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Christopher Cimino, MD, FACMI

Specialty: Neurology

Chief Medical Officer at Kaplan Medical

Words of wisdom:

"My advice is you need to always be aware of where you are and how well you're doing. Do assessments, do diagnostic tests. Interspersed that with studying and see if you're improving."

Dr Ryan Harden USMLE

Ryan Harden, MD, MS

Specialty: Family Medicine

Kaplan Medical Faculty

Words of wisdom:

"There's a great deal of basic medical science that students need to commit to memory in order to score well on the USMLE Step 1 and that's where Kaplan comes into play."

Hafeez Khan USMLE

Hafeez Khan, MD

Specialty: Clinical Informatics

Kaplan Medical Faculty

Words of wisdom:

"There are no shortcuts in life, and definitely, there is no shortcut for the boards. Especially when you want to get a great score."

Alexis Peedin USMLE

Alexis Peedin, MD

Specialty: Pathology

Kaplan Medical Faculty

Words of wisdom:

"You should plan to review all of the material at least two or three time over the course of your study period."

Doctor Ilonka Rincon USMLE

Ilonka Rincon, MD

Specialty: Internal Medicine

Kaplan Medical Content Developer

Words of widsom:

"If you're honest as to where you are at then it's going to be easy to program your study time in a way that really fits what you need."

Doctor Stanley Zaslau USMLE

Stanley Zaslau, MD, MBA, FACS

Specialty: Urology

Kaplan Medical Faculty

Words of wisdom:

"Simply stated there are no shortcuts in board preparation really. You get one chance to pass and not only pass but do the very best you can."

Meet more of our faculty

Get access to more than 75 experts with 250 awards, 760 published research studies and 940 years of collective experience.

Only the best

Only Kaplan Medical has a team of expert basic science and clinical faculty, subject integration and specialty board exams. Our elite group of faculty will prep you for every USMLE Step.

Dr. John Barone
Dr. John Barone
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Dr. Raj Dasgupta
Dr. Raj Dasgupta
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Dr. Nandan Bhatt
Dr. Nandan Bhatt
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Dr. Salvatore Turco
Dr. Salvatore Turco
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Dr. Manuel Castro
Dr. Manuel Castro
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Dr. James White
Dr. James White
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Dr. Frank Noto
Dr. Frank Noto
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Dr. Terriann Crisp
Dr. Terriann Crisp
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Dr. Mahboob Qureshi
Dr. Mahboob Qureshi
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Dr. Stanley Zaslau
Dr. Stanley Zaslau
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Dr. Ryan Mark Harden
Dr. Ryan Mark Harden
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Dr. John Barone
Dr. John Barone

For over 18 years, Dr. John Barone, MD has helped thousands of students from around the world achieve higher scores on their medical licensing exams. After graduating from Albany Medical College, Dr. Barone completed his Residency in Anatomic & Clinical Pathology at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, where twice he was elected Chief Resident, and later Surgical Pathology Fellow. He is currently in private practice.

Student Quote: “He is the best teacher any student could ever ask for. Somehow, he makes you want to study harder and do better. I feel blessed that I got that chance to be his student. He puts a lot of effort into teaching and he really cares about his students.”

Dr. Raj Dasgupta
Dr. Raj Dasgupta

Dr. Raj Dasgupta (MD, FACP, FCCP, FAASM) completed his Internal Medicine residency at Michigan State University, Pulmonary/Critical Care fellowship at Columbia University, Saint Lukes & Roosevelt Hospital and Sleep Medicine fellowship at Henry Ford Hospital. During his training, he received numerous awards including: resident of the year, fellow of the year and the Director’s Award for research. After his training, he worked at Abington Hospital which is affiliated with Jefferson University where he received the faculty teacher of the year. Currently he is a Professor at the University of Southern California (USC) and received the faculty teaching award for the last 3 consecutive years. He is quadruple board certified in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine.  He recently wrote the book 'Medicine Morning Report: Beyond the Pearls'.

Student Quote:Being at Kaplan Medical helped me to enhance my medical knowledge and learn useful strategies. … Through Dr. Dasgupta's class, I was able to transform my enthusiasm for the studies into an effective knowledge for the practice. Thank you for this valuable and unforgettable experience.

Dr. Nandan Bhatt
Dr. Nandan Bhatt

Dr. Nandan Bhatt, MBBS, MD, FRCS has been teaching USMLE for Steps 1, 2 and 3 and for those preparing for the SPEX examination for the past nineteen years. He teaches Neuroanatomy and Neurology and has taught other subjects as well due to his extensive experience in various fields. Dr. Bhatt received his MD from the prestigious St. John's Medical College in Bangalore, India. He then completed General Surgery, and thereafter, Neurology and Neurosurgery.

Student Quote:I could not believe how perfectly you explained neuroanatomy concepts… When I was reviewing the content everything made a lot of sense.

Dr. Salvatore Turco
Dr. Salvatore Turco

Dr. Salvatore (Sam) Turco has taught USMLE Step 1 and COMLEX-USA Level 1 review programs for many years. Dr. Turco received his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Pittsburgh and was postdoctoral fellow at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr. Turco is an endowed Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. He is also an instructor in Kaplan's popular live, online review programs.

Student Quote: “THE BEST!!!! For me his sessions were the most engaging, his way of explaining everything was the best, cleared all our questions, reviewed all the high yield points and gave it the time it deserved, it was just excellent, I would say he is one the BEST!!! THANK YOU DR. TURCO!!!!”

Dr. Manuel Castro
Dr. Manuel Castro

Manuel A. Castro, M.D., AAHIVS is board certified in Internal Medicine and is a certified member of the American Academy of HIV Medicine. He currently resides in Wilton Manors, Florida where has a private practice. Dr. Castro was born and raised in the Dominican Republic where he went to medical school at Universidad Nacional Pedro Henriquez Urena graduating in 1983. His residency was in internal medicine at Illinois Masonic Medical Center in Chicago. Dr Castro started teaching for Kaplan in 2000. He is also currently a Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at Nova Southeastern University and at LECOM Bradenton College of Osteopathy.

Student Quote: “Wonderful lecturer! Dr. Castro really made pulmonary an understandable subject! I very much appreciated his little “tricks” and tips to remember certain concepts and his words of encouragement. I approach cases differently now because of Dr. Castro.”

Dr. James White
Dr. James White

James S. White, Ph.D., is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, where he participates in the teaching of a number of courses, including Human Gross Anatomy, Cell and Tissue Biology and Brain and Behavior. He is the co-author of the Kaplan Medical USMLE Step 1 Anatomy Lecture Notes, and is the author of two review books, USMLE Road Map Neuroscience (2008 McGraw-Hill) and USMLE Road Map Gross Anatomy (2006 McGraw-Hill).

Student Quote: “Dr. James White is a wonderful teacher. He explained Neuroanatomy really well, took time to explain each and every aspect of the different complex pathways methodically, integrating other subjects and clinical scenarios very well.”

Dr. Frank Noto
Dr. Frank Noto

Dr. Frank Noto has taught USMLE Step 1, Step 2CK, Step 3 and COMLEX-USA Level 1 review for Kaplan for over 4 years. Dr. Noto completed MD at SUNY Stony Brook and he completed his Internal Medicine residency at Mount Sinai Hospital, NY in 2006. He is Board Certified in Internal Medicine. Dr. Noto is an Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York and the Internal Medicine Clerkship and Sub-internship Site Director for Mount Sinai School of Medicine at Elmhurst Hospital Center.

Student Quote: “Very engaging lectures. He is able to cover the basic elements of each topic without digging too deep into material that is not high yield for the exam. Probably the best lectures of the entire course.”

Dr. Terriann Crisp
Dr. Terriann Crisp

Dr. Terriann Crisp has served as an academic neuropharmacologist for over 30 years. She received her Ph.D. in Biomedical Science (Pharmacology) from Marshall University School of Medicine and Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center. As a full time faculty member, Dr. Crisp worked through the academic ranks at Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine where she was the recipient of Outstanding Faculty Award for 13 consecutive years.

Student Quote: Dr. Terrian is awesome! Not just like a teacher, she spoke to everyone of us and cared about our preparation!

Dr. Mahboob Qureshi
Dr. Mahboob Qureshi

For over 8 years, Dr. Mahboob Qureshi has taught USMLE Step 1 and COMLEX-USA Level 1 review programs. He received his MPH and MD from the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. He received his PhD in Immunology and MHSc in Epidemiology from the University of the Ryukyus, Japan. Dr. Qureshi is currently an Associate Professor and the Director of Microbiology and Immunology courses at the Touro University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Henderson, Nevada.

Student Quote:Brilliant, made micro very interesting and the multiple choice questions he gave us really helped solidify information.

Dr. Stanley Zaslau
Dr. Stanley Zaslau

Dr. Stanley Zaslau is Professor, Division Chief and Urology Residency Program Director at West Virginia University in Morgantown, West Virginia. He is Board Certified in Urology and Sub Board Certified in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery. Dr. Zaslau received his undergraduate degree from Boston University and his medical degree from Hahnemann University. He completed his urology residency training at Mount Sinai Medical Center and received additional training in neurourology and voiding dysfunction at Long Island College Hospital.

Dr. Ryan Mark Harden
Dr. Ryan Mark Harden

Dr. Harden is a board certified, practicing physician at Gateway Clinic in Sandstone, Minnesota. With a particular interest in hospice and palliative care medicine, he serves as vice chief of staff and Medical Director at Essentia Health, Sandstone. After receiving his masters degree and medical degree from the University of Minnesota School of Medicine Duluth, where he also received Gold Humanism in Medicine honors and Senior Alpha Omega Alpha honors, he completed his residency at the Duluth Family Practice Center. He has given Biochemistry lectures to medical students at Montana State University and the University of Minnesota Duluth School of Medicine and teaches Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Medical Genetics and Pediatrics for Kaplan Medical.

Student Quote: “Dr. Harden was by far the best professor I have witnessed in my medical school life. He is truly gifted in his teaching skills and integrated biochemistry and the clinical sciences in such a unique way.”

Meet your personal medical advisor

Before your course, you’ll meet your medical advisor, a personal coach who’ll prepare you for the journey to a U.S. residency. Together, you’ll create a customized study plan, plan your applications, and assess your readiness for the USMLE exams.

Schedule a complimentary 30-minute session with a medical advisor today.

Only the best

Kaplan's Academic Medical Advisors use their experience and expertise to create study plans that will help you succeed in your USMLE review and Residency Match preparation. Here is a sample of some of the valuable insights you can come to expect from our advising team.

Yachil Baldera
Yachil Baldera
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Agnes Carrara
Agnes Carrara
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Mary Diedrich
Mary Diedrich
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Dr. Arsenio Araniego
Dr. Arsenio Araniego
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Dr. Yamil Flores
Dr. Yamil Flores
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Dr. Abir Habib
Dr. Abir Habib
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Dr. Tenzin Jamyang
Dr. Tenzin Jamyang
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Dr. Flor Hernandez
Dr. Flor Hernandez
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Dr. Hafeez Khan
Dr. Hafeez Khan
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Dr. Reynalyn Reynaldo
Dr. Reynalyn Reynaldo
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Mark Ratliff
Mark Ratliff
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Dr. Muhammad Shah
Dr. Muhammad Shah
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Dr. John Arshadi
Dr. John Arshadi
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Dr. Mee Mee Tun Yin
Dr. Mee Mee Tun Yin
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Dr. Benjamin Wood
Dr. Benjamin Wood
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Yachil Baldera
Yachil Baldera

Yachil Baldera is a graduate of the University of Central Florida and is fluent in Spanish. During her career with Kaplan Test Prep, she has guided countless students in identifying the preparation that best suits their needs and targets their goal scores. She is committed to supporting students on their Pathway to Medical Residency, from identifying strengths and deficiencies to building confidence.

What med students ask her most often:

How long should I study for?

What score should I aim for?

Yachil's advice:

My formula for student success is passion combined with steady effort. I believe in creating a plan and sticking to it.

Agnes Carrara
Agnes Carrara

Agnes Carrara has over 20 years experience advising students and is fluent in both English and French. She has worked with student doctors who are pursuing medical careers in the United States, as well as Canada, and has extensive knowledge in the Match and Residency processes for both countries. Agnes is passionate about her students and truly enjoys helping them achieve their goals. She believes in hard work and dedication in order to be successful, and she is ready to help you to get there.

What med students ask her most often:

What kind of courses do you offer for the Medical Licensing Exam?

When should I start studying for the USMLE exams?

Agnes' advice:

The 4 P's: Planning, Preparation, Practice and Patience will lead you to your best score.

Mary Diedrich
Mary Diedrich

Mary Diedrich is a graduate of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York. She has spent the last ten years advising students and is committed to helping them achieve the highest scores possible on their USMLE exams. As a Kaplan Medical Center Advisor, as well as a National Medical Advisor, Mary has advised US and International Medical Graduates on their paths to Residency.

What med students ask her most often:

There is so much material to cover. Can you help me stay organized and on track to test well?

How do I know when I'm exam-ready?

It is hard for me to concentrate when I study. What are the best ways to stay focused?

How can I overcome test-anxiety?

Mary's advice:

Break down seemingly insurmountable tasks into many mini-tasks. This helps to show you've accomplished something, and the task is done. It also helps to encourage you to start the next one. A task that is attainable is always easier to start than one that appears too difficult at the onset.

Dr. Arsenio Araniego
Dr. Arsenio Araniego

Dr. Arsenio Araniego is a graduate of Far Eastern University, School of Physical Therapy and Institute of Medicine in the Philippines, and is a licensed Physical Therapist in the states of Georgia and New York. He plans to pursue a career in Neurology. As a medical advisor, he appreciates the opportunity to guide both students and graduates through their review experience by sharing his recent successes with the help of Kaplan. He loves the academic role that the position also brings to the table, having been raised by a mother who is a public school teacher. He believes that in order to be successful in the USMLE, residency application, and actual medical practice, an individual should be not just mentally set, but also physically, psychologically, and emotionally ready. This how he prepares and helps the hopefuls he advises.

What medical students ask him most often:

"Will I be ready for the exam after the live lectures?"

"What is the best practice exam and predictor for passing the exam?"

"My scores are still low, when will I be ready for the exam?"

Dr. Arsenio's advice:

"In the exam, they ask about things that you either know or you don't, and repetition is key to establish good memory and recall."

"It's impossible for the exams to ask about everything in medicine. It is also impossible to fit everything about medicine in your brain, so you need to remember and understand the important and high-yield information that will most likely be asked in the exam."

“Never compare yourself with anybody else. Only then will you appreciate your true progress."

Dr. Yamil Flores
Dr. Yamil Flores

Dr. Yamil Flores was born and raised in Puerto Rico. He was admitted into the Program in Liberal Medical Education at Brown University, where he received his medical degree. Dr. Flores has an interest in psychiatry and has worked with children and adolescents at Bradley Hospital in Rhode Island. He has a long history of advising students, going back to his undergraduate and medical school years where he was a mentor for students of diverse ethnic backgrounds. He currently interviews prospective students applying to Brown University. Yamil knows first-hand what it is like to study and prepare for the USMLE Step exams and understands the sacrifices many students have to make in order to achieve their target scores. He is eager to work with his students and guide them on their own road to success!

In his spare time, Yamil enjoys sports, music and spending time with his wife and daughter. He is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese.

Dr. Flores' advice:

The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.” - Mark Twain

“Take a day off each week and have fun! Don’t forget to eat, sleep and exercise... it will help your scores!”

Dr. Abir Habib
Dr. Abir Habib

Dr. Abir Habib graduated and obtained her medical degree from Minia University School of Medicine in Egypt. She has five years of experience working with international medical graduates and US medical students. She joined Kaplan Medical as a Clinical Skills Program Physician and is currently working as an Academic Medical Advisor at the New York City center. Dr. Habib is fluent in English and Arabic. She is very passionate about helping Kaplan students reach their goals.

What medical students ask her most often:

"Do I have a chance to get a residency position in the USA?"

Dr. Habib's advice:

"If you work hard towards getting a high score in your exams, you will be able to achieve your dream. The best way to get a high score for USMLE is to follow a well-structured study plan that is uniquely yours."

Dr. Tenzin Jamyang
Dr. Tenzin Jamyang

Dr. Tenzin Jamyang is a graduate of University of Delhi, India. He is our Senior Medical Advisor and has a passion for helping students, acclimating them with the tedious USMLE journey, preparing study plans, ECFMG registration, ERAS application process and guiding them through the interview process to achieve their goals in attaining the Residency of their choice. He has seven years of experience working with medical students and graduates from all countries. He is your one stop shop for your USMLE journey.

What med students ask him most often:

How long will I need to prepare for my Step 1?

Is it true that IMGs will not get into residency after 2015?

Dr. Jamyang's advice:

Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe. –Abraham Lincoln

Dr. Flor Hernandez
Dr. Flor Hernandez

Dr. Flor Hernandez is an IMG, just like you. She graduated from medical school and a pediatric residency in El Salvador, Central America.

What students ask her the most is: How can I improve my performance?

Dr. Flor’s advice: Every student has their own weaknesses and strengths. Find yours and work on a study plan according to that. Small changes every day can make a big improvement in the long term.

Dr. Hafeez Khan
Dr. Hafeez Khan

Dr. Hafeez Khan graduated from Unibe School of Medicine in the Dominican Republic. He works with students to create customized study plans depending on their unique needs and helps them to reduce their anxiety and stress whenever they have USMLE Syndrome. He assists them with ECFMG and ERAS application processes.

What med students ask her most often:

How difficult is it to get into Surgery/Dermatology/Plastic Surgery?

What are my chances to get into residency, being an older IMG?

Hafeez's advice:

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.- Nelson Mandela

Dr. Reynalyn Reynaldo
Dr. Reynalyn Reynaldo

Dr. Reynalyn Reynaldo Aguayon, aka Dr. Reyna, graduated with honors from La Sierra University with her Bachelors in Science in Biology and received her Medical Degree from St. Matthew's University School of Medicine.  She has worked for Kaplan in various capacities, including managing the Service and Operation of the Pasadena Center and the Clinical Skills program. Her passion to ensure that each doctor who takes a Kaplan course receives excellent resources and services continues with her skills to encourage and provide students with personalized study plans to achieve their goals to pursue residency.

What med students ask her most often: What can I do to achieve high scores?

Dr. Reyna’s Advice: Nothing can be achieved without putting in the time, effort and drive to achieve success. Believe in yourself and have confidence to conquer the exam.

Mark Ratliff
Mark Ratliff

Mark Ratliff is a graduate of Ohio State University and has spent the past eight years instructing and advising international students and doctors. As a Kaplan test-taking expert, Mark uses personalized study techniques and his extensive teaching expertise to motivate his students and help them achieve their Residency goals. He believes that all students have their own plan for success and that he can help them find it! He also provides guidance regarding the Residency application process and the key ingredients to a successful Match. Mark is eager to help you get started down the pathway to Residency with Kaplan Medical!

Mark's advice:

In order to achieve success on these exams, you must have the determination to focus on your studies and the wisdom to know when you are ready. As your med advisor, I'll help you with both!

Dr. Muhammad Shah
Dr. Muhammad Shah

Dr. Shah is a graduate of the Chandka Medical University, and is fluent in Urdu, Hindi and English. He earned a Masters in Health Services Administration (MPA/HSA) from the University of San Francisco. In addition, he is perusing his PhD in Leadership. Dr. Shah loves to help USMLE students to reach their goals. He is very passionate about providing services to IMGs /US Med students for the USMLE test, path to residency and licensing process. Dr. Shah prepares doctors for the USMLE Examinations by creating customized study plans.

What med students ask him most often:

Which NBME is most predictive of USMLE Step score?

What is the best time to start Qbank?

Dr. Shah's advice:

Have a study plan by December of your second year.

Distractions are the worst enemy of efficient studying. Avoid them at all costs!!

Set realistic goals. Do not set reading plans that you cannot possibly fulfill.

This test is a marathon. You have to study to do well. There is a lot of material, but you have to focus.

Dr. John Arshadi
Dr. John Arshadi

In addition to coaching students through the USMLE examinations, Dr. Arshadi encourages them to dig deep and remember why they chose to practice medicine in the first place. Preparing for the USMLE examinations can be a daunting task and remembering your "WHY" will play an instrumental role in keeping you motivated. His mission is to inspire faith and confidence in students in their ability to unlock their true, untapped potential and academic capabilities.

What do students ask you most often?
When is the best time to take my exam?

What is your advice?
The short answer is, “When you're ready for it.”
Many students attempt to take the exam before they are fully prepared for it. With the increasing competition in securing a residency spot year after year, your main goal should be to do extremely well on the exam the first time around. Do not buy into people telling you to take your exam as soon as possible or take it at a certain time of the year.
Remember, “How you do anything is how you do everything.” Programs aren't just looking for a high test score, they are looking for people willing to put in the effort and hard work that it takes to achieve a high test score. Because this directly correlates to how they will perform in their residency program as well.

Dr. Mee Mee Tun Yin
Dr. Mee Mee Tun Yin

Dr. Mee Mee Tun Yin has been a Medical Advisor for Kaplan since 2013, working in Philadelphia and Miami. She is originally from Sacramento, California and attended medical school at the University of Rome 'La Sapienza,' in Italy. After graduation, she studied at the Kaplan Pasadena Center for her USMLE exams.

Having truly enjoyed her time with Kaplan, she accepted a position and now asks her students to view her not only as their Medical Advisor, but also as their trusted friend-together acing the USMLE and matching into the Residency program of their dreams.

What med students ask her most often:

Can you draw up a study plan for me that will give me a great score?

Dr. Tun Yin's advice:

I will draw up the best personalized study plan for you. However, if you do not focus, preview, review, re-mediate and practice Q Bank questions, even the best study plan in the world cannot be of any help to you. Please do not find any quick fixes to pass the USMLE exam. You need to get the best score that you can achieve, and in order to do that you have to give each USMLE Step the time it needs to prepare for it.

Dr. Benjamin Wood
Dr. Benjamin Wood

Dr. Benjamin Wood earned his medical degree from the American University of Antigua College of Medicine.  He also has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri at Columbia and a master’s degree in secondary education from the University of Missouri at Saint Louis.  Prior to working with Kaplan, he has tutored and advised medical students in their preparation for their Step 2 CK and Step 2 CS Exams. He loves helping other people succeed and accomplish their goals and believes that dedication, perseverance, and persistence lead the way to success on the USMLE exams.

What do students ask you most often?

Do you think that I am ready to take the test?

What is your advice?

The question for the student shouldn’t be  “Am I going to pass or fail on the USMLE,” but instead “How high can I get my score on the USMLE,” and the answer to that is in how they prepare and the amount of effort they put into their studies.  To say that the USMLE can be stressful is an understatement and it is easy to feel overwhelmed while preparing for it. Believe and have faith in yourself and stick to your daily study schedule. The student has to make the exam their #1 priority, so be honest with yourself with regards to whether or not you are actually studying and preparing or instead being distracted by outside influences.  Approach the USMLE as if the real exam isn’t on test day, but instead on each day of your preparation, testing whether or not you are following through on your study schedule and goals. On the actual day of the USMLE, the student should feel over-prepared and excited to take the exam, so that when it is over they leave the testing center with a smile on their face, knowing that they did everything they could in their preparation to do their very best on the USMLE.