I’m heading towards my last 12 weeks of my third year. There’s so much running through my mind right now. I take my Step 2 CS exam in a matter of weeks, and my Step 2 CK exam is only around the corner.
One thing that I highly recommend to any student in a similar situation is to make sure you finish the year strong. These core rotation grades will be part of your transcript for the rest of time. While the USMLE is probably of the utmost importance, you don’t want to forget to perform well during your final rotations. At this point most students have a clear idea of what residency they’d like to apply for, but it’s important to show up on time for rotations, and appear interested, even if it’s far from what you’ll be practicing. You want program directors to speak well of you to friends and acquaintances because you never know who they could possibly contact on your behalf.
Make sure you do have an adequate amount of time after the end of third year blocked off to study for your USMLE. I would suggest 4-6 weeks max since studying for the shelf exams are a good tool to keep you on track throughout the year. You may find because of this you need less time to study than you needed for Step 1.
Finally, I would definitely suggest some type of practice course for the USMLE. When you are taking an exam against a population of students taking review courses to prepare, sometimes not taking the course places you at a disadvantage. Good luck to all of those students studying for the Step!