The Counseling Services is designed to provide students with assistance and guidance in further preparation for the NBME Comprehensive Basic Science Exam (CBSE), with the ultimate goal of passing the USMLE Step 1. This is not a review program or a tutoring service, but a counseling service provided by medical graduates (M.D.) who have passed the USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 exams. This service will include the following: 

• Individual review of NBME performance with recommendations to improve performance on the next attempts. Students are paired with a counselor who will analyze the student's previous NBME attempts and help the student to improve on subsequent attempts of the CBSE and/or Step 1 exam. This can include working with the student to develop schedules, manage resources, work through problematic areas the student may be facing, mentoring through the board exam and senior student process, and more, based on the needs of the student

 • Videos on cases and high-yield topics and questions in which most students struggle as well as study tips, how to read questions, and more!

 • Counseling on best examination preparation practices, study habits, test anxiety, and “words of wisdom” from students who recently passed

 • Moderated discussion boards on specific topics and issues students are facing passing the NBME CBSE 

• Centralized access to resources, both internal and external, on specific subjects and topics which students find challenging 

• Participation in the School’s Question Formulation Exercise (QFE), where students are going to be asked to put together USMLE Style questions. By learning to write these questions, the students will be less likely to fall into common traps set by the test writers of the USMLE because they will have a better understanding of how test writers trick students and how to look for these traps in questions

 • Possibility to participate in online tutoring to other students on different topics. Similar to the QFE, this exercise is based on the research-backed idea that you learn something more quickly and more completely by engaging in the learning process and teaching others

• Provide students with regular access to a medical school graduate/counselor who has completed the USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 exams.

 o Please note that students will not have access to your private and confidential information, only the counselors (who are M.D. and employed by the Office of the Dean of Clinical Sciences) will have access to your information.

 Eligibility for the Counseling Services Program

All students are eligible for Counseling Services starting from MD1. Students will need to initiate contact with the counselors, and it is their prerogative and responsibility to create, maintain, and show up for the counseling sessions. We strongly encourage students who are in MD5 to avail the of Counselling services. 


If a student successfully completes a grade level and progresses to the next grade level at SJSM, this service is FREE. The cost of counselling is a $5,000 one-time fee, which is not charged to students who have successfully passed the NBME CBSE and subsequently the USMLE Step 1 exam. Fees are not required to be paid unless enrollment is terminated. In the event a student leaves the school, fees will then be deducted from any refund owed. 

Enrollment into Services

Enrollment into Counseling Services is done automatically by the school once one of the eligibility requirements has been met. At that point, you will receive further instructions at that time how to participate.

 A student may voluntarily receive counseling services if they wish when preparing for the NBME CBSE and/or the USMLE Step 1 exam by contacting one of the school's USMLE Counselors. 

Counseling Services are also available for the NBME Comprehensive Clinical Science Exam (CCSE)/and or the USMLE Step 2 CK exams, please contact a USMLE Counselor for more information. 

Getting in Contact with a USMLE Counselor For more information on getting started with counseling services a student may contact the USMLE Counselor by emailing or by calling (847)-375-0543