Introducing: Family Medicine on Firecracker

Posted by Nate Green on Nov 18, 2016 11:45:00 AM

We know that about 65% of Firecracker users will take the NBME Shelf exam for Family Medicine. This Shelf exam is unique in its scope: it covers all organ systems, all age ranges, and every common pathology. That represents a lot of material to absorb and retain while you’re running around the wards, caring for patients, and trying to get through your third year of medical school.

So, this fall Firecracker editors reviewed Firecracker’s content and the current NBME Family Medicine Shelf exam and put together our new Family Medicine Module. It includes a carefully curated subset of material from each of the subject areas relevant to the Family Medicine Shelf to ensure effective and ample coverage. We selected topics that are high-yield to give you the biggest benefit for your study time. This new module is now included with every Firecracker subscription, and current members can find it in the content drop down under Study Something Specific:

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How to use the Family Medicine Module

You will mark topics and go through review questions in the Family Medicine module the same way you mark and review in regular Firecracker. Your marking and review cadence should vary based on how much of the material you’ve covered and when you’re taking your Shelf. As soon as you cover a topic in school, mark it as ‘Current’ or ‘Past’, and it will be included in your Daily Review. If your test is coming up quickly, you can mark all the content to ensure you’re getting questions on every topic. (Note that if you want to study only Family Medicine you must unmark all other content in your Step 1 or Step 2 module.)

The Family Medicine Practice Shelf

As you reach the end of your preparation for the Shelf, you can take the Family Medicine practice Shelf to check your preparedness. Located in the Exams section of your Firecracker account, the Family Medicine practice Shelf exam is a timed, 100-question exam that is designed to mirror the actual NBME Family Medicine Shelf. At the end of the exam you’ll get your score, your relative performance, details on right and wrong answers, and remediation tasks that you can kick off immediately to help you improve your performance:

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How to Try it Out

The Family Medicine module is part of your Firecracker account; so if your account is active, log into Study Something Specific, choose it from the drop down, and check it out immediately. If your account is not current, you can contact us and we’ll reopen your account so you can try it for free. If you have feedback, we’d love to hear it: leave a comment on this post or write to us at And, if you haven't see it yet, check out this guide to preparing for your Family Medicine rotation from Van Krueger, one of our senior editors. 

Topics: USMLE Step 2 CK, Practice Exams, Family Medicine

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