The Step 1 Self-Assessment: How to Read Your Score Report

Sophie Moran - Mar 06, 2020
An illustration depicting two doctors look at the score report from the AMBOSS USMLE® Step 1 Self-Assessment.

That’s it! The annual AMBOSS USMLE® Step 1 Self-Assessment Week is finished for another year. Almost 10,000 students completed the self-assessment and have now received a score report that includes a 3-digit score prediction, performance breakdown, and personalized study recommendations. 

To help you navigate your Step 1 Self-Assessment Score Report, we’ve put together this handy guide. It includes explanations of all of its sections so you can analyze your performance and be as prepared as you can be when test day arrives. 





Your 3-digit score 

At the top of your score report, you’ll find your 3-digit score. Just like in the real Step 1 exam, the theoretical score range is 1-300. The mean score of the entire cohort of AMBOSS USMLE® Step 1 Self-Assessment-takers is 214 with a standard deviation of 22. The time until the test-taker’s actual Step 1 exam is considered in the calibration of the 3-digit score prediction.

It’s important to keep in mind that AMBOSS can only provide an estimated Step 1 score. Your 3-digit score is not intended to predict your performance on the actual exam, but rather to identify your relative strengths and weaknesses. 

If you did not complete all four blocks of the self-assessment, you will not receive a 3-digit score.*

3-digit score and percentile rankingYour percentile ranking

The percentile ranking is based on the relative performance of all participants that completed the AMBOSS USMLE® Step 1 Self-Assessment, which is almost 10,000 users. The mean of the entire cohort is 214 and this is the value from which your percentile ranking is calibrated. 

High-yield topics you should focus on 

Based on your performance on the self-assessment, we’ve selected the topics you need to focus on the most before you take the actual Step 1 exam. 

You will find a personalized Qbank session that is designed to address your weak points from the self-assessment. You can dive right in and target the areas you need to focus on or, if you don’t feel quite ready for that, you can review your self-assessment answers, and see what you got right and what you got wrong. High-yield topics

Relative strengths and weaknesses

Your score report includes your relative strengths and weaknesses, always based on your performance on the self-assessment. These are broken down by discipline and organ system. They include a percentage that represents how often each item appears on the exam and shows how you performed in each area. 

Your performance results are categorized by “Lower,” “Same,” and “Higher,” which is the same format that appears on the actual USMLE® score report. These results are based on your overall performance in the self-assessment. The areas you performed best in will be reflected in the ‘Higher’ section while the areas you performed least well in will be in the ‘Lower’ section. Strengths and weaknesses

How you performed compared to other self-assessment-takers

The bar chart you see on the score report shows the relative performance of the self-assessment-takers from the US and Canada who are about to take the USMLE® Step 1 exam. This subcohort has a mean of 230 with a standard deviation of 19.Bar chart

*Didn’t complete the self-assessment? You’ll still get a report

If you did not complete the full self-assessment, you’ll still receive a personalized report. This report is based on the number of questions you answered and the results of those questions.

Don’t worry if you didn’t finish all four blocks. There are plenty of other Step 1 resources that will help you confidently prepare for the exam. Check out our Step 1 study plans or create a custom Qbank session that will give you the guidance you need. 

Congratulations on getting to this milestone in your Step 1 studies If you have more questions about your score report, please email us at