Thursday, April 7, 2016

Dr. Thinker: FAQs regarding the application for USMLE Step exams

These are some of the questions I had encountered on multiple occasions from many people.
1.      Can we change the testing center from some country to the USA or from the USA to some other country?
-          Yes, you can change from any country to another country.
-          Just call ECFMG customer care. They will give you a number to which you can fax your request. You will just have to write your details and the request “Please, change my testing center from “current country” to “the country you want”, on a white paper and sign at the bottom.
-          If you change your testing center from any other country to the USA, then you will get a refund for the testing center surcharge fee(150$) that was earlier charged in your country.
-          If you change your testing center from the USA to any other country, then you will be charged a testing center surcharge fee depending on the country you are changing it to.
2.      Can we extend Step1/2ck/3 more than once?
-          Yes, you can as many times you want.
-          Within the eligibility period, you can change your exam date as many times as you want. If you do it more than 31 days prior to the exam date, then you don’t have to pay any fee. Otherwise, there will be a fee every time you change the date.
-          You can extend the 3 month eligibility only once with a small fee.
-          Once the extended 3 month eligibility is also over, then you will have to pay for a new step application fee (entire amount) to get a new eligibility.

3.      Does giving a step in the USA is beneficial in getting more marks?
-          I don’t think there is any such correlation between the score and USA as the testing center.

4.      Anticipated year of graduation for Step application if you haven’t graduated yet.
-          Just put an anticipated date as per your current situation.
-          This date can be different when you are applying again for another step exam.
-          The only date of graduation that is final and remains in the ECFMG records  is the one you submit during credentials verification after graduation.
5.      What to mention in the Clerkships section of the application?
-          Just leave it blank (or select the option NO) even if you had done clerkships in the USA, unless you got credits for it.
-          It is for the American medical graduates or the Caribbean graduates who do clerkships in hospitals other than home school and get credits for it.

6.      For Indians: What date should you mention for YOG? Is it internship completion date or date on the certificate?
-          You can mention the date of issue mentioned on the diploma.

7.      Should I mention it as a break in education if I had gone for clerkships and hence delayed my internship end date?
-          No, never mention it as a break in medical education.


  1. Hai,I have applied for step1 in August,my form 186 was accepted but I was asked to reapply and send my diploma so on sep 28th I have sent it through mail and on October 3rd got a mail that they received it.But till today I see my application is in process when I checked in OASIS so I'm worried as my eligibility period is October to December and as I don't stay in India I want to change my eligibility period and testing region from India to USA as I didn't get my scheduling permit yet so are they going to charge for it,is it the same process as u mentioned in question 1?plz let me know

  2. hi i have done no research work or any extra curricular activity during my med school in india and have been preparing for indian pg since two years post my internship completion....what is my scope if i apply for the usmle now


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