Testing is a major part of a student’s medical school experience. Along with numerous pre-clinical subject and block exams, med students must complete a series of tests known as the SHELF exams. These board-administered exams ensure students have the knowledge and practical assessment capabilities they can adapt to the real world during real-life scenarios.

The SHELF Exam: A Critical Part of Medical School

Each exam covers information in various medical subjects including anatomy, pathology, and pharmacology. Exams generally contain between 100 and 200 multiple-choice questions. The questions on the SHELF exams are difficult and designed to pose critical thinking skills. The tests are also a critical part of the medical school experience.

SHELF exams can create plenty of stress and worry for medical students. The following tips are designed to ease that stress and worry and ensure students are well-prepared for exam day.

Take Cues From Your Instructor

Instructors spend more time teaching important information. Pay attention when a teacher focuses on a specific medical condition or area of interest. The information instructors focus on are topics most likely covered on SHELF exams.

Understand the Exam

Understanding the SHELF exam gives students an advantage since they know what to expect on the exam and how to prepare. Students who understand the exam can better plan their study time and devote attention to subjects where additional focus is necessary. Students are not caught off guard on exam day when they complete practice exams and better understand the test. The syllabus provides great information regarding SHELF exams and what to expect.

Create a Study Plan

A study plan provides students with a travel path. Stick to the study plan to ensure success on exam day. In the study plan, list strengths and weaknesses, areas of concern, allocate study time and set attainable goals.

Students with study plans can better allocate and manage their time and benefit from the added organization it creates. Creating a study plan allows students to break down their time into manageable blocks without overexerting themselves, which can lead to disaster on exam day.

Schedule Extra Study Time

Adding more study time to the agenda can better prepare students to take the exam. The SHELF exam determines if students have the knowledge and skills necessary to practice as a physician. The test is difficult, to say the least.

Students must prove they not only have medical knowledge, but skills they can take to the real world and use in real-life situations. Tests are strenuous and timed, with as many as 200 questions. Allocating additional study time within the weeks before the SHELF exams is a key to success.

Only the strong survive medical school, students with a strong desire to make a difference in the lives of others while working in a well-respected profession.

Schedule extra time to study for this exam to prove yourself as one of the students

who not only years for this desirable position but who can go above and beyond in the role.

Befriend Med Students Ahead of You in Their Studies

Students who’ve completed the SHELF exams can provide current med students with valuable information that eases exam jitters and provides them with quintessential knowledge and information. Take advantage of the information provided by elder med students and medical professionals as its available.

A few ways to do this:

  • Speak With the Professor: Many professors and educators offer office time that students can book to ask questions and get information about the exam.
  • Social Media: Sending friend requests and/or following med students and professionals on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter can also be a great way to learn valuable study and exam information.
  • Attend Conferences and Workshops: Held across the U.S., conferences and workshops provide valuable insight and information covering various medical tops. Some are free, others cost a few bucks, although are worth every single cent.
  • Tutors: SHELF exam tutors seem to ease some of the stress associated with the test. They can assist with creating a study plan, analyzing difficult information, and more.

Study Groups

Medical students find study groups ideal for their situations. The benefits of attending a study group better prepare students to take the tedious SHELF exams, with benefits such as:

  • Learn different opinions and perspectives on a medical problem or procedure
  • Gain motivation to study even when you would rather do anything else
  • Gain a better understanding of complex topics through easy-to-understand conversations
  • Better manage time
  • Find guidance to help with study areas of concern
  • Guide other students in their studies to score high on the SHELF exam

The motivation and support from other students and professional shelf exam service can also help ease tension and fear of the SHELF exams and provide more confidence when test day arrives. The benefits above explain why almost all med students before their big test day.

The Importance of Rest

Although getting enough sleep is always important, ensuring it happens before a big exam is essential. A lack of sleep affects several cognitive functions, including memory, concentration, and problem-solving skills, all critical components during an exam.

Well-rested students are more alert and attentive, process information better, enjoy better problem-solving skills, and are more creative than students who are tired and need more sleep.

Well-rested students also enjoy reduced stress levels, fewer headaches, and less anxiety.

Ace the SHELF Exam

Medical school is a long, tedious journey into an exciting, well-respected profession. All the required exams add more stress to med school. The study tips here aim to reduce some of the stress associated with medical school and help students better prepare to take the SHELF exams.