Best Question Bank for the USMLE

A question bank will be arguably the most important part of preparing for the USMLE and similar medical licensing examinations. Most students will agree that active learning using question banks is what leads to the greatest improvement in test scores. While Usmle world (UWORLD) is the favorite question bank for most students, there are also a few other great question banks that can be used to supplement your exam preparation or can help you stay sharp during school exams.


#1 Usmle World — this is our first choice to help students prepare for the USMLE exams. What makes it stand out from other question banks is the quality and comprehensiveness of the explanations provided. The questions are continuously updated and of the highest quality. However, it is expensive and some students may not be able to complete the entire question bank before their scheduled exam date. We recommend an extended subscription to provide you with enough time to go through the question bank both during medical school and again during dedicated prep.


#2 Amboss Question bank and content — Amboss stands out from other question banks not only for its high quality questions, but also its extensive library of content. It can act as an all in one resource. The questions vary in difficulty from 1 hammer to 5 hammers, which is an interesting feature. It is also more affordable once you considering all that you are getting for the price.

Now, that the two main question banks have been discussed, the others are harder to rank, but can be used as additional sources of questions.


The book “First Aid for the USMLE step 1” is well known amongst medical students as an essential resource for preparing for that exam. However, the associated Usmle Rx question bank is not as popular for a few reasons. While the questions are plenty, they are not as well written as those found in UWORLD or Amboss and the explanations are not as good either. However, with a USMLE Rx subscription you will get access to the latest copy of First Aid as well as flashcards, questions, and other features. They often have sales for 50% or more off the subscription and the price is reasonable, making it a good additional resource for some students.

Kaplan Medical

The Kaplan USMLE review books, question banks and video review series are well known amongst international medical graduates (IMGs) studying abroad as well as medical students in the US. They provide a more comprehensive review and also offer in person review courses. However, the in-person courses and video courses can be very expensive. The question banks are affordable on their own, but their quality can’t compare to either UWORLD or Amboss. However, if you enjoy learning with videos or want in-person courses and can afford it, then they may be the right choice. The book series is available for those students needing a more in-depth review of topics, as they try to be comprehensive.

Rosh Review

Rosh Review offers an excellent question bank, however it perhaps caters best towards those doing clerkship and those preparing for board exams like the ABEM. It offers a wide variety of question banks including obesity medicine! The quality of the questions is good and we do recommend it for students during clinical rotations.