USMLE STEP 12019-04-29T23:09:45+00:00
USMLE STEP 1

USMLE Step 1 Tutoring

The USMLE, or, United States Medical Licensing Exam, is a blanket term that refers to a set of three standardized medical exams. Acting as a stopgap between milestones during medical training, the USMLE is intended to assess the knowledge of medical students and ultimately decide if you should be allowed to proceed in your medical studies and anticipated career.

USMLE Step 1 is generally regarded as the most important and most challenging test of the 3 USMLE exams. Considered the primary factor in residency interview selection and residency matching, Step 1 has definitely earned its title as a high stakes exam.

USMLE Step 1 tests student knowledge of anatomy, behavioral sciences, biochemistry, microbiology, pathology, pharmacology, physiology, and interdisciplinary topics such as nutrition, genetics, and aging.

Scored on a scale of 120 to 300, the lowest passing score for USMLE Step 1 is 194 (as of Jan 1st 2018).A strong Step 1 score is considered >245 and an excellent score is >260. The national average score for USMLE Step 1 (as of 2017) is 220±21.

USMLE Step 1 is a one-day exam administered over an 8-hour testing session. There are seven 60-minute blocks of 40 questions each.

Who Needs a Step 1 Tutor?


At Elite Medical Prep we acknowledge that not every medical student needs a USMLE tutor. However, we strongly urge students to read through the following  situations in which tutoring is recommended. If you identify with one or more of these situations, we highly advise you to contact us as soon as possible for support.


Students who know or have been told that they are poor standardized test takers should consider a USMLE tutor.

-Students with weak MCAT scores should consider a USMLE tutor. MCAT scores have the strongest independent correlation of any factor to USMLE scores. If a student has scored below 509 on the MCAT (30 with the old scale), they are on the weaker end of the MCAT score spectrum among medical students. Some of this weakness is intrinsic (like body morphology), but much of the difficulty is due to poor habits which can be corrected with the help of a Step 1 tutor.

-Students who are more than 20 points away from passing USMLE Step 1 on their first attempt and have 8 or fewer weeks left to study should strongly consider a USMLE tutor. A 20 point gap is difficult to bridge, and presumably, a student should be at or above passing when they are entering their dedicated Step 1 study period.

-Students who have previously failed USMLE Step 1 and are still more than 10 points from passing with 8 or fewer weeks left before their next attempt should strongly consider a USMLE tutor.

-Students who are more than 15 points below the average score for medical students who matched into their preferred field of medicine should consider a USMLE tutor. This is particularly true for students who come from foreign or Caribbean medical schools, and newer schools (less than 25 years in existence). Residency match decisions weigh heavily on USMLE scores, but also on the academic pedigree and familiarity of previous students from their medical school. Alumni links matter!

-Students who struggle to stick to a schedule and/or study plan should consider a USMLE tutor. Falling behind a little bit on a study plan is quite normal. But being unable to follow through on at least 70% of the intended amount of work for a particular day either indicates poor planning (i.e. too much to do), poor focus (i.e. difficulty with maintaining attention), poor study habits, or a combination of these.

-Students who have a general feeling of unpreparedness and/or high anxiety regarding their test date should consider a USMLE tutor.

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USMLE Step 1

The USMLE, or, United States Medical Licensing Exam, is a blanket term that refers to a set of three standardized medical exams. Acting as a stopgap between milestones during medical training, the USMLE is intended to assess the knowledge of medical students and ultimately decide if you should be allowed to proceed in your medical studies and anticipated career.

USMLE Step 1 is generally regarded as the most important and most challenging test of the 3 USMLE exams. Considered the primary factor in residency interview selection and residency matching, Step 1 has definitely earned its title as a high stakes exam.

USMLE Step 1 tests student knowledge of anatomy, behavioral sciences, biochemistry, microbiology, pathology, pharmacology, physiology, and interdisciplinary topics such as nutrition, genetics, and aging.

Scored on a scale of 120 to 300, the lowest passing score for USMLE Step 1 is 194 (as of Jan 1st 2018).A strong Step 1 score is considered >245 and an excellent score is >260. The national average score for USMLE Step 1 (as of 2017) is 220±21.

USMLE Step 1 is a one-day exam administered over an 8-hour testing session. There are seven 60-minute blocks of 40 questions each.

At Elite Medical Prep we acknowledge that not every medical student needs a USMLE tutor. However, we strongly urge students to read through the following situations in which tutoring is recommended. If you identify with one or more of these situations, we highly advise you to contact us as soon as possible for support.


⁃Students who know or have been told that they are poor standardized test takers should consider a USMLE tutor.

⁃Students with weak MCAT scores should consider a USMLE tutor. MCAT scores have the strongest independent correlation of any factor to USMLE scores. If a student has scored below 509 on the MCAT (30 with the old scale), they are on the weaker end of the MCAT score spectrum among medical students. Some of this weakness is intrinsic (like body morphology), but much of the difficulty is due to poor habits which can be corrected with the help of a Step 1 tutor.

⁃Students who are more than 20 points away from passing USMLE Step 1 on their first attempt and have 8 or fewer weeks left to study should strongly consider a USMLE tutor. A 20 point gap is difficult to bridge, and presumably, a student should be at or above passing when they are entering their dedicated Step 1 study period.

⁃Students who have previously failed USMLE Step 1 and are still more than 10 points from passing with 8 or fewer weeks left before their next attempt should strongly consider a USMLE tutor.

⁃Students who are more than 15 points below the average score for medical students who matched into their preferred field of medicine should consider a USMLE tutor. This is particularly true for students who come from foreign or Caribbean medical schools, and newer schools (less than 25 years in existence). Residency match decisions weigh heavily on USMLE scores, but also on the academic pedigree and familiarity of previous students from their medical school. Alumni links matter!

⁃Students who struggle to stick to a schedule and/or study plan should consider a USMLE tutor. Falling behind a little bit on a study plan is quite normal. But being unable to follow through on at least 70% of the intended amount of work for a particular day either indicates poor planning (i.e. too much to do), poor focus (i.e. difficulty with maintaining attention), poor study habits, or a combination of these.

⁃Students who have a general feeling of unpreparedness and/or high anxiety regarding their test date should consider a USMLE tutor.