I often get asked questions like…
“Can you provide a general pediatric board study schedule?”
“I'm in practice, can you provide me with a pediatric board study plan that works for me?”
“Can you provide a pediatric board study schedule for those of us in fellowship?”
When you’re preparing for your pediatric board exam, the most essential first step is to map out a dedicated amount of time for your studying based on this article. If you are a first-time test taker, and you:
Then this is the schedule for you! I would recommend that you find a MINIMUM of 300 hours to block out in your schedule, with plans to go through your Pediatrics Board Review material at least THREE times.
Please remember, though, a schedule is only as valuable as your DETERMINATION to follow it. In this article, I break down those 300 hours into a manageable, concrete schedule that you can use to guide your studies and PASS the pediatric boards.
Since it’s impossible for me to know exactly what your commitments are, what I’ve tried to do below is map out 14 weeks of study time based on the goal of studying approximately 300 hours.
Even if you do not agree with everything I recommend, keep reading to get some ideas. I also share some pearls of wisdom towards the end to help you manage your study time!
If you feel you don’t meet the above criteria, don’t worry! I have created a 16-week study schedule to help you succeed on the boards! The recommendations in the other article are tailored towards graduates who were told that they were "at risk" of failing the boards based on their in-training exam scores, and those who have already failed the boards at least once.
A failed pediatric boards attempt is devastating and having failed once myself I can only imagine what is going through your head.
But before you throw yourself back into the depths of studying, here are two things I want you to understand:
I have found that the biggest differentiating factor between failing and passing the boards is having a schedule that takes a more strategic approach to studying and keeps you accountable.
Almost 50% of the pediatricians who buy our study guides have failed the pediatric boards before. With the right plan in place, though, you can pass. We know this because we have helped multiple people pass after as many as SEVEN failed attempts.
My goal in writing this article is to outline a detailed schedule that will help you pass the boards, even if you’ve had a failed attempt. Specifically, how to do so with materials that will HELP you (not fail you) during your next pediatric board exam.
Some housekeeping items before jumping into the schedule:
Go check out my 14-week study schedule for first-time test takers. That schedule is similar to the one below but less rigorous!
As you go through this schedule, try this great highlighter trick that I teach my PBR members as a focused studying tool. If you can master this, you will have a more efficient board preparation experience.
For each reading of the material, you highlight (or underline) only the areas you are interested in reviewing again. If you know something well enough to recall it on the day of the exam, don’t highlight it.
First, start with your lightest color. Then, with each read through thereafter, use a slightly Click Here And Continue Reading...
The Test-Taking Strategies Course is specifically for physicians, medical students and medical professionals who are preparing for standardized board exam. It is the low-hanging fruit that can help you avoid having a failed pediatric board experience.
The program is a techniques-based program geared towards:
The course also assists with:
It is an eye-opening experience for most physicians who go through the course. Many find it shocking to learn techniques and systems that can be applied to help find the correct answer even with LITTLE CLINICAL KNOWLEDGE about a particular topic. It's a
Ashish, I did it. I can't thank you enough for creating an amazing system to keep me on track with my studying. And… the live weekend test taking course was well worth it. Doing the technique during the test kept me focused and allowed me to eliminate wrong answers. Thank you for all the great advice, sticking to the material, memorize, memorize, memorize then practice practice practice. After 4 failed attempts it was exhilirating to finally read the words, “we are PLEASED to announce you PASSED!”…
I also wanted to let you know that since passing boards, I began looking for new jobs and in June I will be a pediatric hospitalist at University of Chicago, which means more pay, benefits, an exciting new field of medicine and more time at home with my girls. Thank you soooo much!
– Dr. Yessenia Castro-Caballero, Board Certified Pediatrician
The general structure of the course is as follows:
‘I found myself stuck many times, failing to pick the best answer even though the correct answer was always between my best 2 options. Everything was more clear when Ashish recommended to always pick the answer that addresses the “most important clinical issue” of the question. I started to use this technique this past week, and my test scores have improved remarkably. Thanks so much!! I am ready for the next webinar!!'
– Dr. Leslie
Appreciated that Ashish was able to break down the thought process and convey it to me. It reinforced prior techniques learned, focuses on my effort, and gives me confidence in performing the techniques consistently. I was beginning to feel like I was “all over the pace” when approaching the questions. The techniques were articulated in a way which “clicked” with me.
The test-taking strategies from PBR's courses have helped physicians finally pass their boards after they had failed MULTIPLE times.
The pediatric board exam has historically had one of the highest failure rates in all of medicine. In recent years, a maximum cap was placed on the number of times a pediatrician could take the boards. We've had the pleasure of helping doctors FINALLY pass their board exams during their LAST possible attempt! They had failed FOUR, FIVE and even SIX times and it was a true Click Here And Continue Reading...
When it comes to passing the pediatric board exam, all logic and reason can get thrown out the window during “crunch time.”
In this article, I want to share some resources and tips to help you calm the nerves, help you focus on maximizing your chances at passing the pediatric boards and most of all… ensure that at the end of the test-taking process you have absolutely NO REGRETS!
Well, let’s answer all the following questions:
I answer this question in detail in a Pediatrics Board Review article titled, “How Many AAP PREP Questions Should I Do?”
In summary, the idea behind using ANY sort of board questions should be for PRACTICE. It is NOT to learn board-relevant content. For that, you should be focusing on a single, primary study resource (called the PBR).
This means that you don’t aim to learn new content from those questions. Your aim should be to practice your test-taking SKILLS. When I refer to “test taking skills,” I mean…
Passing the board exam requires a blend of strong board-relevant clinical knowledge, plus test-taking skills. Many physicians do not realize this and they continue to fail over and over again. They assume that board questions are like miniature patients, but they are not! Click Here And Continue Reading…
NO! Pediatric board questions are NOT like mini-patients.
Don’t believe me? Well, by the end of this article you’re going to:
How would you proceed with the little girl below? It’s a short question, so please set your timer to 60 seconds, read the question below and commit to ONE answer choice.
A 3-year-old female toddler presents for a routine well child visit. You note an abdominal mass on exam. You suspect the child may have a Wilms tumor. There have not been any urinary symptoms, but urine dipstick shows evidence of blood. There’s a history of breast cancer in the family.
Which of the following is the most appropriate diagnostic test to determine the cause of the patient’s abdominal mass?
A. CT scan of the abdomen and pelvis
B. Complete urinalysis
C. Oncology referral
D. Biopsy of the mass
E. BRCA gene testing
In 2012, the Pediatrics Board Review Corrections & Clarifications Guide was only about 25 pages. The guide contained corrections that I found and that others found in the 2nd edition of the Pediatrics Board Review Core Study Guide. The guide provided a TON of value and helped many people correctly answer questions they would have otherwise gotten wrong! I think there's still value in reviewing it today because these guides give me the freedom to write freely about pretty much anything related to topics, studying for the boards, etc.
Want the 2012 guide? Just click LIKE below and then download it (Sorry! As of Sept. 2014, the LIKE software no longer works… so I'm now just giving it away! Just click on the image to download the guide. It would be GREAT if you could visit https://www.facebook.com/PedsBoardReview and give it a LIKE).