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More questions than anyone else

Most Comprehensive USMLE® Step 1 Exam QBank

more questions than anyone else

We've partnered with over 3,705 physicians to write questions that accurately simulate the USMLE Step 1 Exam. Each problem includes a full medical explanation with succinct teaching points. That's more content than all of our competitors combined.

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Focus On The Content You Need

Our assessment tests replicate the experience of taking the actual Step 1 Exam. You'll understand your performance and then have the resources necessary to improve your test scores and medical expertise.

Pinpoint Weakness

Evaluate categories of test questions in anatomical & clinical sciences that you need to improve to raise your score.

Compare Yourself

Stay competitive by understanding how your test scores compare to your peers.

Understand Errors

In-depth explanations and teaching points backed up by 4,925 peer-reviewed PubMed articles.

Constantly Updated

Questions and explanations are updated frequently so you’re up-to-date.

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Score higher on the USMLE

Dramatically Improve Your Performance

Breeze through test day by studying a set of questions developed by over 3,705 medical professionals with a special emphasis on the mechanisms underlying disease, health, and modes of therapy.

  • Simulates USMLE Step 1
  • Frequently Updated
  • Unlimited QBank Access
  • Thorough Explanations
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Master Every Part of the Assessment

Generate Practice Quizzes

One click will automatically build a practice quiz in topics you need the most work to master.

Rank Your Performance

See how you did on a specific category of questions on the USMLE Step 1 Q-Bank compared with everyone else who took the test.

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Create Custom Practice Tests

Generate practice quizzes with over 6,000 questions. Choose from 4 different difficulty levels, Pick from 25 areas of Anatomic Science, Pick from 25 areas of Clinical Science and a full MOCK USMLE Step 1 test

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Thorough Explanations

Become a better professional with answer explanations and articles that enable you to master the material.

Test Exams & Unlimited Quizzes

Assess where your strong and generate practice questions where you are weak.

Frequent Updates

Questions and teaching points are continuously updated.

Performance Reports

Actionable information on where to improve.

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USMLE Step 1

The USMLE Step 1 is very well covered in Pastest, the progressive system is world class medical learning, starting from an understanding of the basic science processes and progressing to actual USMLE level questions. I have noticed a big improvement in my medical knowledge since I subscribed to Pastest and I use it almost everyday. It is also the best priced USMLE Q bank, more affordable than Amboss, USMLE Rx and UWorld, even a year with Pastest is cheaper than a month of Amboss. The best advice I can give is get Pastest for 1 year of dedicated and in the last 3 months get UWorld and you will be ready to score 260+.

Desi Pardesi

After taking my USMLE Step 1 and receiving my score, I realized that my success was attributed to the Pastest Qbank. Pastest provided case based questions that simulated actual test day questions and the wide range of questions prepared me for the topics on the USMLE Step 1. I would highly recommend the Pastest Qbank for medical students completing their school courses and studying for USMLE Step 1

Connor Zale, Penn State College of Medicine

100% recommend. It's a very easy to understand concept. Gold, every student should try it.

Ines Latroche, Med Student

Extremely useful Qbank that helps you get used to the question format and the clinical vignettes. The progressive system helps you fill some gaps in your knowledge depending on the topic of your choice. The pricing is reasonable and the staff are very eager to help and to clarify your questions.

Vladimir Filip

Easy to use and logic-provoking questions! Attractive, intuitive interface - a good array of questions - I would say one of the more challenging question banks for the go-getters. Highly recommend!

Arber Frakulli, Harvard Medical School

First off, I regret that I didn't take advantage of this awesome Qbank when I had the opportunity to use it entirely free for a whole year ;) My journey with Pastest in studying for the Step 1 exam had been great. The interface per se is excellent. With respect to its contents, it covers the most frequently tested materials on the exam except that I noticed biochem and genetics weren't well covered in the version I used. Overall, it is a great resource and it is the only Qbank I actually used for my Step 1 prep. Everybody has his/her choice, but I'd strongly recommend it.

J. Esdras Louis

The PROGRESSIVE System is AWESOME! I exactly got what I wanted with that! In depth knowledge of all the dimensions of a case and all the possible questions in one platform!

Vedant Desai, New York Medical College

Preparing using the online materials really helped me get a score of 260.

Jishanth Mattumpuram

...such a good resource for learning material for USMLE Step 1. Would recommend to anyone! Also I have submitted feedback a couple of times on questions, and the response was really fast!

Cecilia Huang, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

Great answer explanations, great mobile format. I haven't tried other USMLE practice programs like UWorld yet, but I used Pastest for my cardiac disease unit and it was perfect.

Julie Clemmensen, Touro University, California

It's a really good resource for Step 1 USMLE. The way questions are asked and the explanation for all the answers (even the wrong ones) make your learning so much better than Uworld.

Evelyne Lemay

The Progressive questions for cases were a great way to learn concepts that are high yield.

Med Student, University of Alabama School of Medicine

Honestly, it helped me a lot! Besides the well-organized and well-written Qbank, they have also developed a “progressive” system that is GOLD, when you are trying to adjust easily to the mindset of pathology. I used it between physio and path, and it has helped me a lot!

Ana Gelbesi

I have really enjoyed using the program, and am excited about the Progressive capabilities of the platform. The usability is great, and the questions are realistic and challenging, making this a super applicable resource for Step 1 study! Thank you!

Lori Russell, Med Student

I like the question bank and the Progressive way of learning is excellent. I haven't taken Step 1 yet...but it definitely feels like I am learning important information in an effective way.

Med Student, Georgetown University School of Medicine

Their Progressive System was an EXCELLENT resource for mastering content. I truly loved how it started with more simpler, basic questions and progressed to more integrative content that really tested if you mastered the material or not. Sometimes you can passively learn and not truly understand and this system ensured that you had a deeper understanding of the topic. I would absolutely recommend Pastest as a study resource!

Jasmeka McCord, Florida State University College of Medicine

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USMLE Step 1 Basics: Format & Content Breakdown

USMLE Step 1 Basics

The USMLE Step 1 is taken at the end of the second year of medical school. It is used to assess your understanding and ability to apply the important core concepts of the sciences learned in medical school years 1 and 2.

Your ability to pass Step 1 ensures the foundation has been laid for your safe and competent practice of medicine both now and in the future.

Content Covered on the USMLE Step 1

USMLE Step 1 is a multiple-choice test covering the following subjects:

  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Biochemistry
  • Pharmacology
  • Pathology
  • Microbiology
  • Behavioral sciences
  • Interdisciplinary topics: nutrition, genetics, aging, ethics, and others

The Format of Questions on Step 1

USMLE Step 1 is a test that typically requires multiple steps of reasoning/knowledge in each question. The test questions will often require you to perform one or more of the following tasks:

  • Interpret graphic and tabular material
  • Identify gross and microscopic pathologic and normal specimens
  • Apply basic science knowledge to clinical problems

Step 1 Breakdown: Content Covered


    • 25-35% General Principles
    • 65-75% Individual Organ Systems
      • hematopoietic/lymphoreticularUSMLE Step 1 Basics: Format & Content Breakdown
      • nervous/special senses
      • skin/connective tissue
      • musculoskeletal
      • respiratory
      • cardiovascular
      • gastrointestinal
      • renal/urinary
      • reproductive
      • endocrine
      • immune


    • 20-30% Normal Structure and function
    • 40-50% Abnormal processes
    • 15-25% Principles of therapeutics
    • 10-20% Psychosocial, cultural, occupational, and environmental considerations

More on USMLE Step 1 Question Formats

USMLE Step 1 utilizes several different test question formats. These include:

  • Single One Best Answer
    • This test question format is the traditional format used in all tests. There is a question and only one correct answer to choose.
  • Sequential Item Sets
    • Patient vignettes are the go-to test question format for most of your tests here on out. The vignette will give you the story of a patient, followed by one or several questions. Sequential Item Sets are multiple questions following a vignette.

TIP: When reading through the question, try to formulate an answer in your head prior to reading the available answers. The selection of available answers may play tricks on you and point you in the wrong direction.

How Long is the USMLE Step 1?

The USMLE Step 1 consists of up to 280 multiple-choice test questions. These questions are divided into seven 60-minute blocks over an 8 hour day. That means, to complete all the answers, you can spend between one and two minutes per question.

Step 1 Testing Locations

The USMLE Step 1 is a computer-based test that is administered by Prometric Services.

Applying to Take Step 1

There are two pathways to apply for the USMLE Step 1 exam, depending on if you are a U.S. or Canadian student or not. Check out the USMLE Application Page to get started.

How Long Does It Take to Get Your Step 1 Score Back?

The typical score reporting time for the USMLE Step 1 exam is 4 weeks.

Step 1 Test Prep: It’s All About the QBanks

Now we get to the good stuff! Ask 100 medical students how they studied for Step 1, and you’ll get one answer (bet you weren’t expecting that).

Beyond the obvious expert knowledge that you will have from the first two years of medical school, question banks (Qbanks) are the key to rocking Step 1. The majority of medical students use some sort of Qbank for their Step 1 test preparation.

Which one? That all depends! Each Qbank has pros and cons. Here is a short list of a few test prep companies:

A Podcast to Help You Prepare for Your Boards

Check out the Board Rounds podcast for helpful information and practice as you’re working toward your Step 1 exam date!

The Mindset You Need for Step 1 Preparation

The preparation for the USMLE Step 1 begins the first day you step foot on your medical school campus. That doesn’t mean you begin studying for it on day one. But it’s an always-present motivation driving you in the first two years of medical school.

What I’m talking about is a mindset. Understand that Step 1 is one of the biggest factors in your residency application. A solid foundation of core science knowledge will allow you to get the most out of your Qbank studying at the end of your second year.

So build good study habits from day one. Don’t get too far behind. Don’t cram! If you cram, the information won’t stick long-term. Then you’ll have to re-learn more during your dedicated Step-1 studying period. Build a solid foundation with your classes. There is a reason The Tortoise and the Hare is an everlasting fable in our society.

Up-to-date Information on Step 1

The information presented on this page is taken from the official USMLE website. Please visit for updated information.

Links and Other Resources


90-Minute USMLE Step 1 Drill Session (300 USMLE questions)

USMLE Step 1 Practice

The USMLE Step 1 Exam is the first board exam you take during medical school that is sponsored by the Federation of State Medical Boards and the National Board of Medical Examiners. Start off on the right foot by taking your studying seriously and being consistent with taking USMLE Step 1 practice questions.

Here are four free sample questions for the BoardVitals USMLE Step 1 question bank.

How did you do? Whether you were right where you thought you’d be, or you faltered a little, you’re well on your way to acing your exam by simply trying your hand at these.

The USMLE Step 1 Exam is administered over the course of one day consisting of seven 60-minute sessions. Each session will have 40 or fewer questions. The following topics are found on this exam:

  • Gross Anatomy and Embryology: 11-15%
  • Behavioral Sciences: 8-15%
  • Biochemistry and Nutrition: 14-24%
  • Microbiology: 10-15%
  • Pathology: 44-52%
  • Pharmacology: 15-22%
  • Physiology: 25-35%
  • Genetics: 5-9%
  • Immunology: 6-11%
  • Histology and Cell Biology: 8-13%

For a more detailed breakdown of what content areas to expect on the exam, please refer to the USMLE Step 1 Content Outline and Specifications.

BoardVitals provides a USMLE Step 1 Question Bank which has more than 3,150 USMLE Step 1 practice questions targeted to the exam. These questions are written in the same format found on the exam and are accompanied by detailed explanations and rationales explaining all correct and incorrect responses, thus serving as a “mini-lecture” for a comprehensive understanding of the topic. Each of the categories found on the exam is covered by the BoardVitals bank and will provide you with hands-on experience for what to expect on the testing day. Want more practice? Click here for a free trial.


1 questions step


The Comprehensive Basic Science Self-Assessment is a practice test designed for students planning to take the USMLE Step 1. It features multiple-choice questions on content typically covered during basic science medical education courses.

In addition to helping you gain a familiarity with NBME-style questions, the Comprehensive Basic Science Self-Assessment enables you to:

  • Evaluate your readiness to take the USMLE Step 1
  • Target your studies using diagnostic feedback highlighting areas of strength and weakness
  • View answer explanations to reinforce your knowledge and maximize study time
  • Use your self-assessment score to estimate your approximate score on the USMLE score scale


There are multiple forms available for the Comprehensive Basic Science Self-Assessment, each containing 200 multiple-choice questions. 

You can choose to take your self-assessment in either a standard-paced or self-paced format.

  • The standard-paced option mimics a live testing environment and contains four sections of 50 questions. You have up to 1 hour and 15 minutes to complete each section.
  • The self-paced option also contains four sections of 50 questions, but allows you up to 5 hours to complete each section.

Accessing Your Self-Assessment

Self-Assessments are delivered through the MyNBMESM Examinee Portal. You must log in to MyNBME to access a self-assessment and complete it within 90 days. You may sign off and resume/continue your self-assessment at any time during the 90 day period.


The Comprehensive Basic Science Self-Assessment is available for $60. Visit the How to Purchase section to learn more about purchasing a self-assessment. 

90-Minute USMLE Step 1 Drill Session (300 USMLE questions)

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