The impact of a resident-run review curriculum and USMLE scores on the Otolaryngology in-service exam
Abstract Objective Describe the association of USMLE Step 1 scores and the institution of a dedicated board review curriculum with resident performance on the Otolaryngology training examination. Study design Retrospective cross sectional study. Methods We reviewed American Board of Otolaryngology Training Examination (OTE) scores for an otolaryngology residency program between 2005 and 2016. USMLE Step 1 scores were collected. In 2011 a resident-run OTE review curriculum was instituted with the goal of improving test preparation. Scores were compared before and after curriculum institution. Linear regression was performed to identify predictors of OTE scores. Results 47 residents were evaluated, 24 before and 23 after instituting the curriculum. There was a moderate correlation between USMLE step 1 scores and OTE scores for all years. For PGY-2 residents, mean OTE scores improved from 25th percentile to 41st percentile after institution of the review curriculum (p = 0.05). PGY 3–5 residents demonstrated no significant improvement. On multivariate linear regression, after controlling for USMLE step 1 scores, a dedicated board review curriculum predicted a 23-point percentile improvement in OTE scores for PGY-2 residents (p = 0.003). For other post-graduate years, the review curriculum did not predict score improvement. Conclusion USMLE step 1 scores are moderately correlated with OTE performance. A dedicated OTE review curriculum may improve OTE scores for PGY-2 residents, but such a curriculum may have less benefit for intermediate- and senior-level residents. Level of evidence 4.
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