oral boards preparation

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2
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16 Aug 2017

For all those that passed the written qualification examinations, congratulations!!!
 Now on to Oral Boards!
 I've heard from multiple sources that ophthoquestions was probably the best source for studying for the WQE, and I was wondering what have people heard about preparing for the Oral Boards? Some have mentioned the Osler Oral Review Board course and I've heard good reviews, but perhaps to the creators of Ophthoquestions, what would you recommend as your go to source for Oral Boards? Thanks

#1 23 May 2018 at 09:28 PM
Wizard of OQ
Creator of Worlds
Messages:
29
Joined:
09 Aug 2011

This is a tough question to answer as there does not seem to be one single "go to" source that people use.  

The main utility of the Osler course are the mock oral sessions where you basically are pimped in a simulated session by a mock oral examiner.  These sessions can be in "private" (i.e. one-on-one with the examiner -- which costs more $$) or "public" (i.e. performed in front of the rest of the course attendees).  They typically give you some public sessions included in the registration fee.  The biggest downside of the Osler course is the price tag (~$720).

I've heard relatively good things about the Pemberton book (https://www.amazon.com/Second-Ophthalmology-Clinical-Vignettes-Board/dp/0692401830) which is basically a list of different cases with organized responses.  This book was not around when I prepping for my oral boards, but maybe others can chime in here.

Many people just use the Wills' Manual as an outline for information, and this is actually a relatively high-yield way of organizing your information.

(Btw, I have zero financial incentive regarding any of these prep materials)

One thing you have to realize is that the oral boards is not really about knowledge.  Everyone who has passed the WQE will have the requisite knowledge base to pass the oral boards.  It is all about delivering a coherent monologue/soliloquy about a case that includes all of the requisite elements they are looking for.  This is best done with a partner who can listen to you and simulate the oral exam experience... and then give you feedback on what points you missed...or where you sounded incoherent.

Apropos to this thread, a stranger reached out to me last year to help him pass his oral boards.  He had failed the oral boards twice, meaning that if he failed it again, he would be forced to take the WQE over again!  So we basically interacted over video conferencing and I would present standardized cases to him.  At the beginning of our sessions, he was completely all over the place, jumping from a description of the image to the differential diagnosis, to the treatment, back to the differential diagnosis, etc.  In other words, though he possessed all of the requisite knowledge, his "speech" was not well-prepared, smooth, or organized.  Said differently, I understood why he failed the oral exam multiple times.  So my basic message to him was:  "You just have to have a canned speech for all of the common scenarios they are going to present to you so that it is purely reflex and you don't have to think about anything." 

So we practiced regularly... he steadily improved...and voila, he passed!  It was a significant time commitment, and yes, he paid me for my time.  But I definitely did not do it for the $ since one can make that fee in about 2 days of work in private practice.  Instead, I did it mainly as an experiment to see if I could help basically anyone pass the oral exam.  Perhaps, if there is any interest, I'll post some of the "standardized speeches" on this forum.

Anyways, the summary of all of this is basically you just need to practice giving a coherent speech in front of someone about common ophthlamic clinical scenarios.

Hope that helps!  
#2 25 May 2018 at 03:56 AM
Messages:
1
Joined:
08 Oct 2015

Wizard of OQ
This is a tough question to answer as there does not seem to be one single "go to" source that people use.  

The main utility of the Osler course are the mock oral sessions where you basically are pimped in a simulated session by a mock oral examiner.  These sessions can be in "private" (i.e. one-on-one with the examiner -- which costs more $$) or "public" (i.e. performed in front of the rest of the course attendees).  They typically give you some public sessions included in the registration fee.  The biggest downside of the Osler course is the price tag (~$720).

I've heard relatively good things about the Pemberton book (https://www.amazon.com/Second-Ophthalmology-Clinical-Vignettes-Board/dp/0692401830) which is basically a list of different cases with organized responses.  This book was not around when I prepping for my oral boards, but maybe others can chime in here.

Many people just use the Wills' Manual as an outline for information, and this is actually a relatively high-yield way of organizing your information.

(Btw, I have zero financial incentive regarding any of these prep materials)

One thing you have to realize is that the oral boards is not really about knowledge.  Everyone who has passed the WQE will have the requisite knowledge base to pass the oral boards.  It is all about delivering a coherent monologue/soliloquy about a case that includes all of the requisite elements they are looking for.  This is best done with a partner who can listen to you and simulate the oral exam experience... and then give you feedback on what points you missed...or where you sounded incoherent.

Apropos to this thread, a stranger reached out to me last year to help him pass his oral boards.  He had failed the oral boards twice, meaning that if he failed it again, he would be forced to take the WQE over again!  So we basically interacted over video conferencing and I would present standardized cases to him.  At the beginning of our sessions, he was completely all over the place, jumping from a description of the image to the differential diagnosis, to the treatment, back to the differential diagnosis, etc.  In other words, though he possessed all of the requisite knowledge, his "speech" was not well-prepared, smooth, or organized.  Said differently, I understood why he failed the oral exam multiple times.  So my basic message to him was:  "You just have to have a canned speech for all of the common scenarios they are going to present to you so that it is purely reflex and you don't have to think about anything." 

So we practiced regularly... he steadily improved...and voila, he passed!  It was a significant time commitment, and yes, he paid me for my time.  But I definitely did not do it for the $ since one can make that fee in about 2 days of work in private practice.  Instead, I did it mainly as an experiment to see if I could help basically anyone pass the oral exam.  Perhaps, if there is any interest, I'll post some of the "standardized speeches" on this forum.

Anyways, the summary of all of this is basically you just need to practice giving a coherent speech in front of someone about common ophthlamic clinical scenarios.

Hope that helps!  
Thank you! This is a great overview. Of course we would appreciate it :) 
#3 08 Jun 2018 at 09:43 AM
Messages:
2
Joined:
16 Aug 2017

Wizard of OQ
This is a tough question to answer as there does not seem to be one single "go to" source that people use.  

The main utility of the Osler course are the mock oral sessions where you basically are pimped in a simulated session by a mock oral examiner.  These sessions can be in "private" (i.e. one-on-one with the examiner -- which costs more $$) or "public" (i.e. performed in front of the rest of the course attendees).  They typically give you some public sessions included in the registration fee.  The biggest downside of the Osler course is the price tag (~$720).

I've heard relatively good things about the Pemberton book (https://www.amazon.com/Second-Ophthalmology-Clinical-Vignettes-Board/dp/0692401830) which is basically a list of different cases with organized responses.  This book was not around when I prepping for my oral boards, but maybe others can chime in here.

Many people just use the Wills' Manual as an outline for information, and this is actually a relatively high-yield way of organizing your information.

(Btw, I have zero financial incentive regarding any of these prep materials)

One thing you have to realize is that the oral boards is not really about knowledge.  Everyone who has passed the WQE will have the requisite knowledge base to pass the oral boards.  It is all about delivering a coherent monologue/soliloquy about a case that includes all of the requisite elements they are looking for.  This is best done with a partner who can listen to you and simulate the oral exam experience... and then give you feedback on what points you missed...or where you sounded incoherent.

Apropos to this thread, a stranger reached out to me last year to help him pass his oral boards.  He had failed the oral boards twice, meaning that if he failed it again, he would be forced to take the WQE over again!  So we basically interacted over video conferencing and I would present standardized cases to him.  At the beginning of our sessions, he was completely all over the place, jumping from a description of the image to the differential diagnosis, to the treatment, back to the differential diagnosis, etc.  In other words, though he possessed all of the requisite knowledge, his "speech" was not well-prepared, smooth, or organized.  Said differently, I understood why he failed the oral exam multiple times.  So my basic message to him was:  "You just have to have a canned speech for all of the common scenarios they are going to present to you so that it is purely reflex and you don't have to think about anything." 

So we practiced regularly... he steadily improved...and voila, he passed!  It was a significant time commitment, and yes, he paid me for my time.  But I definitely did not do it for the $ since one can make that fee in about 2 days of work in private practice.  Instead, I did it mainly as an experiment to see if I could help basically anyone pass the oral exam.  Perhaps, if there is any interest, I'll post some of the "standardized speeches" on this forum.

Anyways, the summary of all of this is basically you just need to practice giving a coherent speech in front of someone about common ophthlamic clinical scenarios.

Hope that helps!  
Thanks for the well-written response. OphthoQuestions is the best source for the WQE and you guys have provided such a great resource!
#4 09 Jul 2018 at 04:08 PM
Wizard of OQ
Creator of Worlds
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Jon Snow.1
Thanks for the well-written response. OphthoQuestions is the best source for the WQE and you guys have provided such a great resource!
Appreciate the vote of confidence :-)

Why not upload a nice avatar photo?  We are trying to spice up this website!
#5 10 Jul 2018 at 12:39 AM
Messages:
2
Joined:
31 Oct 2017

Wizard of OQ
This is a tough question to answer as there does not seem to be one single "go to" source that people use.  

The main utility of the Osler course are the mock oral sessions where you basically are pimped in a simulated session by a mock oral examiner.  These sessions can be in "private" (i.e. one-on-one with the examiner -- which costs more $$) or "public" (i.e. performed in front of the rest of the course attendees).  They typically give you some public sessions included in the registration fee.  The biggest downside of the Osler course is the price tag (~$720).

I've heard relatively good things about the Pemberton book (https://www.amazon.com/Second-Ophthalmology-Clinical-Vignettes-Board/dp/0692401830) which is basically a list of different cases with organized responses.  This book was not around when I prepping for my oral boards, but maybe others can chime in here.

Many people just use the Wills' Manual as an outline for information, and this is actually a relatively high-yield way of organizing your information.

(Btw, I have zero financial incentive regarding any of these prep materials)

One thing you have to realize is that the oral boards is not really about knowledge.  Everyone who has passed the WQE will have the requisite knowledge base to pass the oral boards.  It is all about delivering a coherent monologue/soliloquy about a case that includes all of the requisite elements they are looking for.  This is best done with a partner who can listen to you and simulate the oral exam experience... and then give you feedback on what points you missed...or where you sounded incoherent.

Apropos to this thread, a stranger reached out to me last year to help him pass his oral boards.  He had failed the oral boards twice, meaning that if he failed it again, he would be forced to take the WQE over again!  So we basically interacted over video conferencing and I would present standardized cases to him.  At the beginning of our sessions, he was completely all over the place, jumping from a description of the image to the differential diagnosis, to the treatment, back to the differential diagnosis, etc.  In other words, though he possessed all of the requisite knowledge, his "speech" was not well-prepared, smooth, or organized.  Said differently, I understood why he failed the oral exam multiple times.  So my basic message to him was:  "You just have to have a canned speech for all of the common scenarios they are going to present to you so that it is purely reflex and you don't have to think about anything." 

So we practiced regularly... he steadily improved...and voila, he passed!  It was a significant time commitment, and yes, he paid me for my time.  But I definitely did not do it for the $ since one can make that fee in about 2 days of work in private practice.  Instead, I did it mainly as an experiment to see if I could help basically anyone pass the oral exam.  Perhaps, if there is any interest, I'll post some of the "standardized speeches" on this forum.

Anyways, the summary of all of this is basically you just need to practice giving a coherent speech in front of someone about common ophthlamic clinical scenarios.

Hope that helps!  
I am interested in having mock oral discussion. Any possibility to help?

#6 20 Aug 2018 at 05:05 PM
Wizard of OQ
Creator of Worlds
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29
Joined:
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M.S.91
I am interested in having mock oral discussion. Any possibility to help?

I can probably did it for you some time.  Can you email:  ophthoquestions@gmail.com and we can work out some details.
#7 20 Aug 2018 at 10:16 PM
Messages:
2
Joined:
31 Oct 2017

Wizard of OQ
I can probably did it for you some time.  Can you email:  ophthoquestions@gmail.com and we can work out some details.
Hi! Its like a circle that keeps on going. I emailed ophthoquestions@gmail.com and they told me to post here-. Its been going back and forth Lol! 

#8 20 Aug 2018 at 11:36 PM
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2
Joined:
30 Jul 2014

New York
Hey Wizard of OQ, I really would appreciate a mock oral discussion. I really need to pass.
#9 08 Sep 2018 at 05:16 PM
Wizard of OQ
Creator of Worlds
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29
Joined:
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N.S.11
Hey Wizard of OQ, I really would appreciate a mock oral discussion. I really need to pass.
Sure, let's arrange something.  Can you e-mail us at:  ophthoquestions@gmail.com?  I can do some video sessions with you if you want.
#10 08 Sep 2018 at 06:08 PM
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