This Information Booklet reflects information available and requirements in place at the time of publication (August 11, 2021). International medical graduates pursuing ECFMG Certification should monitor the ECFMG and USMLE websites frequently for the most current information.
Requirements for ECFMG Certification for 2022 Match
To be eligible for ECFMG Certification, international medical graduates must satisfy a number of requirements, including the medical science examination requirement, the clinical skills requirement, and the communication skills requirement. Step 1 and Step 2 Clinical Knowledge (CK) of the United States Medical Licensing Examination® (USMLE®) are the exams currently administered that satisfy the medical science examination requirement.
Prior to its suspension by the USMLE program in early 2020, the former USMLE Step 2 Clinical Skills (CS) exam satisfied the clinical skills requirement and the communication skills requirement for ECFMG Certification. In response to the suspension and subsequent discontinuation of Step 2 CS by the USMLE program, ECFMG has offered Pathways to allow international medical graduates to meet the clinical skills requirement and the communication skills requirements for ECFMG Certification. ECFMG first offered the Pathways to international medical graduates participating in the 2021 Match and is continuing and expanding the Pathways for international medical graduates participating in the 2022 Match.
Applicants who apply to a Pathway will be required to meet all requirements for that Pathway, which include attaining a satisfactory score on the Occupational English Test (OET) Medicine. Pathway applicants also must meet all other requirements for ECFMG Certification. For detailed information, visit the Requirements for ECFMG Certification for 2022 Match section of the ECFMG website. Applicants pursuing ECFMG Certification who plan to participate in future Matches should monitor the ECFMG website for information on future requirements.
Important Note: Applicants who have a passing performance on USMLE Step 2 CS that is valid for ECFMG Certification and/or are certified by ECFMG are ineligible for the Pathways. These individuals do not need to pursue the Pathways to meet the requirements for ECFMG Certification or to participate in the 2022 Match.
Important Information for 2021 Pathway Applicants
International medical graduates who submitted an application for Pathways for ECFMG Certification for the 2021 Match should read the Important Information for 2021 Pathways Applicants available in the Requirements for ECFMG Certification for 2022 Match section of the ECFMG website. The information will help you determine what steps you may need to take if you wish to participate in the 2022 Match.
All International Medical Graduates Pursuing ECFMG Certification Must Meet Current Requirements
All international medical graduates who were not certified by ECFMG as of April 15, 2021 must meet the current requirements for ECFMG Certification, regardless of what the requirements were at the time they initially applied to ECFMG. This means that ECFMG no longer accepts certain former examinations for the purpose of ECFMG Certification and individuals are no longer exempted from the current requirements for Certification. The following former exams are no longer accepted:
- ECFMG Examination;
- Federation Licensing Examination (FLEX);
- Visa Qualifying Examination (VQE);
- Foreign Medical Graduate Examination in the Medical Sciences (FMGEMS);
- NBME Part I and Part II; and
- ECFMG Clinical Skills Assessment (CSA).
This change does not impact international medical graduates who already have been certified by ECFMG based on former exams. The Standard ECFMG Certificates of such individuals remain valid.
Special Notes for 2022 in USMLE Bulletin of Information
International medical students/graduates applying for USMLE exams should read the Special Notes for 2022 in the USMLE Bulletin of Information. Noted policy changes include:
- Changing Step 1 score reporting from a three-digit numeric score to reporting only pass/fail
- Reducing the allowable number of exam attempts on each Step from six to four