Monday, May 19, 2014

Step 1

Take your score sheet and evaluate the areas you did well and did poorly. This is done by getting your score report online at the NCCPA website. It is broken down by body system and by task area. The key is to look at the body system area for your weaknesses.
Make a table like the examples below.

FYI it is most likely in both of these examples the PA passed the exam, it is for illustration only on how to separate the numbers.

PA student table completed example


PA re-certifying table completed example

 Step 2

Now that you have completed your table, use it to find the areas you need to focus your studies.  Our key areas to study will be Cardiology, Pulmonology, Musculoskeletal, and EENT.  I will consider Dermatology if I have time.  Those 4 are a potential 57 points lost with studying maybe recoup half those points and you pass.  Add Dermatology overview with a light highlights of Endocrinology and Neurology and your score improves even more.

Of special note: While studying Orthopedics focus on the Rheumatologic section (about half the questions from Orthopedics come from Rheumatology subjects.  If you are short of time while studying Dermatology, focus on buzz words (Christmas tree rash etc.).

Step 3

Since you failed PANCE or PANRE, you have to wait 90 days.  Take a week off from the exam and get your mind in order.  Now that you have a list of the subjects you need to study, a review course can help.  The HELP PANCE PANRE review let's you choose exactly what you need to study.  We break each section down with a focused review, great videos and almost 5000 review questions to test your improvement.  Click here to try our review for free. 

Other considerations:

The charts above help you focus on the core data you may need to study.  This is only one of the thing which can stand in the way of your success.  Take some time to account for the other factors listed below:

Key associations:  Key associations can help you remember core data, lead you to an answer and help differentiate the main pints in the stem of a question.  Examples of key associations are "peri-hilar lymphadenopathy and sarcoidosis", "Moon face, buffalo hump and cushinoid syndromes"  There are over 1600 key associations in the HELP PANCE PANRE online PA Exam review Cram Cards.

Navigating the format of the PANCE PANRE questions:  Understanding the way in which the questions themselves are written and how to break down the keys in the stem, the distractors and the answer will improve your success.  HELP PANCE PANRE has mock questions written by former NCCPA test item writers in formats which teach you how to deal with this question format. 
 Click here for an article about how PANCE and PANRE questions are written.

Timing:  The PANCE and PANRE are both broken down into sections of 60 questions in 60 minutes, that's one minute per question.  Make sure you have this timing down.  You don't want to finish in 45 minutes but rush and do poorly, or have the time run out when you are on question number 45.  Practicing timing is important.  HELP PANCE PANRE has 10 timed 60 question mock exams.