What is USMLE?
USMLE is a screening test for the medical professionals and students who want to practice medicine in USA. USMLE full form stands for Unites States Medical Licensing Examination. Doctors and aspirants from all around the world can appear for USMLE.
Candidates who want to appear for USMLE exams, and if they belong to USA or Canada, then they are required to submit their registration through National Board of Medical Exam, NBME. For candidates outside USA and Canada, that channel will be ECFMG, Education Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates.
USMLE is a Three Step Examination:
1. USMLE Step 1
2. USMLE Step 2 CK (Clinical Knowledge) and CS (Clinical Science)
3. USMLE Step 3
USMLE Step 1:
Test of knowledge related to medical practice and science of medicine.
Eight hours test, 7 blocks of 280 multiple choice questions.
USMLE Step 2:
Test of knowledge in patience care and disease prevention under medical supervision.
USMLE Step 2 CK is a 9 hours test, with 318 questions.
Step 2 CS is done with standardised patients, trained to behave like real patient. There are total 12 patient, with 15 minutes timings for each of them.
USMLE Step 3:
Test of knowledge in patient management, diagnosis and prognosis. It is a 2-day test.
Day 1: seven-hour test with 233 questions
Day 2: 13 Computer Case Simulations, total 180 questions. Test duration is 9 hours.
The eligibility criteria for USMLE Step 1 and 2 is as follows:
Candidate must be enrolled in a Medical School that is listed in World Directory of Medical Schools.
For the candidates from outside USA and Canada, an ECFMG certification is required.
The candidate must fulfil all the eligibility criteria at the time of the examination.
Candidates can appear for Step 1 and Step 2 when they are still in medical school. In USA, it helps them choosing the right residency program going ahead.
The Eligibility Criteria for USMLE Step 3 is as follows:
Candidate must be a graduate from a medical school recognised by World Directory of Medical School, and possess an MD degree equivalent from USA or anywhere in the world.
Candidate must have passed USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 CK and CS exams.
USMLE Registration is done online. For Step 1 and step 2, international students who are not from USA and Canada should apply from ECFMG (Education Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates)
Students from USA and Canada apply from NBME, National Board of Medical Examiners.
USMLE Step 3 registration must be done through FSMB for all the students. FSMB stands Federation of State Medical Boards.
There are no fixed scores for USMLE exams to pass or qualify, but the higher your scores, better are your chances of landing a job or a program in a better state and better institution. USMLE Step 2 CS scores are not declared, they are just declared as pass / fail. The latest minimum qualifying USMLE scores for the USMLE steps are as below:
Step 1: 194
Step 2 CK: 209
Step 3: 196
The USMLE results are normally declared after three to four weeks after the day of the exam.
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