Are Your USMLE Scores Lower Than You Hoped?
Low USMLE Scores
The USMLE Step 1, USMLE Step 2 CK and USMLE Step 2 CS are the three exams required to become ECFMG Certified and move on into residency training. These exams are challenging and time-consuming to study for and take. It is no surprise that many residency candidates face difficulties while getting these exams completed with consequences that can affect how Program Directors view your application.
One of the most devastating feelings a residency candidate can have is finding out they received a low score on their USMLE Step 1 or USMLE Step 2 CK. It’s no surprise many residency applicants end up feeling frustrated, disappointed, or defeated. Low scores may limit some of your residency choices, such as which medical specialties you should consider, but if residency candidates with low scores work hard and improve the other components of their ERAS Applications, it is still possible to Match.
Strategies & Suggestions
- Pick medical specialties that are more flexible about low USMLE scores such as Psychiatry or Family Medicine
- Research residency programs carefully to ensure you qualify for their minimum passing score requirements
- Consider taking the USMLE Step 3
- Try to score higher on subsequent exams