Certification by the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) is obtained by passing Steps 1, 2, and 3 of the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE).
Step 1 is a one-day, computer-administered, multiple choice examination focusing on applying the basic medical sciences to the practice of medicine. Passage of USMLE Step 1 is required before continuing on to the clinical years or MD/PhD program.
Step 2 CK is a one-day multiple choice examination which covers the clinical knowledge and must be taken after both the successful competion of all core clerkships and achievement of the recommended minimum passing score on all NBME subject exams.
USMLE Step CS is a clinical skills exam involving standardized patients.
Step 3 tests additional aspects of clinical competence and is usually taken after completing one year of residency. It is offered by the State Board of Medicine and given at Prometric Testing Centers. Licensure is dependent on passing all prior steps of the USMLE.