Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (2024)

In medical school, half the battle is learning how to study and, more specifically, what to study. As a med student, you’re likely trying to make sense of all the wealth of information thrown at you.

One solution to help with overwhelm is the Boards and Beyond video subscription service. It’s a comprehensive resource that covers nearly every topic on a medical school curriculum.

Fortunately, there are pre-made Boards and Beyond Anki decks to help you retain information and pass the USMLE step 1 or 2.

We’ll cover the best decks that review Boards and Beyond material.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks

Every deck is unique and designed for a specific goal. Some are suited for studying for Step 1, while others are for Step 2. Also, some decks are focused on specific subjects, while others are more all-encompassing.

We’ll be reviewing the following boards and beyond Anki decks:

  • Lightyear: Step 1 Anki Deck
  • Soze Step 1 Master Anki Deck
  • Cheesy Lightyear Boards and Beyond Anki Deck
  • Boards and Beyond Cardio Anki Deck
  • Boards and Beyond Pathology Anki Deck
  • Lightyear Infinity for Step 2

1. Lightyear: Step 1 Anki Deck

Deck NameLightyear Step 1
Cards22,500 cards
Card FormatBasic
Year of Upload2018
Required PluginsNone
Download Size701 MB
Download LinkLightyear Step 1

The Lightyear deck step 1 deck is consists of 22,5000 cards and one of the most comprehensive Board and Beyond decks out there. Of the total deck, 18.7k cards are from Boards and Beyond videos, 1.8k from the First Aid book, 1k from Pathoma, and another 1.1k from UworldRX.

Most cards feature snapshots of the associated section from Boards and Beyond, First Aid, or a helpful diagram.

This deck is neatly organized using hierarchical tags to find topics from the 400+ videos sourced.

The cards are mostly delivered in a cloze format with a fill-in-the-blank term. Some images with texts are blurred, requiring you to recall the keyword.

In the latest update of the deck, Redditor u/Infinity2k has offered supplementary options. You can also choose to download decks from Lolnotacop and Zanki pharm cards.

Overall, the deck gives a good grasp of everything to prepare you for the USMLE Step 1.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (1)

2. Soze Step 1 Master Anki Deck

Deck NameSoze’s Step 1 Master
Cards3494 cards
Card FormatBasic
Year of Upload2017
Required PluginsNone
Download Size94.2 MB
Download LinkSoze’s Step 1 Master

Soze Step 1 Master Anki deck is another popular deck to prepare for Step 1. 90% of the cards are sourced from Boards and Beyond. The remainder of the cards come from First Aid, USMLE-Rx, and various class lectures.

This deck covers a variety of topics from Boards and Beyond, such as:

  • Endocrinology
  • Cardiovascular
  • Hematology
  • Renal
  • Reproductive
  • Pulmonary
  • Biochemistry
  • Psychiatry
  • Musculoskeletal
  • Gastrointestinal

Additionally, a small portion of the deck consists of basic science subjects. This includes pharmacology, behavioral science, cell biology, biostatistics, and infectious disease.

Many cards are a little longer, requiring more initial effort. However, the payoff is that you won’t be scattered with unrelated information in the deck.

If you’re trying to recall thiazide diuretics’ side effects, all of the information will be on one card rather than adding many cards.

Typically, remembering one or two side effects gives you a better chance to remember the other effects.

What’s also great about the deck is that the creator added a mnemonic to people students remember certain concepts.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (2)

3. Cheesy Lightyear Boards and Beyond Anki Deck

Deck NameCheesy Lightyear
Card FormatBasic
Year of Upload2019
Required PluginsNone
Download Size1.5 GB
Download LinkCheesy Lightyear

A Redditor with the name u/Cheesy_Doritos decided to update the Lightyear Boards and Beyond deck.

The primary difference is that there are more images from varied sources, such as First Aid 2019, Pixorize, Picmonic, and DirtyUSMLE.

This deck also organizes the cards by modules into subdecks. You can choose to review by subdeck or do all the cards mixed.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (3)

The cards are formatted similarly to the original Lightyear in that there are fill-in-the-blank words. However, screenshots from the associated source are also attached to give you more in-depth information on the topic.

In the cardiology section, built-in sound effects correspond to the heartbeat based on the condition.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (4)

4. Boards and Beyond – Cardio Anki Deck

Deck NameBoards and Beyond Cardio
Card FormatBasic
Year of Upload2020
Required PluginsNone
Download Size7.8 MB
Download LinkBoards and Beyond Cardio

If you’re searching for a quick review of cardiology, consider the Boards and Beyond Cardio deck. It’s only 132 cards, so you can easily run through the entire deck within a few hours or less.

The cards are formatted in a few different ways. Some are fill-in-the-blank words, while others are Q&A.

Some answers even force you to draw a diagram to explain the term more thoroughly. This forces you to understand the concept rather than memorize information.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (5)

5. Boards and Beyond Lightyear Pathology Anki Deck

Deck NameBoards and Beyond Lightyear Pathology
Card FormatBasic
Year of Upload2019
Required PluginsBasic
Download Size0.87 MB
Download LinkBoards and Beyond Lightyear Pathology

One Redditor decided to add to the Lightyear deck by creating a Pathology deck. He believes the Boards and Beyond pathology portion doesn’t thoroughly cover certain topics. Therefore, there are sections from Pathoma, specifically chapter 3, covering these gaps.

We recommend adding it to your Lightyear deck as a bonus to beef up the Pathology portion.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (6)

6. Boards and Beyond Lightyear Infinity for Step 2

Deck NameLightyear Infinity for Step 2
Card FormatBasic
Year of Upload2021
Required PluginsNone
Download Size1.6 GB
Download LinkLightyear Infinity for Step 2

Until recently, there hasn’t been a deck geared toward Step 2. The Lightyear Infinity for Step 2 is a comprehensive deck that covers Boards and Beyond and UWorld for Step 2 videos.

Some cards come from other resources like AMBOSS, Online Med Ed, the free AAFP questions, and others.

According to the creator of this deck, u/dan-yul-sun, the best ways to use this deck are as follows:

1. Watch the Boards and Beyond videos fully.

2. Download the cards and go through them.

3. Complete the UWorld practice questions.

4. Search relevant terms and keywords in the deck to retain the information as you go along with the questions.

5. Continue to review the deck and make more cards to fill your unique knowledge gaps.

While the deck is comprehensive, it’s suited for the original creator’s particular knowledge gaps. You’ll want to add cards to help you fix any sticking points you have.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (7)

Additional Study Resources For Medical Students

There are many study resources available for board exams. Check out ourrecommendations pagefor a guide to the best of them.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (8)

Colin Ngai

Colin is a healthcare writer who focuses on generating impactful content for young med
students. Particularly, he specializes in the finances and money-making opportunities that a
career in the medical field can provide.

As a once-struggling college student, he now has built a career from freelance writing and other
side hustles. Hailing from Chicago, he loves writing, reading, and weight lifting.

His goal is to become a world-class copywriter, using his creativity and words to inspire others
to improve their lives.

Best Boards and Beyond Anki Decks – willpeachMD (2024)


How many Anki cards can you memorize in a day? ›

You might find when asking other language learners that the number of cards they review can range from 5 to 50 cards per day. This all depends on the time you have to dedicate in learning a language, more specifically how much time you have to create and review cards on Anki.

Is a lightyear deck good? ›

Overall, either of these decks are great resources. I have to admit, I am biased toward Lightyear, as that is the deck I started with and will continue to use until boards. The deciding factor for me is the fact that Lightyear cards are more concise and test virtually the same material than Zanki.

What is Anki Hub? ›

AnkiHub is a web application and add-on that fully integrates with Anki to facilitate mass collaboration, real-time updates, and much more, all while still allowing users to customize their Anki cards.

What is a zanki deck? ›

The Zanki deck is a well-made, time-tested, highly adaptable deck which is great for reinforcing concepts learned through First Aid, Pathoma, Sketchy, and more. Because it was created out of the Brosencephalon deck, it contains much of the material offered by that deck while building on it further.

Is 500 Anki cards a day too much? ›

It depends. If you're prepping for step 1, then I assume you already learned the content. If so, then it's fine to do 500 a day because a lot of it will be review. If it's totally new content, that's going to be a burden.

Can you do 100 Anki cards a day? ›

I personally tried to do 100 new cards per day for a week in the past, but couldn't make it past day 6. If you have sleep, energy, motivation, or focus issues, you'll likely find 100 to be impossible. Still, starting with 40-60 new cards per day in the beginning is likely a good idea, so long as you can sustain it.

Is Anki no longer free? ›

Anki Universal is a completely free flashcard app (no forced ads, paid models, etc.) that will help you memorize whatever you want with minimal efforts. You can add text, image, audio, and video to your cards and sync between your Windows 10 devices through OneDrive.

Is Anki really worth it? ›

The ability to make your own flashcards is extremely powerful, though getting started is more than a little frustrating. If you can make Anki's workflows suit your needs, it's a great way to memorize a ton of words, but doing so isn't as user-friendly as we've come to expect from applications in 2022.

What is the best version of Anki? ›

Recent Anki versions come in separate Qt5 and Qt6 variants. The Qt6 version is recommended for most users.

What is the pepper Anki deck? ›

The Pepper Deck is an invaluable resource for anyone studying microbiology through Sketchy Micro. Its focus on visual learning complements Sketchy Micro's engaging style and makes mastering complex microbiological concepts much more manageable and enjoyable.

What is in the AnKing deck? ›

– the AnKing deck is a free resource that delivers the most up-to-date, comprehensive collection of flashcards to prepare medical students for in-house assessments and ensure success on the USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 examinations.

Is Zanki a good deck? ›

Our Opinion. Zanki is a wonderfully thorough resource that sums most of the content from First Aid, Pathoma, and Sketchy Micro/Pharm. It's essentially a series of clear Anki decks released in 2017 based on the original 2014 Brosencephalon decks.

What is the Anki limit per day? ›

By default, Anki will show you a maximum of 20 new cards each day.

How many flashcards can you study in a day? ›

How many flashcards can you learn in a day? If you're wondering for yourself, I recommend starting with twenty, sticking with that for a couple weeks, & if it feels sustainable, slowly bumping the number up. If it's too much, do the opposite.

How many Anki cards an hour? ›

On average I'd say a good pace is around 300-400 an hour. I average around 8 seconds per card on review. 10 on news. Generally we tell students to take no longer than 15 seconds before they flip a card over --> so rough calculations (240 cards/hour if no break).

How much time should you spend on Anki per day? ›

The most popular community guideline is 1 hour a day. You can't directly control how much time you're going to spend on Anki. The amount of time is determined by what card type (template) you use, how many new cards you add each day, your retention ratio, and how fast you can read Japanese.


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