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August 13, 2023

Hi everyone,

This week, let’s pause the “In Pursuit of Excellence” series to discuss the In Training Exam (ITE), which most categorical residents are about to take.*

The ITE is a test of your internal medicine knowledge. The results have no bearing on promotion, graduation, or board eligibility. Results in specific areas should guide your studies. Scores are compared nationally to peers at your PGY level, yielding a percentile. In my experience, residents who consistently score above the 50th percentile will easily pass the ABIM Boards.

The test covers common problems like hypertension, diabetes, hyperlipidemia, UTIs, back pain, and cirrhosis. It also covers problems you may not have seen yet, like thyroid nodules, newly diagnosed lung cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, and lupus. The best way to prepare is to attend teaching conferences, read about your patients, and use resources like MKSAP.

The ITE is low stakes, so please don’t stress over it. Historically, most of our residents do well, averaging at about the 70th percentile with several exceeding the 90th percentile. If your score is lower, for example under the 40th percentile, don’t worry: results consistently improve with effective study plans, usually created in collaboration with your APD, sometimes with input from Dr. Jack Contessa, a talented education specialist in our GME office.

Everyone can do well on the ITE; you just need to read, attend teaching conferences, and learn from your patients, which most of you are already doing.

Enjoy your sunny Sunday, everyone. I’m back from vacation and look forward to seeing you soon. In Pursuit of Excellence returns next week.


*PGY3s who scored at or above the 70th percentile as a PGY2 are excused.

Pictures from our trip:

Submitted by Mark David Siegel on August 13, 2023