Since the release of the White Coat Companion a few weeks ago, one commonly asked question has been, “How does this book fit within my study plans?” In this post, I hope to describe how the book was designed, and how we envision it will guide your studying.
When studying for Step 1, you likely used three key groups of resources. One was a primary syllabus text, which is typically First Aid for Step 1. The second were video resources, most likely Boards & Beyond and Pathoma. And the third was a question bank, which was UWorld. This triad of resources, along with some supplements and variations, makes up the vast majority of study plans for Step 1.
As noted in our foreword, when looking through Step 2 and Step 3 resources, there was no foundational text quite comparable to First Aid for Step 1. The resources that existed were often out of date, non-comprehensive, and lacked clarity and concision.
Our hope is that WCC is able to form the foundation of your clerkship and Step 2 studying. It provides you a blueprint for all the topics that you need to know about for core clerkships. The book is concise— we tried to use as absolute few words as possible while still covering all important details. This means that the book is not going to help you develop understanding. The book does not go in depth to explain difficult topics or concepts. Rather, it contains pure facts and knowledge. It is the foundation of the pyramid, similar to First Aid was for Step 1.
In an ideal study plan, you use WCC as the roadmap for your studies. When you encounter a new topic in WCC, you would use all the resources that you would have otherwise used to learn about the topic. For Step 2, this includes UWorld, online video resources, up-to-date, and other more in-depth textbooks (and in the near future, Boards and Beyond!). As you start to develop an understanding of the topic, you can annotate and take notes in WCC. As you start to cover all the topics during a rotation, WCC will transform into your own study guide, which you can then use as review for the shelf exam.
I hope that this gives you an idea of how WCC can fit into your own current study plans— particularly for those of you who value a single, comprehensive resource to serve as the primary syllabus of your studies.