How Julie Improved her Score by 40 points on Practice Exams

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As long as you take advantage of all the materials out there and make sure you know the content well, it is totally a feasible exam! It is a long and grueling process but so worth it in the end!

Julie Suarez

I am an international student, so studying for me was a little bit more of a slow and steady wins the race, just because I felt like I needed to do a little bit more when it came to the material. It was relatively hard for me to find good information on what to expect on test day, and how to be best prepared. I wound up reading and watching a bunch of youtube videos on the exam and came across Mental Dental. After finding Mental Dental videos, I quickly found blogs of people sharing specific study materials and their stories on how they passed the INBDE.

I gave myself around 5 months to study for the exam because I did not know how the process was going to work for me specifically. I started with mental dental videos in August and took about a month to go through them, making sure I made detailed notes for each video. After I finished the videos, I bought the 6 month membership of bootcamp! I mixed in the Tufts Pharm review as well as the Mosby NBDE II exam in the back of the book. I studied every day for anywhere from 3-6 hrs a day and took Sundays off. I personally felt really overwhelmed with the amount of information I was trying to put in my brain so I studied probably longer than I should have. In October I found out about the Anki cards and did those as well, I did about 90% of the cards, but just felt like I was confident with the information by the end of November that i did not really need them anymore. I remember when I started bootcamp I was getting 40s-50s on the practice exams, and it really made me freak out, but I'm here to tell you it's ok! After I went through all of the questions once, I started getting 80s on the practice exams and felt much more confident. The week before my exam I found myself getting anxious and almost angry because I just did not know what else to study but at the same time I felt unprepared. I probably did every question on Bootcamp 2-3 times, and pretty much was able to answer questions very quickly.

I took my exam Dec 19th and 20th, 2022. Day One I felt unprepared going in (again, this is normal). I took all of my breaks and finished feeling very in the middle. I had finished very quickly and I was not sure if that was because I knew the answers or if that was because I was guessing. I had no idea if I felt like I failed or if I passed. My first day was mostly pharm, Ethics, pathology, peds, oral health management, anatomy and a couple of questions on prostho, perio and operative. I didn’t have any ortho questions on my exam. I went home that afternoon and did not study anything. I had a good dinner and went to bed early to rest up for day two. I HIGHLY recommend doing day one and two back to back if it is possible. You aren’t going to learn anything new in between the two days. You either know it or you don’t. Don't psych yourself out.

Day two going in I didn’t have the exam jitters anymore, and knew it would be a quick day, so I was honestly just ready to be done with the exam. I was praying that my second day wouldn’t be all prostho because that was one of my weakest subjects, and i was lucky to only have a couple of questions. I had pretty much all pharm and health management along with pathology again, but just with clinical sets. I took my one break on day two and left feeling relieved that i was finally done with the exam. I felt the same day after day two as i did day one “I have no clue how I did.” I got my results about 3 weeks after my test day in the morning and was so happy to see the passing result.

I can’t thank Bootcamp and Dr. Ryan enough for helping me get through a long and treacherous study process. There were even some questions on my exam that I had done in Bootcamp. I appreciate the layout and how easy it is to stay organized on the website! As long as you take advantage of all the materials out there and make sure you know the content well, it is totally a feasible exam! It is a long and grueling process but so worth it in the end!

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