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Performance on the NBME Part I Examination

Herbert Nickens, MD, MA
JAMA. 1995;273(8):617. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03520320025022.
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To the Editor.  —The recent article addressing performance on the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) Part I examination1 contained a statement that could create an incorrect inference. In noting the gaps in academic indices between underrepresented minority compared with non-underrepresented minority medical students, the authors emphasize the urgency to evaluate the effectiveness of academic interventions "particularly in light of major efforts to recruit underrepresented minority students." They then reference our Project 3000 by 2000 Technical Assistance Manual,2 which is one of the central documents supporting the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) campaign to reach population parity for minorities in US medical schools by the year 2000. A reader could easily draw the false inference that the project's central strategy involves recruitment. In fact, the central premise of the project is that the primary cause today for the underrepresentation of minorities in medicine is the failure of


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