Eligibility for the USMLE Steps
Step 1 and Step 2 CK
To be eligible, you must be in one of the following categories at the time you apply AND on the day of your examination:
- a medical student officially enrolled in, or a graduate of, a US or Canadian medical school program leading to the MD degree that is accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME), OR
- a medical student officially enrolled in, or a graduate of, a US medical school leading to the DO degree that is accredited by the Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA), OR
- a medical student officially enrolled in, or a graduate of, a medical school that is outside the US and Canada, listed in the World Directory of Medical Schools as meeting ECFMG eligibility requirements, and that meets other eligibility criteria of the ECFMG
If you are dismissed or withdraw(n) from medical school, you are not eligible for the USMLE, even if you are appealing the school’s decision or are otherwise contesting your status. If you are on a leave of absence, please check with the organization that registered you for your examination before submitting your application; if you have already registered, check before testing. Failure to notify the organization that registered you for your examination of your changed status may result in a determination that you engaged in irregular behavior and placement of a permanent annotation on your score reports and transcripts.
Eligibility requirements for Step 3 are:
- Passing scores on Step 1 and Step 2 CK, AND
- An MD degree or the DO degree from an LCME- or COCA-accredited US or Canadian medical school, OR the equivalent of the MD degree from a medical school outside the US and Canada that is listed in the World Directory of Medical Schools as meeting ECFMG eligibility requirements and obtain ECFMG Certification, AND
- Meet all other eligibility criteria as listed in the USMLE Bulletin of Information
The USMLE program recommends that, for Step 3 eligibility, applicants should have completed, or be near completion of, at least one postgraduate training year in an accredited US graduate medical education program that meets state board licensing requirements.
If you have attempted a Step four or more times, including incomplete attempts, and have not passed, you are ineligible to apply for any Step in the USMLE exam sequence. Attempts at the formerly administered Step 2 CS count toward the limit.