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5 Best USMLE STEP 1 Prep Courses & Study Material [Updated 2020]

 

The USMLE STEP 1, in simple words, is a one-day computerized assessment that tests whether you understand and can apply important concepts of the fundamental sciences into medicinal practices. STEP 1 is often regarded as the hardest examination and is much more detailed than the other examinations throughout the medical school. Thus, having the best USMLE STEP 1 prep course by your side is of paramount importance. Therefore, we here at TrumpLearning, along with a team of 10 experts, have curated this list of the 5 best USMLE STEP 1 prep courses. Let’s jump right into it!

 

5 Best USMLE STEP 1 Prep Courses & Study Material

  1. USMLE STEP 1 Course [Lecturio]
  2. USMLE STEP 1 Course Based on First Aid 2020 Edition [SmashUSMLE]
  3. USMLE STEP 1 Course [Pass Program]
  4. USMLE® STEP 1 Prep [Kaplan Course]
  5. USMLE STEP 1 Board Review Questions and Practice Tests [Board Vitals]

 

1. USMLE STEP 1 Course [Lecturio]

 

There is a reason why Lecturio features right at the top of this list of the best USMLE Step 1 prep courses; and the reason being that it boasts of an eclectic mix of educators from some of the most prestigious universities. And another feather in the cap is that as a learner, you have FREE access to some of their resources without plugging in your credit card. So let’s take a look at their FREE and Premium offering.

 

Free Account

The free version of the USMLE STEP 1 prep course comes without any obligation, and no credit card is required. However, it doesn’t offer complete features. What this version of the USMLE STEP 1 prep course offers is:

 

  • 250 Short, concise and easy-to-follow video lectures (20 hours)
  • 1,000 Quiz questions that pop up during video lectures
  • Spaced repetition quiz tells you when and what you need to repeat
  • Lecturio book matcher matches your medical textbook to Lecturio videos
  • iOS & Android App to access Lecturio anywhere and anytime (including offline)

 

Premium Account

The premium account offers you unlimited access and all the functionalities of the free account along with the following extra features:

 

  • 550+ Short, concise and easy-to-follow video lectures (515 hours)
  • 18,000+ Quiz questions that pop up during video lectures
  • 3,400+ USMLE® STEP 1 & 2 CK Question bank with explanations
  • COMLEX® Level 1 & 2 Question bank with explanations
  • Exam Interface including tutor, test and timer mode
  • Bookmarks to customize your USMLE STEP 1 prep course curriculum

 

Reviews by student:

Since getting Lecturio Premium, it’s been amazing. I’ve learned a whole bunch of new things and can’t wait to get through to the other courses. Lecturio is a very beneficial online learning program; it’s so interesting as it’s interactive and visually stimulating, with no boredom from long texts, nor any large PDF-like time-consuming books. I really like it, and I would definitely recommend others to start using it for their studies too!!

Azizah

 

2. USMLE STEP 1 Course Based on First Aid 2020 Edition [SmashUSMLE]

 

The Smash USMLE STEP 1 prep course offers you 3 main membership plans, namely the 3-month plan, the 6-month plan, and the lifetime 120-month plan. Some of the key features included in 3-month plan are –

  • STEP 1 review course
  • Over 250 hours of USMLE lectures
  • Access to USMLE question bank that includes 2300 + practice USMLE questions
  • USMLE flashcards to help you retain learning
  • Ability to track video lecture progress
  • USMLE study guide
  • Free USMLE STEP 1 prep book
  • Prep Guidebook with calendar
  • Personal consultation with an MD (worth $200)
  • Anytime access to personal advisor

 

However, the 6-month plan offers you access to an extra feature of Exclusive SMART MD VIP membership.

 

The lifetime membership provides you another two additional features of NBME performance analysis and test-taking strategies. Further, the Smash USMLE course platform offers you Question Bank membership plans for 1-month, 3-months, 6-months, and 12 months with 2200 STEP 1 questions. Except in the 1-month plan, the other 3-course question bank plans will allow you to reset your question bank twice.
 

Reviews by student:

Smash usmle is an excellent course. The integrated classes are the best for me, when we talk about different high yield topics and how we can integrate to the daily q bank schedule. Thank you for the passion to teach us.

Maria Angelica

 

3. USMLE STEP 1 Course [Pass Program]

 

The Pass Program USMLE test prep course boasts of a 90% success rate, and a whopping 121 NBME score points increase on an average. This USMLE STEP 1 prep course will help you review the basic medical sciences in an organ system-based format. Further, you’ll be taught how to apply them to clinical situations. You will be doing a few randomly chosen USMLE or COMLEX questions every day. The learning is not passive, and classes are taught in a very interactive manner, with students being encouraged to ask questions. Every day, one topic will be chosen to illustrate one broad concept and a few small ones. Each student of the USMLE test prep course will further receive weekly one-on-one sessions. The USMLE test prep course is offered in 3 formats, namely, live onsite, live online, and on-demand. We will be talking about digitally available classes only.

 

The live-online USMLE test prep course offers you a 5-week program, an 8-week program, and a 12-week program. The on-demand videos are available at a one-time fee payment.

 

Some of the key topics you will study in the USMLE STEP 1 prep course are:

 

  • Membrane Physiology and Second Messenger
  • Electrolyte Physiology and EKG Physiology
  • Neuromuscular Physiology and Pathology
  • Vascular Physiology and Pathology
  • Endocrine Physiology and Pathology
  • Gastrointestinal Physiology and Pathology

 

Reviews by student:

I love this program.. The best in the country!

Sajith Silva

 

4. USMLE® STEP 1 Prep [Kaplan Course]

 

The Kaplan USMLE STEP 1 prep course strategy revolves around breaking down your question bank into small chunks and building up your score gradually. Kaplan offers you three main preparation methods.

 

Qbank

It contains 2,800 exam-like questions with strategy sections and a test-like interface. Some of the features offered in this delivery of the USMLE STEP 1 study material are:

 

  • Answer explanations
  • 3D BioDigital images and animations
  • Instructive videos by Dr. Armando
  • 2 full-length simulated exams

 

On-Demand

Allowing you to customize your study schedule with videos, quizzes, and content review. Some of the features offered in this method of the USMLE STEP 1 prep course delivery are:

 

  • 220+ hours of on-demand video lectures
  • Qbank with 2,800+ USMLE-style questions
  • 2,600 warm-up and post-test questions
  • 2 simulated exams, 1 diagnostic exam

 

Instructor-Led

The instructor-led classes are further divided into live online classes and live on-location lectures. In this article, we’ll talk only about the live online classes. Some of the important features offered in this method of the course delivery are:

 

  • 270+ hours of live online lectures with top faculty
  • 220+ hours of on-demand video lectures
  • Personal medical advising
  • Qbank with 2,800+ USMLE-style questions
  • 2,600 warm-up and post-test questions
  • 2 simulated exams, 1 diagnostic exam

 

Reviews by student:

The Kaplan Medical course had a significant impact on my scores, but more importantly it helped me develop a more profound and comprehensive understanding of the various fields in the basic sciences.

Suman R.

 

5. USMLE STEP 1 Board Review Questions and Practice Tests [Board Vitals]

 

The course allows you to gain access to more than 2700 USMLE STEP 1 board review practice questions. The questions have been specifically written to simulate the complexity and time of the real questions on the exam. The USMLE STEP 1 question bank mimics the exam content outline for the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) and National Board of Medical Examiners® (NBME®) USMLE STEP 1 Exam. There are 4 primary course subscriptions available to you. A free plan, a 1-month Cram plan, a 3-month Prepare plan, and a 6-month Master plan.

 

Each of the plans, including the free ones, allows you to customize practice tests by subject, track your progress with advanced analytics and reports, time your test to simulate real test conditions, and compare your progress against the national average.

 

Key topic covered in the course include:

 

  • Musculoskeletal System
  • Respiratory System
  • Cardiovascular System
  • Gastrointestinal System
  • Renal/Urinary System
  • Reproductive System

 

Detailed explanations and evidence-based rationales with every question have also been provided. The best thing about the Board Vitals USMLE course is that with every paid membership, a vaccine is offered on your behalf to a child in need, which seems to be a very noble gesture.

 

Reviews by student:

“I am enjoying BoardVitals and feel much more prepared for the Family Medicine boards because of you. Thank you!

Dr. Amy Cottrell

 

Popular USMLE STEP 1 Prep Books

Here we are providing you with some of the most popular USMLE STEP 1 prep books. These USMLE STEP 1 prep books have been tried and tested by thousands of students over the years and have helped them realize their dreams.

 

First Aid for the USMLE STEP 1 2020, Thirtieth edition

USMLE STEP 1 Lecture Notes 2020: 7-Book Set (Kaplan Test Prep)

USMLE STEP 1 Qbook (USMLE Prep)

Crush STEP 1: The Ultimate USMLE STEP 1 Review

USMLE STEP 1 Made Ridiculously Simple

 

Conclusion

These were some of the best USMLE STEP 1 prep courses and USMLE STEP 1 study material to take a look at if you plan to ace the exam. While it is possible to pass the exam by studying on your own, having a dedicated course helps you increase your scores significantly. Also, we recommend you not to waste a lot of time choosing the course. Just pick one and start with whatever feels comfortable. It is essential to spend time in preparation and not making choices. With these words, we take your leave and promise to see you in the next article with some more awesome content.

 

Best USMLE Step 1 Prep Courses Study Material Reviewed by 10 USMLE Prep Experts 4.5
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