MRCP part 1 experience
I gave my MRCP part 1 in just 3 months after moving to the UK with just 2 months of preparation. Almost everyone was telling me that you need atleast 4-5 months of prep (with a job) and that I should allow myself to settle into the system before giving the exam.
However, after moving here, I felt really lonely and home-sick. My mom convinced me to go ahead and give the exam for the sole reason that the prep would keep me distracted.
I booked my exam on the last day of the registration period, still unsure of whether I would be able to prep.
Pass Medicine. (Magraby Notes when I felt too bored to solve questions.)
I did not touch any other q-bank or text book. Infact, due to time constrains, I could solve only 2500 questions out of 3000 that the above q-bank offered.
Also, please go for the online version as new questions are routinely added and the latest guidelines are updated regularly.)
However, as I have always stressed, having a relatively decent medical knowledge and reading standard medical textbooks like Harrison’s in my medical school is essential if you want to crack the exam with a very short period of prep. Make sure that you have more time for prep if have not done so in your medical school.
When I subscribed to Pass Medicine, I had 82 days for my exam to go. However, I did not start solving until it countdown came to 64 days as I was too worked up my new life in UK.
Gradually I started solving around 30 questions per day and reading explanations. By the 1st of December, when my mother came to visit me, I only did around 800-1000 questions. My pace of study picked up only when my mother’s visit. I started doing around 50 questions per day. Mind you that I was working and I hardly had 2-3 hours for prep everyday.
I took an annual leave around 2 weeks before my exam. By then, I could finish all topics from Pass Medicine, except Infectious Diseases and Hematology. I decided not to do them and started revising the topics that I have read again. During this period, I studied for around 8-9 hours per day. My plan was to finish off revision 2 days before the exam and then quickly skim through the 2 topics that I had left. However, unfortunately I couldn’t spare time to read the 2 topics and went ahead to give the exam without reading them.
I took my exam in London. (8th January, 2019). I reached there 1 day before my exam with my mother and stayed in the same hotel where my exam was being held so that there was no need for me to get up very early in the morning and travel to the centre. A good night’s sleep is really essential as the exam is very long and can make you exhausted.
For those who do not know, the exam is held in 2 sessions: morning and afternoon, each session lasting for 3 hours. You have 100 questions to solve in each session.
The question pattern was very similar to Pass Medicine. Some questions were direct repeats. There is a lot of time to think. So even if you do not know the answer to any question, think and choose the best out of the 5 options provided. Remember that the other options might also be right, but you need to choose the best out of them.
Work HARD! Party HARDER! Good luck!