TCOM students top their peers nationally on licensing tests

Again this year, students in the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine (TCOM) excelled on physician licensing exams.

Recently released mean scores show that for five consecutive years, TCOM students have ranked first, second or third in the nation on Levels 1 and 2 of the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners‘ COMLEX-USA exams.

The COMLEX-USA, or Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examination, is the recognized pathway to licensure for osteopathic physicians in the United States and in a number of international jurisdictions. 

"We are pleased to see that the rigors of our degree program and advanced instructional design are preparing our students for success," said Don Peska, DO, MEd, TCOM Dean and Professor.

Students take Level 1, which covers the basic processes of health and disease, after the second year of medical school.

Level 2, taken after the third year, has two parts: cognitive evaluation, which is based on problems and symptoms and covers decision-making; and performance evaluation, a seven-hour test in which students examine 12 standardized patients (actors trained to present symptoms).  

Level 3 comes after students start their residency program and covers the clinical disciplines including emergency medicine, family medicine, internal medicine, OB/Gyn, osteopathic principles, pediatrics, psychiatry and surgery.  

"This consistent level of performance is why TCOM graduates remain highly competitive for residency programs around the state of Texas and around the country," Peska said.

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