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Enhanced security policies at CSEC test centers

Posted: March 29, 2017

Enhanced security policies will take effect in all Clinical Skills Evaluation Collaboration (CSEC) test centers beginning April 4, 2017. The enhanced security procedures are being conducted to inspect for electronic devices.

The USMLE Step 2 Clinical Skills (CS) examination is administered at CSEC test centers in Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Houston, and Philadelphia.

Beginning April 4, 2017, CSEC administrators will conduct inspections of all eyeglasses, jewelry, and other accessories.

  • All examinees will be required to remove eyeglasses for visual inspection by the test center administrators. These inspections will be brief and will be performed during the check-in process.
  • Jewelry, except for wedding and engagement rings, is prohibited.
  • Hair accessories are subject to inspection.  Examinees should not wear ornate clips, combs, barrettes, headbands, and other hair accessories. Examinees wearing any of these items on the test day may be asked to store such items in their locker.


Updated Step 2 Clinical Skills Content Description and General Information booklet

Posted: May 12, 2017

The Step 2 Clinical Skills Content Description and General Information booklet has been updated to include information about automatic submission of the patient note as well as recent enhancements to security procedures

In addition, as previously posted, beginning May 21, 2017, examinees may see a case in which the primary task is to assist the standardized patient with making decisions and/or with disease or problem management. For these cases, a physical examination will not be required, and the data interpretation section of the patient note will not need to be completed.

PLEASE NOTE: the start date for cases that deal with making decisions and problem management was incorrect in the initial posting of the announcement; the correct date is May 21, 2017.


Change to patient note program for the Step 2 CS exam

Posted: May 12, 2017

On or after July 16, 2017, patient notes written in the Step 2 Clinical Skills (CS) exam will automatically submit at the end of the 25 minutes allotted for each patient encounter. Examinees will no longer end the patient note by clicking “Submit.”

 Each patient encounter includes 15 minutes in the examination room, plus an additional 10 minutes to write the patient note. Examinees who leave the exam room before 15 minutes will continue to have additional time for the patient note.

A countdown clock will be visible in the upper right hand corner of the patient note program screen, showing how much time remains. An announcement will be made when two minutes remain for writing the note. The countdown clock will change to red when 30 seconds remain. At the end of 25 minutes, the note will automatically submit and examinees will not be able to continue writing.

A program for practicing writing the patient note is available. Please practice to become familiar with all the features of the program, including the countdown clock and automatic submission of the note, before taking the examination.

Examinees will not be permitted to handwrite the note unless technical difficulties on the test day make the patient note typing program unavailable. All examinees should be prepared for the possibility of having to handwrite the patient note. 


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