- From May 2020 Step 2 CS is suspended and wont be continued in the future.
- The Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) and NBME, co-sponsors of the United States Medical Licensing Examination® (USMLE®), have announced the discontinuation of work to relaunch a modified Step 2 Clinical Skills examination (Step 2 CS).
- Following the May 2020 suspension of Step 2 CS due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the board announced their intention to take 12-18 months to bring back a modified Step 2 CS exam that was appreciably better than the prior assessment. After reviewing current and anticipated progress with the exam and in consideration of the rapidly evolving medical education, practice and technology landscapes, the board have decided to discontinue Step 2 CS. The board have no plans to bring back Step 2 CS, but the board intend to take this opportunity to focus on working with their colleagues in medical education and at the state medical boards to determine innovative ways to assess clinical skills.
- Independent standardized assessments of medical knowledge and clinical skills are important inputs for state medical licensure decisions. In the absence of Step 2 CS, elements of clinical reasoning and communication will continue to be assessed on other exams (Steps) in the USMLE sequence. Computer-based case simulations in Step 3 and communication content recently bolstered in Step 1 are examples of these efforts that will continue. While not a replacement for Step 2 CS, these formats continue to contribute positively, e.g., measuring critical knowledge of medical communication.
- The change in direction will allow them to take additional time to partner with the medical education and medical board community to better develop innovative ways to assess the breadth of clinical skills in medicine.
For questions about the Step 2 CS discontinuation and any other USMLE-related inquiries please contact the USMLE support team: https://www.usmle.org/contact/