What is the USMLE?
What is it consisted of?
- The USMLE (United States Medical Licensing Exam) is a 3 step examination to assess a physician’s medical knowledge and clinical skills. It is sponsored by the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) and the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME).
- The USMLE is required for pursuing medical residencies in the US. For the purpose of fellowship application, it is required for certain programs. Since the application process may change from year to year, it is advised that candidates directly contact programs of interest during their cycle of application.
What is it consisted of?
- Step 1: This examination focuses on basic science concepts and pathophysiology of diseases and treatments. It is a one day examination composed of 308 multiple-choice questions divided into 7 blocks of 44 items.
- Step 2 CK: Step 2 CK focuses on application of medical knowledge in the clinical setting. It is a one day written examination composed of various blocks, with no more than 355 items in total.
- Both Steps 1 and 2 CK are one-day examinations, in which 60 minutes are allotted for completion of each block of test items. On the test day, examinees have a minimum of 45 minutes of break time and a 15 minute optional tutorial. The amount of time available for breaks may be increased by finishing a block of test items or the optional tutorial before the allotted time expires.
- Step 2 CS: This examination is carried out using standardized patients to assess one’s clinical skills in history taking, physical examination, and communication with patients and colleagues.
- Step 3: This is a two-day and the final exam in the USMLE. It is to assess one’s ability to provide independent and longitudinal medical care in the ambulatory setting. The first day lasts approximately 6-7 hours, which includes includes 256 multiple-choice items divided into 6 blocks (60 minutes each) of 42 to 43 items; 60 minutes are allotted for completion of each block of test items. There is a 45-minute break time and a 5-minute optional tutorial.
- Day 2 has approximately 9 hours of testing, which includes a 5-minute optional tutorial followed by 6 blocks of 33 items (45 minutes for each block) The day also includes a 7-minute CCS tutorial, followed by 13 case simulations (10 or 20 minutes each). A minimum of 45 minutes is available for break time.
- please visit the official website usmle.org for full exam details, dates, and registration process.