 8 hours but great things demands great exertion. And this is how I made it.

Time Management

Honestly, I took very few classes and almost no ward for two years. This is a forbidden benefit of being Bolanian. My total dependency was on my good friends (They deserve their due credits: Waseh Achakzai, Daniyal Yasinzai, Mohsin Panezai and many other fellows as well) who never forgot me in proxies :p.

In my opinion, no offence to the concerned departments, taking wards in 3rd year and 4rth year is a total waste of time. There is absolutely no concentration from college and departments, half of the years hospitals are closed and half of the time there is no one to teach you. No one even takes you serious during these years. There is total anarchy in BMC. So instead just learn history takings in just few weeks of 3rd and 4rth. In final year I believe you should take wards in order to strengthen your practical skills and get prepared for exams. I also skipped many college lectures, but I believe you should not miss lectures of excellent teachers like Dr Abid Sb-Pharma, Dr Naseer sb-HOD pharma, Dr Kaleem sb-Histo, Dr Nadeem Samad Sb- Patho, Forensic HOD (I forgot her name, she is a very professional teacher), Dr Tariq Bazai sb- Anatomy, Dr Azmat sb-Anatomy and many other excellent teachers of our institute which I can’t recall at the moment.

Time management will never be an issue once you discipline yourself and as I said consistency is the key. I studied every single day atleast two hours for straight 2-3 years. Be consistent, don’t burn yourself by studying extensively for some days and then wasting many days straight on rest. Instead study less but for a very long time. I gave deadlines to myself, made a page of whole year on what I am going to study and in how much time. For example in page I had mentioned I will study pathoma from 1 march to 15 march, and after that I will take 1 day break and start studying for my next project which Is studying 100 cases of ethics till 21 march. This way I made a whole year of schedule and most of the times I didn’t met the deadlines but this scheduling always helped me manage doing such a long list of resources. I will cut my breaks short to make for the lost time or unscheduled breaks. I compromised but never total messed up.

Dos and Don’t

-Study smart and not hard. Why are you even studying gynae from huge resources if you don’t want to become a gynecologist in the future? Just pass it and study it as per the demands of profs etc. I believe medical education is very unfair even at international level. Why am I studying neurology if I am becoming a Urologist in the future? Every system should have been divided like BDS. There should be BCS (Bechlor of Cardiology), BNS (Bechlor of Neurology) and so on. Just imagine if a student start studying cardiology for 5 years of MBBS. Life of a med student will become so easy and we would produce extraordinary specialists. We will be free from the fallacy of remembering everything so just to forget it later after MBBS when we enter other specialities.

-Get done with Kaplan in your early years like do Kaplan Biochem in 1st and 2nd year. Also adapt to new resources like Physeo and Osmosis. Try to become independent of Bookish study. The world is moving with a great pace, they are using new applications, Atlases and animations for anatomy instead of reading huge books like Grays and KLM etc. I did anatomy for my step 1 from Physeo too, they strengthen my clinical loopholes further.

-Use short books but standard books like Pathoma, MRS, Short Katzung and not irfan masood etc. Most of our national authors have substandard books, their whole writing is a copy paste. And short books must be revised 4-5 times because revision is the key to remembering things. Big books like Robbins is what I call the “novels of medicine”. You will love reading them but ultimately you won’t be able to remember anything nor you will be able to revise it. A good undergrad book will only tell you that a glioblastoma multiforme is GFAP positive, usually crosses midline and is common in adults while robbin will tell you a 10 pages details about it and you will remember nothing.

-Start reading Usmle step 1 First Aid even from first year. Like if you were doing brachial plexus, do that section from first Aid too and understand every single line of it. So by the time you reach 4rth year you will already be done with most of first Aid. Use it even for profs and stages revisions. It carries all the necessary information.

-Start doing Q banks like Kaplan, BNB, Usmle Rx during your initial years. I was not fortunate enough to be guided by someone for these. Instead of doing big books I recommend do these Q banks. They will give you a practical insight about a certain topic. These Q banks will strengthen your analyzing skills. Even without step 1, you will develop skills of diagnosing patients with a lot of ease. Like book will tell you tens of symptoms for Myositis but only Q banks will tell you that these patients complains of being unable to button their shirt. It gives you an insight of practical knowledge of a certain disease. Although only Amboss and Uworld are recommended in your dedicated periods.

-Also use Amboss Library for rapid internet searches. Instead of looking things in books use amboss. They charge about 9 dollars per month (about 1700 rupees). I used it during my dedicated period for X-rays, CTs and histology. Amboss library is gold.

– My sincere apologies to both departments. Ditch and give very small time to Forensic and Community medicine. I passed CM by studying it for just a week, I covered most of it from youtube videos. Do it in the shortest time possible. However for students who want to pursue Medicolegal studies and MPH in the future, I strongly recommend doing both from standard resources and with full concentration. Although since I was done with FA and Steven Daugherty lectures So I already knew Epidemilogy and Biostatistics both of which were important chapters in theory and viva. I only did the rest of things in just a week. I was hitting two birds with one stone. I was preparing for steps and along side I unintentionally covered most of my profs subject.

-Don’t give much attention to your results of stages and proffs as I already mentioned. I barely passed stages because teachers were asking something which I usually considered it an obsolete information and completely unnecessary for my practical knowledge as a doctor. I even got supple as I mentioned previously. Always study by thinking how a certain information will help you care for your patient and you as a doctor? – Don’t become a book worm by studying 24/7. You will burn yourself out. Medical is such a vast field that even in a thousand lives you won’t be able to complete it. Study atleast for 4 hours everyday and with consistency. I have never studied more than 10 hours even during my dedicated period. Prefer Quality over Quantity. And always know that It’s a marathon and not a sprint. Whenever you get burnt out, think that this hardship is gonna make you save a life someday. You will be someone’s hero someday. It will motivate you.

– Use Pomodoro watch, an application that tracks your study timing. I used it for a whole year, like start a watch and study for straight 25 minutes, it then rings and gives you 5 mins break then restart it and again a 5 min break. In this way I would complete 8-12 times 25 mins sessions for everyday. Each 2 sessions was equivalent to 1 hour of study. It’s the most productive way to study. You will lose your concentration after 30 mins of consecutive study, so must take 5 mins break but not more than this. To become more discipline get used to Pomodoro.

You can see during the month of August I studied for 6075 mins excluding the 5 mins breaks in between. This is about a 3.5 hours study per day. You can see every single day is filled with some timing, this is how dedicated I was.

-Remain consistent, without consistency it’s almost impossible to ace Step 1. I have a record streak on Anki of 90 days. I did anki for straight 2 hours per day for 90 days. Even in severe fever, I remember I didn’t wanted to break that streak.

Extracurricular activities

– Apart from studying, I was also an active member of many BMC societies like IFMSA. In fact I remained the general secretary of BMC-LC at the time. I am the current head of writer’s club and VPA at Bolanian’s research forum. During this time I also contributed to many papers and got published in two research papers. You must play an active role in these positive activities too. Becoming a bookworm will only make you a good theoretical achiever but will weaken you practically. You learn more by interacting with people.

-Exercise even in your most important days. It will freshen you up and will improve your concentration. I played and am playing Badminton since the last two years. I am a pro player now. I was even maintaining my game with hours of study everyday during my dedicated time. I just left it a month before the date of my test. I cannot stress this enough how important exercise is. It saved me from depression, anxiety and stress everything that comes with aiming for such targets as Step 1.

– Give time to friends and family but not the time you reserved for your study. I have done Anki even on the eve of Eid Ul adha bec I was free and bored, but when my cousins came along I took a two days of break. In a nutshell don’t just waste free time, utilize it and regain your lost time by studying twice the next day.

– Play role in important state and college affairs. I am not saying do politics, but protest and raise your voice against injustices around you. Being an educated class, a future doctor, people look up to you. Don’t just limit yourself to studying medicine. Also be an active awareness spreader, for example making people understand about antibiotics abuses etc. I was active in every college affair. Been to the press club multiple times, leaded many twitter campaigns etc. However I never took anything personally with my fellows over racial, political and opinion differences. Never hated anyone and I am sure never gotten hate from anyone either. I had a lot of differences with my colleagues but we always had respect and love for each other. Each of us stood firm over what we believed was right and was good for this institute and for the people of Balochistan. Telling you this because this institute needs people like you to save it from exploiters and mafia set of students which almost every batch has. Always resist such students, clerks, and even teachers when you see something wrong is happening. I even voluntarily became part of High court proceedings against our fellows who took stay on exam datesheet. They wanted delay and I was in support of getting exam done because our whole batch was already lagging behind. I still have that order of Chief justice BHC who ruled in our favor along with my and two of my fellows name written in it.

-Also get use to studying other than medicine. Make hobby of reading books. Even though we as med students are very short on time yet we can make room for it, if we want to. During this time I also studied “Sapiens By Yuval harrari”, “The confessions of an economic hitman” and “A brief history of time”. These things add a lot to your knowledge and character. Additionally it will improve your English which is also an important aspect of USMLE, Communication and understanding medicine books too. For example UW says a patient presenting with sparse hair etc etc. Now you may know the concept behind but you don’t know what sparse means? This way you will make blunders in the real exam and will fail to grasp the complete idea of a particular concept. So English too, is an important aspect of this whole process.

-I also did BA political science so to have other options too. Pakistan is unsurvivable especially for people who want to do something good. The only way to live with security and luxury is to be either a bureaucrat or an army officer. So my reason of BA was to have an option for bureaucracy if I ever wanted to in the future.

Cost

This is an important part to address since BMC has a lot of talented students from poor backgrounds. I am definitely fortunate I was able to pay. There are a lot of far talented students than me in BMC, It’s just they have financial restrains and personal problems. I believe there should be a program which can fund talented students of BMC for such aims.

So I started my registration about 6 months in advance. I first paid about $150 ( about 24000/ rupees) for form 186. After successful acceptance of form 186, I further paid $1155 ( about 187000/ rupee) for form 183. It total became at the time $1305 (around 225000/ rupees). This is the total fee of Usmle Step 1. But additionally I had to pay about 80,000/ rupees for 6 months Uworld subscription too. I strongly recommend doing online Uw for the preparation. So the total cost was about 3 Lakh rupees. Also I have to send form 183 to USA through mail which costed about 6000/ rupees. 3 Lakh should be your margin of consideration. Apart from it, if you wanted to do Amboss Qbank it’s gonna cost you around 30.000/ rupees for 3 months.

Around the same will cost you for Step 2 CK too. This journey indeed has a lot of financial burden but it’s worth it. Even if you don’t have any planning of pursuing it, you must do it or study per its pattern to become a great doctor even at your home country. Even at this level I am able to analyze basic ECG, Xrays and CT scans. This whole process changed me as a person and as a learner.

Commonly asked Questions

Q: I don’t have much time, What’s the shortest possible time to clear Step1?

Ans: Since Step 1 has transitioned from score reporting to just pass/fail. So passing it has became a piece of cake now. You can see from my experience I scored 206 on Amboss self assessment even in feb 2021 (My test was on 19 Jan 2022 a whole year of difference) by just doing offline Uworld and Kaplan etc. Although my basics were already strong at the time. Scoring however, is a huge task. It took me a whole year of dedication to increase my score from 206 to 251 on UWSA1. I think even in pass/fail thing, one should have a target in mind to score 250 on self assessments. Because when one score good on step 1, it usually helps in Step 2 CK too. A lot of concepts repeat on Step 2CK. So if you have good basics, it’s gonna take atleast a year for you to reach 250’s but you can pass it by just studying for 6 months.

Q: I am in my 4th year how should I start?

Ans: Start studying from Usmle First Aid. It’s an amazing resources. It has all the important pathologies that you need. However you may not be able to understand every single line, so for that watch Boards and Beyond lectures along with it. BNB runs in equilibrium with FA. Use Google, Amboss Library, books and even your notes for reference to a particular topic/line which you don’t understand in FA. Don’t ever study books like Robbins/Goljan from start to end. It’s foolishness. Alongside this, get used to Anki. It made me remember every fine detail of FA. I can still recall every single histological detail of brain tumors. I can recall every single nephron tubular defect. I still know what liddle syndrome is, what barter syndrome is, what Rett syndrome is, what sturge weber is.

Q: What’s Anki and which deck I used?

Ans: There are tons of videos on Youtube about Anki. It took me a whole week and many videos to understand Anki, it’s functioning and use. I used the Anking Overhaul V9 deck sysmtemwise. Like after completing a chapter from FA, I would start anki of that chapter everyday for 2 hours. I did anki a little atypically, people will usually study the line of a card only and get done with it. But I studied whole refrence FA page beneath it, this is why I was only able to do around 100 cards per day. Means I was reading 100 pages of FA each day for 2 hours. I skipped some chapters which I felt I don’t need to like Biochem, Micro and Pharm because I already mastered those.

Currently the most updated deck of this year is Anking overhaul V11. You can download it from the link below:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1be62yqyEQRmzA9R3Q8JgMK3MdkH6BMI-/view

This is what my decks looked like. You can see the heat map, average cards 116 and my longest streak of 90 days.

Q: I don’t have study resources (Kaplan,Sketchy lectures etc) where can I find them?

Ans: Everything is available on torrent. Learn how to download things from there. If you were not able to find, ask your fellows most of them have it. If they hadn’t, I will give every study material to one of students from each batch so it can distributed easily.

Q: How and when to start registration process for Step 1?

Ans: I strongly recommend you start working on your registration about 6 months in advance of your desired date. Whole Pakistan has got updated to electronic verification which is far convenient and cost friendly, but we unfortunately, due to our incompetent admin are still on postal system due to which there is a lot of miscommunication between our institute and ECFMG (The registration authority). Sometimes they object on student status and documents etc and they either send postal mail or email to our college . You know how BMC works, nobody works honestly here. So you have to constantly look for your own emails and mails.

After signing form 183 from college and ecfmg receiving it. It usually takes 8 weeks maximum for our documents to be completely processed by ECFMG but can be processed in just two weeks if you were a lucky undergrad. It usually takes more time for graduates than undergraduates. After acceptance ecfmg will email you and will provide you with your permit. Now you will be able to book test date on Prometric center website. It’s usually advised to book your date atleast 3 months before because of unavailability of seats when you are near your desired date. There is also youtube videos regarding form etc. We are a fortunate generation, we live in time when everything is available at a click of distance.

I will be requesting principal soon inshALLAH to transition our system to electronic system, hope he agrees. Hope I can be successful in it so atleast my juniors don’t face the problems which I faced.

Q: My self assessments scores?

Ans:

-NBME 15: 194 (December 2020).
-Amboss SA: 206 (Feb 2021).
-NBME 18: 230 (Nov 2021)
-UWSA1: 251 (3 Jan 2022)
-UWSA2: 249 (15 Jan 2022)
-Free 120: 85% (1 day before the test)
-Real deal : 241.

This is how the self assessments evaluates you. It will indicate your weak and strong area. As UWSA indicated, I started working on my Genetics and Biostatistics in the last days.

Due to the sensitivity of time I wasn’t able to do new NMBEs But I strongly recommend doing it. Sometimes you can fortunately have repeat questions from it.

Q: Ethics and Communication?

Ans: It’s indeed a daunting task to have a command on these two. But after doing many lectures from Dirty medicine and Randy O neil, I developed guts. I was able to answer correctly by listening to what my heart. Most of the answers sound very Ok but only one that your gut tells you is usually the correct one. Uworld wasn’t very helpful either. 100 cases of ethics is very old but can still help out.

Q: What’s Uworld and how to use it?

Ans: Uworld is a gold resources. Without it Usmle is almost impossible. I believe every med student should once go through it even without usmle. It gives you practical insight to most of what you learn during MBBS. Although famously quoted for importance of practical work in medicine but I believe it also fits for Uworld.

Uworld helps you understand how a particular diseased patient will present to you. It makes you understand the patient rather than just the disease.

I first did offline Uworld about 2000 Qs. Then after getting done with FA and BNB, I bought online subscription and started doing it at 40 Qs per day. Initially it’s very hard even to manage 10 Qs per day, but eventually you will get used to it. I completed 3600 Qs of Uworld by average 79%.

You must atleast consider 4 months to complete it. Read through whole answer stem including the wrong choices. Prefer Quality over Quantity. It’s recommended to do UW twice. I didn’t had the luxery of time in the end to revise UW one time more because Step 1 was transitioning to Pass/Fail after 26 january 2022. So honestly my test was in a little hurry. I could have clearly pushed my score a little further if I had the time to revise UW once again.

Q: Did you used Amboss?

Ans: Yes I used Amboss library only. But due to time shortage I was not able to do Its Qbank. I recommend it totally. It is an excellent resource if you have time.

Q: How to annotate from UW and make up your First Aid Book?

Ans: I personally cut my FA then punched it with 4 holes, and then made it a ring file. If I were to annotate anything I would open ring and take that page out to put it on a plan surface. It’s very convenient this way. Also I similarly punched out white pages and when I wasn’t able to completely annotate BNB or Amboss I would print that out and put it along relevant topic.

This is how my FA looks like. I gave colour coding to BNB (Blue), Amboss (Red) and Uworld (Green). It helps but if you are short on time you should avoid annotating, it’s very time consuming. In the end when I was short on time I started taking snaps of Uworld screen with Cam scanner and this way I made notes on my phone. So in a nutshell annotate only if you have time, but avoid because you will eventually won’t be able to reread what you have annotated. You won’t be even able to reread the parts of FA.

Feel free to contact me if you still have any confusion. I will always be available for help in this regard. I would love to help out my colleagues across whole Balochistan including from other colleges too QIMS, LMC, MMC and JMC.

Email : abdul.qahar.aqk@gmail.com
Twitter (A Qahar Kakar) : @Albendazolum
Facebook (A Qahar Kakar) : https://www.facebook.com/Drstrange.X0/

Abdul Qahar Khan Yasinzai

Thank you for your time and patience. 🙂

1 COMMENT

  1. Well done Mr Qahir ,Outstanding , i strongly encourge this artical for all the energetic Aspirants of Usmeli😊

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