USMLE FOR BEGINNERS 

 

What is the USMLE?

USMLE is the acronym for United States Medical Licensure Examination. It is governed by the NBME for American Medical Graduates (AMGs), and by the ECFMG, for the International Medical Graduates (IMGs).

Who is an AMG?

AMG is any medical graduate, who has graduated from any accredited medical school of the United States, irrespective of the nationality of the graduate.

Who is an IMG?

IMG is any medical graduate, who has graduated from any medical institute outside of the United States, irrespective of nationality of the graduate.

I.e. if there is an American national graduating from United Kingdom (just for example), the graduate will be called an IMG.

If there is a Pakistani student (just for example) graduating from a medical school in the USA, the student will be called an AMG.

Thus, AMG/IMG issue is NOT related to the nationality, but the medical school of the graduate.

Who needs to take the USMLE?

All AMGs and IMGs who wish to join any residency program in the United States, and to pursue a career in any field of medicine in the US, must take the USMLE exam, and get certified before he/she is allowed to practice.

OK, so what will be I examined of?

USMLE is a 3 step examination. Step 1, Step 2 CK and Step 2 CS are necessary for certification. Step 3 CCS is usually done after the internship (PGY-1 of residency).

Step 1 is a computer based examination, of 350 MCQs, it can be taken in different countries worldwide.

Step 2 CK is a computer based examination, of 400 MCQs. it can be taken in different countries worldwide.

Step 2 CS is the clinical/practical examination. It cannot be taken outside of the United States.

Step 3 CCS is a computer based examination, with simulated clinical situations and scenarios. It cannot be taken outside of the United States.

For more details on the examination content, and details, visit the USMLE website www.usmle.org.

IMGs should apply through ECFMG: www.ecfmg.org.

AMGs should apply through NBME: www.nbme.org.

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