About the Author

Dylan Eiger, MD/PhD Candidate

In 2016, Dylan Eiger graduated Cum Laude from Duke University with a BS in Chemistry with a concentration in Biochemistry. Matriculated in the MD/PhD Duke Medical Scientist Training Program in 2016, Dylan achieved honors in all clinical rotations and was accepted into Alpha Omega Alpha. He recently completed his PhD in Biochemistry in early 2022.

Developing Practical Clinical Competence During Clerkships

A group of medical students on clinical clerkships examining x-rays.


Clinical rotations, or clerkships, are crucial in medical education, bridging classroom knowledge to real-world patient care settings. During clerkships, medical students have the opportunity to develop and refine essential clinical skills under the guidance of experienced healthcare professionals. While much can be learned in the classroom, it's not until you...

Beyond the 3 p.m. Slump: Crafting a Personalized Study Routine in Medical School

A calendar with a stethoscope sitting on top of it signifying the study routine of a medical school student.


Entering medical school is an exciting milestone in every aspiring physician's journey. However, the transition from undergraduate studies to the rigorous demands of medical education can be daunting. In this comprehensive blog post, we will delve into the essential aspects of creating an effective study routine for medical school, also...

Are NBME Practice Exams a True Reflection of Shelf Exam Difficulty?

Medical school students taking a practice NBME to prepare for their shelf exams.


In medical education, shelf exams evaluate students' knowledge and clinical reasoning during core clinical clerkships. Administered by medical schools, often written by the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME), these pivotal exams determine students' readiness for clinical rotations and overall performance. Questions often arise about the correlation between NBME practice...

Choosing Your Specialty: Gaining Insights from Clinical Clerkships

A group of medical school students on their clinical clerkship.


Selecting a desired medical specialty marks a pivotal moment in a medical student's career. However, the process is intricate and evolves with factors throughout your academic journey. One of, if not the most important, contributors to this decision-making process is the exposure gained during clinical clerkships in medical school. In...

The Impact of Shelf Exam Performance on Residency Applications

A group of medical school students taking their shelf exam.


In the journey to residency, medical students' shelf exam performance holds significant weight in applications. Shelf exams, designed to assess students' knowledge and clinical reasoning in specific core clerkships, can play a pivotal role in shaping the narrative of a medical student's academic capabilities. In this article, we explore the...

Your Guide To Mastering the Art of Patient Presentations During Clinical Clerkships

A medical student presenting a patient on her clinical clerkship.


Clinical clerkships represent your transition from the classroom to the front lines of patient care. Central to this experience is the art and science of patient presentations—a skill that not only communicates the patient's condition but also reflects your depth of knowledge, critical thinking, and ability to collaborate with the...

Balancing Act: Managing Research Responsibilities During Clinical Rotations

Medical School students participating in a research opportunity during their clinical rotations.


Your journey through medical school is marked by crucial milestones, and arguably the most pivotal phase is your time spent in the hospital and clinic. These hands-on experiences in different healthcare settings provide a bridge between classroom knowledge and practical application. However, integrating research into clinical rotations enhances the educational...

How to Prepare for Residency Match Day

An excited residency applicant learning that she matched for residency.


The day you have been waiting for has finally arrived! You have spent years training to become a doctor. And in just a few days or weeks, you will learn on Match Day where you will spend the next few years of your life as a practicing physician in residency....

2023 Guide to Interpreting NBME Practice Exams for Step 1 and Step 2

A medical school student taking an NBME practice test for USMLE prep in a living room in front of a desktop computer.


Almost all students preparing for the USMLE Step 1 or Step 2 will take at least one (hopefully more!) practice test leading up to test day. While various practice tests are available to assess your performance, many students will turn directly to the NBME practice tests. In this post, we...

Preparing for the USMLE Step 1 as a Pass/Fail Exam

A medical school student holding a notebook and looking at a laptop while preparing for the USMLE Step 1 as a pass/fail exam.


The time has come for you to prepare for the USMLE Step 1! This can be an exciting but also nerve-racking time. However, with the recent change that the USMLE Step 1 is now a purely pass/fail examination. You can find respite in knowing that all you have to do...

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