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drhedgehog: I Passed CS...I am a happy hedgehog
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发信人: drhedgehog (麦地小刺猬), 信区: MedicalCareer
标 题: I Passed CS...I am a happy hedgehog:)
发信站: BBS 未名空间站 (Wed Apr 23 15:26:39 2008)

I felt pretty good about my CS test taken one day ago and hope the result
will concur in several weeks.---3/6/08

I am so happy that I passed CS.---4/23/08

I benefited the most from the FA wit “Passing does not need perfection”.
Try really hard to understand it if you are a perfectionist like me, for it
will definitely influence your way of preparation. In fact, within the given
time frame in CS test, efficiency and relative completeness outweigh
perfection. Besides, your compassion, your calmness and even your smile will
inevitably affect your score.

“Practice, Prioritize, and Protocol” --The 3Ps best summarize my
experience of preparation for CS. Prioritization of your questions for the
patients is the key for good time management, and repeated timed practice of
simulated cases is the way to approach it. In addition, a good generalized
protocol for all possible cases will enable you to breeze through the test.

To excel in the test, you first need to know the test and yourself very well
. I think the CS test is a relatively easy test for a well-prepared mind.
The general information chapters about CS in FA, UW and USMLE CD will help
you understand what the test is like. In addition, live exam experiences can
be of great help. How did people pass? Read it, think about it, and apply
it. Listed below are some valuable experiences from people in this forum who
have passed the test.

Jimmyzhang http://www.mitbbs.com/article/MedicalCareer/18977259_3.html
Yeye http://www.mitbbs.com/pc/pccon.php?id=1943&nid=28004&s=all
Zbbh’s friendhttp://www.mitbbs.com/article_t1/MedicalCareer/30855200_30883556_1.html
Gira555 http://www.mitbbs.com/article/MedicalCareer/22762223_3.html
Madoc http://www.mitbbs.com/article/MedicalCareer/25148245_3.html
Heartdoc2007 http://www.mitbbs.com/article/MedicalCareer/24773560_3.html

The time needed for the test preparation depends on how proficient your
spoken English is. The CS has two big components for scoring: ICE (
Integrated Clinical Encounter) score including DG (Data-Gathering) and PN (
Patient Note), and COM (Communication) score including IPS (Inter-Personal
Skills) and SEP (Spoken English Proficiency). Only SEP cannot be easily
improved in a short period of time. I spend one and a half month on this
test. The first half month I was also reviewing CK in the same time. I got
really serious in the last month.

To get well prepared for the test, selecting the right materials is the
basis. In my opinion, FA plus UW is enough. Kaplan 5 day audio and website http://csprotocol.blogspot.com/ are good but not necessary, if you don’t have extra time. Mini-cases in FA are essential, but you probably won’t be able to appreciate its beauty unless you are really into it. UW is a good supplemental material, for it contains a more complete coverage of cases as well as videos for time-efficient PE. 10 out of my 12 test cases were covered well in these two materials, while the other 2 cases are manageable by your common medical knowledge and your confidence. Don’t be panic.

Second, it is not exaggerated to stress again and again how important to
practice, practice and practice! Try to find a good live partner who has the
similar time schedule. I was lucky to find a good one from www. usmleforum.
com . We tried our best to mimic the test environment as real as possible
such as using real stethoscope, draping with a shawl, triggering jerks by
pen, and wearing a gown if you pretend to be a SP. You won’t realize how “
time consuming” it is to untie the gown and tie the gown until you face the
real thing. So don’t just imagine each step while practicing. Do it!!!
Time it!!! (Do buy a timer). Another important reminder is that try to spend
more time practicing on the beginning and the end of the encounter. My
little trick not to forget counseling the important topics is that make a
RLQ box on the scratch paper and write down the abbreviation of the topic (X
for safe sex, A for alcohol, Sm for smoking…) into that box while taking
the history. Don’t underestimate the patient notes. I neglected it at the
beginning of the preparation so that I was so anxious to make up for it in
the last week. I like the FA style and I used it in my test. Even though the
bullet type is straightforward and simple, it doesn’t fit my taste.:) No
matter which style you use, the main thing is to have a clear mind and write
it down in an organized and legible way. As to PE, just be “focused” and

Third, the appearance is important. I did my first makeup in my life that
day! It is quite risky but I made it. The light makeup did make you look
better and professional. Thanks to ericusa, flysine, lancet2008 and
dendrite88. I took your suggestion and wore a ponytail. However, I saw
female AMGs all let their long hair down that day. Anyway, I still prefer
ponytail since it is neat and convenient to do PE. In addition to showing
consideration (make SP comfortable in every detailed way) and confidence,
smile brightly when appropriate.

Last but not least, hmm…this is the same sentence I used it in my Step1
exam experience. Well, again, try to have a good sleep. Please, please book
a good hotel. To save money, we had a big sacrifice of “sleepless night in
LA” at that motel. Quarrels, noisy music and sirens challenged our nerves!
We moved to another hotel the very next morning without hesitation.

Thanks to everyone who helped me through this journey, specially my hubby
who always gave my hard time on my pronunciation and grammar during practice
. Even though I envy those couples that had fun during practice, I do know
without the push, I won’t master this monster so easily.

Well, it is such a big relief!!! I sincerely wish everyone best of the luck
on CS!


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