Eligibility period is the time during which you are able to make an appointment to take your exam. It is usually determined the moment you apply.

For USMLE steps 1, 2 CK and 3, the eligibility period lasts a total of 3 months. You can reserve your exam appointment in any day as long as it falls into this 3-month period.  For USMLE steps 1 and 2 CK, you can select the eligibility period that you prefer during your application, but it can only occur during the same year that you are applying.  You can even select an eligibility period that has recently started.  The eligibility period for the USMLE step 3 starts the moment your Scheduling Permit is issued, which means that you must take your step 3 no later than 90 days after you receive your Scheduling Permit.

In the case of the USMLE step 2 CS the eligibility period lasts a total of 12 months, and it starts the moment your application is completely processed.

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