5 Biggest Mistakes Students Make While Studying for USMLE Step 1

Studying for the USMLE Step 1 exam can be daunting. There’s a lot to know, understand and memorize. So, there’s always a penchant for students to make mistakes. But don’t worry, mistakes happen. Luckily, we’re here to outline some of those mistakes and help you choose the right path.

Know that there’s no perfect path or magic formula for studying for this exam. Different styles work for different people. So, let’s break down what not to do for these tests.

Let’s get to it!

1.  Using another person’s studying style verbatim

So, there’s nothing wrong with using another person for inspiration for your reading style, but trying to copy them without tweaking them to what works for you may be bad.

For example, take a student who does well in test reads by waking up by 4 am to make notes from the resources on CanadaQBank and read them. You see them and copy them without considering that you work at night and sometimes close later. So, waking up as early as 4 am may even be detrimental to your concentration. So, now you’re awake at 4 am, lack sleep, grump, and not making use of the right resources, you’ll end up with the short end of the stick.

Instead, you could look for times in the day when you’re well-rested and calm and use it to make notes and read them. Thus, it’s important to know yourself.

2.  Using too many resources

Information is power, but too much information can be dangerous for your exams.

For instance, numerous resources are available for the USMLE, such as flashcards and videos, on CanadaQBank. However, the abundance of options can trigger fear of missing out, which may result in bad behaviours such as rearranging a well-structured study schedule to accommodate a new resource and subsequently falling behind.

When it comes to content review and QBanks, it is better to thoroughly study a few top resources rather than skimming through many resources. Devoting agoradesign.it adequate time to a comprehensive review of only the upper limb is more beneficial than going through numerous additional resources superficially. Similarly, completing the CanadaQBank question bank judiciously is more advantageous than hastily reviewing two or more QBanks. Thus, it is recommended to create a plan using a fixed number of dependable resources and adhere to it. The watchword is to keep the plan simple.

3.  Not spending the right time reviewing explanations

While finding the ideal amount of time to spend reviewing each explanation can be a challenging task, it is crucial to strike a balance. Spending too little time can cause you to overlook crucial info while spending too much time can disrupt your study schedule. Every student’s ideal review time will vary, so it’s essential to discover how much time is required to conduct an efficient and effective review.

Students’ most common mistake is spending too much time during their dedicated study period. Although it may seem counterintuitive, many students devote ten or more minutes reviewing each explanation. That’s too long and could take up to 7 hours to check a 50-question block!

Once you have a solid foundation for questions where you immediately know the correct answer and why the other choices are wrong, quickly reviewing the explanation would leave more time for reviewing more demanding questions. This strategy allows you to search for new or challenging points to understand. If you’re still struggling to find the ideal review time, consider setting aside twice the time it takes you to complete the questions. For example, for a one-hour CanadaQBank practice question, spend roughly two hours reviewing the explanations.

4.  Not focusing on your weakness

Each student has a topic or subject that proves challenging to them, which is why students who achieve the highest scores are those who confront their weak points and comprehend them. Therefore, if you want to score well on the exam, you must overcome your shortcomings.

You can develop flashcards for the concepts that you struggle with. Then, you can review the flashcard deck regularly to become familiar with these concepts. For instance, if you’re bad at anatomy, you can focus on the anatomy questions on CanadaQBank rather than the subjects you’re better at.

5.  Not doing practice assessments

To perform well on the actual exam, it’s essential to stay composed and avoid any unexpected surprises. Full-length practice tests can help boost your confidence, acclimate you to the format, and assess the time required to complete each section.

Furthermore, these evaluations can provide a preliminary indication of the score you may get on the real exam. This feedback can help you determine if you’re ready to take the test or need to allocate more time for preparation. Therefore, to prepare adequately for the exam, take as many full-length practice tests as possible.

Also, students that tend to prioritize their studies over other aspects of their lives while pursuing their goals, often leading to burnout and a decrease in exam scores. To prevent such consequences, it is crucial to maintain a healthy work-life balance.

To avoid burnout during your USMLE Step 1 preparation, there are several things you can do. Firstly, decide on a time to stop studying for the day and plan a fun activity to do afterward. Secondly, take frequent breaks using techniques like the Pomodoro method. Additionally, prioritize a healthy diet and exercise regularly, and establish a fixed sleep schedule.


Mistakes such as not taking care of yourself, avoiding your weak areas, and using too many resources are among some of the biggest issues with students studying for their USMLE Step 1. Identifying your potential mistakes is the first step to getting a good score in your exams.

The best way to prepare for the USMLE Step 1 is to study hard and get plenty of practice questions. It is also important to stay calm and focused during the exam. If you have any questions or concerns, speak with your mentor or instructor, and take advantage of our QBank at CanadaQBank.

USMLE Step 1 Exam Dates in 2024: What You Need to Know

Whether you’re a first-time test taker or a seasoned pro, you need to know the ins and outs of the USMLE Step 1 exam dates in 2024.

In this article, we’ll answer all of your most pressing questions so that you can make the best possible decision about when to take your exam.

We’ll cover everything from eligibility requirements to exam registration fees, and we’ll also let you know what to do if you need to change your test date.

So whether you’re just starting to study or you’re counting down the days until test day, read on for all the information you need about the USMLE Step 1 exam dates in 2024!

Eligibility to Take Step 1?

Are you wondering if you are eligible to take the USMLE Step 1 exam? Wonder no more! The eligibility requirements are listed below for your convenience.

In order to be eligible to take the Step 1 exam, you must meet all of the following requirements:

  • You must be a U.S. or Canadian citizen, a permanent resident, or have met the requirements to be an international student.
  • You must have completed a course in a U.S. or Canadian medical school that is deemed equivalent to the first year of a U.S. or Canadian medical school curriculum.
  • You must have completed at least one year of clinical training in a U.S. or Canadian hospital or institution accredited by the ACGME or LCME (this clinical training must be completed by the time you take Step 1).

How to Register for Step 1?

You can register for the Step 1 exam by visiting the USMLE website. You will need to create an account on the website and provide some basic information.

Once you have created your account, you can register for the exam by clicking on ” Register for a Test.” You will then be prompted to provide information about your test center, test date, and payment information.

You can also register for the Step 1 exam by completing the paper registration form and mailing it to the USMLE Secretariat. The address is included on the form.

You should register for the Step 1 exam as far in advance as possible, as space is limited at test centers, and availability is on a first-come, first-served basis.

CanadaQBank is here to help you prepare for your exams.

How Far in Advance Can I Schedule My Step 1 Exam?

Planning ahead is key when it comes to the USMLE Step 1 exam, and you can schedule your exam up to six months in advance. This means that if you’re planning on taking the exam in 2024, you can register for a date before the end of 2023! To do so, all you need to do is go online and key in your information. Once you’ve registered, you’ll be able to access your personalized timeline and keep track of important dates, such as when your application was received or when your results will be released. Keeping these dates (especially the exam date!) in mind will help ensure you have plenty of time to prepare.

How Much Does It Cost to Register for Step 1?

Alright, so the big question: how much does it cost to register for Step 1? The answer is it depends! USMLE registration fees vary depending on the country and test center. Generally speaking, you can expect to pay a standard fee of around $600-700 USD. If you’re taking your exam outside of North America, you may need to pay an additional international test delivery surcharge.

Don’t worry if you find out you can’t afford the registration fee—plenty of resources are available to help minimize costs. You may be eligible for a discounted cost or even a fee waiver if you satisfy certain criteria. Either way, feel free to reach out to your medical school or the NBME website for more information on these programs.

How Can I Change My Step 1 Exam Date?

If you decide to change your Step 1 Exam date, you can do so after your registration is complete. You may request a change in date up to 30 days before the day of your planned exam. You will need to contact the USMLE Step 1 testing center and inform them that you would like to make a change. When making the request, be sure to provide any applicable supporting documentation.

You can expect that any associated fees or charges related to the change will be applied at the discretion of the testing center. Depending on when you make the request and if there is availability on other dates, it’s possible that no additional fee will be required. Be sure to check with your testing center for their specific policies around changing Step 1 Exam dates.

When Will I Get My Step 1 Results

Now, you’re probably wondering when you’ll get your Step 1 results. Once the exam is over, your scores will be reported to the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) and available to you within four weeks. If you’ve taken your exam during the pandemic, NBME officials are working to speed up the process, so your results may arrive sooner than usual.

NBME will then send an official notification to whatever medical schools and residency programs you have registered with. In most cases, they will be able to view your scores within two days of NBME obtaining them. Be aware that it can take up to five business days for programs to officially receive scores in their systems, depending on their location.

It’s important to remember that even though you’ll get your results right away, you won’t be able to find out what score you got until after all medical schools have received it. So don’t start celebrating—or worrying—until all of the scores have been sent out!

FAQs about USMLE Step 1

Let’s answer some of the most commonly asked questions regarding the USMLE Step 1 exam in 2024!

When can I take the USMLE Step 1 exam?

You can take the USMLE Step 1 exam any time between January and December 2024.

Who is eligible to take Step 1?

Any medical student who has completed the first two years of medical school is eligible to take the USMLE Step 1.

How do I register for Step 1?

To register for the USMLE Step 1, you must create an account on the official USMLE website, provide proof of eligibility, and complete a registration form. You will then be prompted to pay a registration fee and schedule your desired exam date.

How far in advance can I schedule my Step 1 exam?

You can schedule your Step 1 exam up to three months in advance.

How much does it cost to register for Step 1?

The cost of registering for the USMLE Step 1 is $1,295 USD as of March 2021.

How can I change my Step 1 exam date?

You may change your scheduled exam date up to two times without incurring additional fees.

Will my exams be affected by COVID-19?

Likely, many aspects of taking your USMLE exams, such as test centers or policies, may be modified due to the COVID-19 pandemic. So, please consult with your school’s administration or registrar office for specific information.

When will I get my results?

Your results will usually be available within four weeks after taking the test.


The USMLE Step 1 is one of the most important exams a medical student will ever take. It is the first step in becoming a licensed physician, and it is essential to prepare for the exam well.

The best way to prepare for the exam is to study hard and get plenty of practice questions. It is also important to stay calm and focused during the exam. If you have any questions or concerns, be sure to speak with your mentor or instructor. Please take advantage of our QBank at CanadaQBank.

USMLE Step 1 Good luck with your USMLE Step 1 exam!