Step 1 assesses whether you understand and can apply important concepts of the sciences basic to the practice of medicine, with special emphasis on principles and mechanisms underlying health, disease, and modes of therapy. Step 1 ensures mastery of not only the sciences that provide a foundation for the safe and competent practice of medicine in the present, but also the scientific principles required for maintenance of competence through lifelong learning. Step 1 is constructed according to an integrated content outline that organizes basic science material along two dimensions: system and process.
It is an eight-hour computer-based exam consisting of 336 multiple-choice questions (MCQs) divided into seven blocks each consisting of 48 questions.
While not recommended by the creators of the USMLE, the Step 1 score is frequently used in medical residency as one of many factors considered by residency programs in selecting applicants.
If you pass a Step, you are not allowed to retake it.
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