TheKingofClay

5+ Year Member
Aug 22, 2010
96
8
Obviously clinical ECs are very important.

I'm wondering how different clinical ECs stack up to one another/viewed relative to other types of experiences.

How important is clinical research? Is it viewed very highly in terms of boosting ones application? [This one is my main question]

Other questions include:

How many hours of shadowing should be aimed for? and how does ADCOM view shadowing?

What types of work in the hospital should be acquired? and in general how many hours is considered 'good'?

Feel free to chime in on any other details you think are worth mentioning. Thanks!
 
Last edited:

Instatewaiter

But... there's a troponin
10+ Year Member
Apr 28, 2006
6,066
2,116
Washington
Status
Attending Physician
Obviously clinical ECs are very important.

I'm wondering how different clinical ECs stack up to one another/viewed relative to other types of experiences.

How important is clinical research? Is it viewed very highly in terms of boosting ones application? [This one is my main question]

Other questions include:

How many hours of shadowing should be aimed for? and how does ADCOM view shadowing?

What types of work in the hospital should be acquired? and in general how many hours is considered 'good'?

Feel free to chime in on any other details you think are worth mentioning. Thanks!
Clinical research looks good but it is not vital.

You should shoot for 100+ hours if possible. The more the better.

Shadowing 4+ docs in different specialties is a good idea to give you a broad view of medicine. Volunteering at a free clinic is really good since they let you do more there.
 

apumic

Oracle of the Sheet
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Jan 1, 2007
3,924
7
Denver, CO
Status
Medical Student
Obviously clinical ECs are very important.

I'm wondering how different clinical ECs stack up to one another/viewed relative to other types of experiences.

How important is clinical research? Is it viewed very highly in terms of boosting ones application? [This one is my main question]
Research is helpful but not crucial for most schools -- granted, most successful applicants at most schools have it. What varies is how much a school really cares about your research background.
Other questions include:

How many hours of shadowing should be aimed for? and how does ADCOM view shadowing?
40 to <100 hrs shadowing; 250+ clinical hrs (incl. shadowing) is typical for stronger applicants
What types of work in the hospital should be acquired? and in general how many hours is considered 'good'?
CNA, ED Tech, Scribe, etc. are good paying jobs; I don't generally recommend volunteering in the hospital (go free clinic instead)

Once you're working somewhere you no longer talk about "how many hours." If I were to count my number of clinical hours it would be somewhere between 3000 and 5000. At that point, you talk in months -- i.e., I've worked in a clinical setting for around 2 years and done research for around 4 years. Speaking in terms of hours is pretty ridiculous once you're over 300-500 hrs!
Feel free to chime in on any other details you think are worth mentioning. Thanks!
 

Dirt

10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Jun 18, 2008
872
8
From the earth.
Status
Resident [Any Field]
Obviously clinical ECs are very important.

I'm wondering how different clinical ECs stack up to one another/viewed relative to other types of experiences.

How important is clinical research? Is it viewed very highly in terms of boosting ones application? [This one is my main question]

Other questions include:

How many hours of shadowing should be aimed for? and how does ADCOM view shadowing?

What types of work in the hospital should be acquired? and in general how many hours is considered 'good'?

Feel free to chime in on any other details you think are worth mentioning. Thanks!
Try to think of these things like an ADCOM would. ADCOMs don't have strict cutoffs of hours worked that make something worthwhile. The questions they are trying to get answered are things like:

Does this person have enough experience with physicians to have some clue of what a career in medicine entails?

Did this person go out of their way to explore such things, thus showing true determination and interest or did they just check off the shadowing box?


Similar questions exist for clinical research, sure it is good, provided you can talk about it, and it appears like you did it because you liked it.

What ADCOMs don't like is when your shadowing is limited to one week with your personal family doc or hanging out in your uncle's derm office It suggests that you didn't really seek out broad experience and were really just doing it because you had to. Unfortunately the judgment of what is and what is not valuable clinical experience is in the eye of the beholder.

Sorry these answers are not hard and fast but there is no hard and fast answer. My best advice would be to play devil's advocate with your app and do your best to pick apart your shortcomings and then improve them.
 

apumic

Oracle of the Sheet
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Jan 1, 2007
3,924
7
Denver, CO
Status
Medical Student
Try to think of these things like an ADCOM would. ADCOMs don't have strict cutoffs of hours worked that make something worthwhile. The questions they are trying to get answered are things like:

Does this person have enough experience with physicians to have some clue of what a career in medicine entails?

Did this person go out of their way to explore such things, thus showing true determination and interest or did they just check off the shadowing box?


Similar questions exist for clinical research, sure it is good, provided you can talk about it, and it appears like you did it because you liked it.

What ADCOMs don't like is when your shadowing is limited to one week with your personal family doc or hanging out in your uncle's derm office It suggests that you didn't really seek out broad experience and were really just doing it because you had to. Unfortunately the judgment of what is and what is not valuable clinical experience is in the eye of the beholder.

Sorry these answers are not hard and fast but there is no hard and fast answer. My best advice would be to play devil's advocate with your app and do your best to pick apart your shortcomings and then improve them.
This.

This is a lifelong lesson. When preparing to be evaluated by someone, think like they think. In other words, figure out what's important to them and work from there. What I gave earlier might give some idea of what a strong applicant may have already done but it is not those numbers that make the person a strong applicant. Instead, it is what is behind those numbers.