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Testing - Step 3 and ABIM

    To be eligible for your initial certification exam, categorical residents must have "satisfactorily completed, by August 31 of the year of examination, 36 calendar months, including vacation time, of graduate medical education.

    Med-Peds residents must "satisfactorily complete 48 months of combined education... The certifying examination cannot be taken until all required years in both specialties are satisfactorily completed."

More information for J-1 Visas is available here.

The exam fee is $1,365, and there is an additional $400 late-registration fee for anyone who signs up after the initial registration window. Initial Registration dates are: December 1st - April 15th.  Late registration is April 16th - March 1st. 

The test consists of 4 sections, with 60 questions each. You are alloted 120 minutes per section, which works out to 2 minutes per question, just like questions in Academic Half Day. Information about test day is available here.

Click here to review BUMCP's historic pass rates.

Medstudy provides a free study calendar tool called Personal Trainer.


Board of



To be eligible for Step 3, you must have a medical degree, and have passed your Steps 1, 2 CK, and 2 CS.  The exam fee is $830. The test is offered on various dates at Prometric Testing Centers throughout the year.  

Scheduling Step 3 consists of multiple steps. The first step is to pay the fee, and apply for a scheduling permit through FSMB. Your scheduling permit is accessible through your USMLE account. Once you obtain it, you select your eligibility period, which is a two month span during which you plan to take the test. The individual dates available within that testing period vary between inividual Prometric centers. You can schedule and take your two testing days on consecutive days, or non-consecutive days up to14 days apart.

The program STRONGLY ENCOURAGES you to have your Step 3 exam scheduled by December of your second year. It should be scheduled during a non-call month. One flex day will be granted for Step 3. Please request your dates before you schedule the exam. Please note - April and May are Awesome Board Review months, so no Step 3 exam dates will be approved during those months until after we have ABR scheduled. Please request your dates before you schedule your test to avoid costly re-scheduling fees.

The two days of Step 3 are unique. The first day of testing includes 233 multiple-choice items divided into 6 blocks of 38-40 items. 60 minutes are allotted for completion of each block of test items. There are approximately 7 hours in the test session on the first day, including 45 minutes of break time. 

There are approximately 9 hours in the test session on the second day. This includes 180 multiple-choice items, divided into 6 blocks of 30 items. 45 minutes are allotted for completion of each block of test items. The second day also includes 13 case simulations, each of which is allotted a maximum of 10 or 20 minutes of real time. A minimum of 45 minutes is available for break time. 

Information about test content is available here.

General information about the test is available here.

USMLE transcripts must be purchased through USMB for Arizona State licenses, and most other states.


Step 3

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