5 Tips to Improve Your Residency Application5 Residency Application Tips

The U.S. residency recruitment process is highly competitive. According to the National Resident Matching Program® (NRMP®), 58.8% of international medical graduates (IMGs) who participated in the 2019 Match secured a first-year residency position. Make the most of your residency application by taking these tips into consideration:

  1. Learn About the Electronic Residency Application Service® (ERAS®)
    ECFMG serves as the designated Dean’s office for all international medical students and IMGs who use ERAS to apply for first- and second-year (PGY-1 and PGY-2) residency positions in U.S. programs of graduate medical education (GME). Review the ERAS application process.

  2. Get Personal
    Personal statements allow you to express who you are and why you are applying for residency. This is your opportunity to differentiate yourself beyond your exam scores and CV. Take note of these Personal Statement Do’s and Don’ts.

  3. Ask Early and Ask the Right Person
    The right letter of recommendation can give you an extra edge. Here’s what you should know when Asking for a Letter of Recommendation.

  4. Do Your Research
    Be strategic in selecting the residency programs to which you will apply. Research which programs are the best fit for you based on specialty interest, the programs’ minimum requirements, and your visa needs. Here are residency research tools you can use to get started:
    • FREIDA™ – The American Medical Association (AMA) Residency & Fellowship Database
    • Residency Explorer – American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC)

    Medical specialty organizations may have their own residency directories. Some are open for all to use and others may require login or membership. The following directory offers insight into family practice.

  5. Consider the Data
    The AAMC has published resources to support residency applicants in making strategic decisions regarding specialty and residency program selection. Learn more about how to Apply Smart: Data to Consider When Applying to Residency.

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