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Title: National board of medical examiners and curriculum change
Authors: Ojaimi, Mode 
Khairallah, Megan R. 
Younes, Rayya 
Salloum, Sara 
Zgheib, Ghania 
Affiliations: Faculty of Medicine 
Department of Education 
Department of Education 
Department of Education 
Department of Education 
Keywords: National Board of Medical Examiners
Medicine II curricular changes
Assessment of analytical reasoning skills
Multiple-choice questions
USMLE step 1 results
Issue Date: 2020
Part of: Journal of medical education and curricular development
Volume: 7
Start page: 1
End page: 8
Objectives: This study describes the results of NBME (National Board of Medical Examiners) implementation in Balamand Medical School (BMS) from 2015 to 2019, after major curricular changes were introduced as of 2012. BMS students performance was compared with the international USMLE step 1 (United States Medical Licensing Examination, herein referred to as step 1) cohorts performances. The BMS students NBME results were analyzed over the successive academic years to assess the impact of the serial curricular changes that were implemented. Methods: This longitudinal study describes the performance of BMS preclinical second year medicine (Med II) students on all their NBME exams over 4 academic years starting 2015-2016 to 2018-2019. These scores were compared with the step 1 comparison group scores using item difficulty. The t test was computed for each of the NBME exams to check whether the scores differences were significant. Results: Results revealed that all BMS cohorts scored lower than the international USMLE step 1 comparison cohorts in all disciplines across the 4 academic years except Psychiatry. However, the results were progressively approaching step 1 results, and the difference between step 1 scores and BMS students NBME scores became closer and not significant as of year 4. Conclusions: The results of the study are promising. They show that the serial curricular changes enabled BMS Med II students scores to reach the international cohorts scores after 4 academic years. Moreover, the absence of statistical difference between cohort 4 scores and step 1 cohorts is not module dependent and applies to all clinical modules. Further studies should be conducted to assess whether the results obtained for cohort 4 can be maintained.
DOI: 10.1177/2382120520925062
Ezproxy URL: Link to full text
Type: Journal Article
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Medicine

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