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Computer-assisted scoring coming to Step 2 CS

Posted: September 26, 2019

The United States Medical Licensing Exam (USMLE) program is committed to applying the best available technology and the most current assessment practices to ensure accuracy and validity for all its examination programs. Beginning October 2019, computer-assisted scoring technology will be used to score patient notes created by examinees for the USMLE Step 2 Clinical Skills (CS) examination.

The use of computer-assisted scoring will not change the cost of the exam, nor the timing with which examinees receive their scores. The computer-assisted scoring program is based on the scoring rubrics developed by experienced physician note raters. For cases in which computer-assisted scoring is used, notes with machine scores below the 50th percentile in performance will also be scored by physician patient note raters. The machine scores and physician scores will then be averaged to produce the examinee’s score on the patient note portion of the Step 2 CS exam.

Much consideration has gone into the implementation of computer-assisted scoring. Most importantly, the crucial role of clinical judgment in the evaluation of Step 2 CS performances will be preserved. Second, the examinee experience will not be adversely affected. The expert judgment of physicians will be used on an ongoing basis for the development of patient note scoring guidelines and in the training of the computer-based scoring system.

Click here for FAQs related to computer-assisted scoring. To read more about NBME’s work with natural language processing, see a recent article in Academic Medicine here.


Step 1 – Delay in score reporting

Posted: January 13, 2020

If you need to receive Step 1 scores before July 8, 2020 it is recommended that you take the exam no later than May 3, 2020

 Most Step 1 scores are reported within four weeks of testing. However, because of necessary annual modifications to the test item pool, there will be a delay in reporting for some examinees who test beginning the week of May 4, 2020. 

The target date for reporting Step 1 scores for most examinees testing the week of May 4, 2020 through mid-June will be Wednesday, July 8, 2020. For examinees whose circumstances require that they receive Step 1 scores before July 8, 2020, it is recommended that they take Step 1 no later than May 3, 2020.


Step 2 CS testing appointment arrival time to change in 2020

Posted: December 16, 2019

 Effective January 3, 2020, the arrival time for Step 2 Clinical Skills (CS) testing appointments will be 15 minutes earlier than in 2019, due to additional security check-in procedures at the testing centers.  During check-in, test center staff will scan examinees with a handheld or walk-through device designed to detect prohibited items.

New arrival times at all CSEC centers
  • AM Sessions:   7:30 AM
  • PM Sessions:   2:30 PM
If you are currently scheduled to take Step 2 CS on or after January 3, 2020, please log in to the Step 2 CS Calendar & Scheduling system to print your confirmation notice with the updated arrival time. 

Please note that you must comply with all security procedures for entry into the exam. 
For more information on examination day and testing procedures, please refer to the USMLE Bulletin of Information.

If you have questions, please contact your registration entity, either the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) at info@ecfmg.org, or the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) at webmail@nbme.org.


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