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Avoiding Resource Doubt: Tips for USMLE success


One of the most important lessons for studying for the USMLE:

To get a great score, you must commit to a few resources and never look back until those resources are mastered.

Imagine a farmer who tills a field and starts to plant carrots. Half way down the first row he wonders if carrots will be profitable in the coming harvest. His doubts muddy his goal, and in fear he decides to plant potatoes. As soon as the first seed hits the soil, the farmer wonders, “what if there is a great potato famine this year?” In his doubts, he tills the ground again and again, always finding reasons to abandon this crop or that. Harvest time finds this man with nothing to show for his self-defeating efforts. Bankrupt and hungry, the farmer recognizes his mistakes too late.

This small story seeks to drive home the point that the biggest mistake people make when studying for the USMLE is doubting the resources they are using. They start studying committed to one or two resources, only to become frustrated by their slow progress. Disappointed and discouraged by low practice scores, these students in their tired state doubt their chosen resources and throw them to the wind. They use their non-study time or worse, their dedicated study time, to search Google and Facebook for the one resource that will make all the difference. After hours of searching they finally believe they have found the new materials that will help them achieve their goal score.

Unfortunately the cycle repeats itself: doubt settles in, and the chosen resources are again abandoned. Copious hours are drained in search of something else. These students are never settled, never committed to something, and they never accomplish much.

Students jump from book to book, video set to video set, question bank to question bank always in search of the “perfect” resource that will get them the perfect score. But alas no such perfect resource exists. No resource contains all the information that could be tested on the USMLE, but you don’t need to know everything in order to score well. Remember: to get a great score you must commit to a few resources and never look back until those resources are mastered.

Here at Dr. Jamal’s USMLE Notes we suggest the following three resources:

1. FIRST AID for USMLE

2. UWORLD QBANK

3. Dr. Jamal’s Notes

Study these and never, ever doubt. They will lead you to a great score.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions about USMLE preparation.

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