1. Visit this thread to beta-test StudySchedule.org. StudySchedule is a free nonprofit site that builds dynamic MCAT study schedules unique for your needs and timeline.
Hey, Guest, do you know how much will it cost you to apply to medical school? Check out SDN's Medical School Application Cost Calculator and plan your budget.

Away rotation question

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by loveoforganic, Feb 2, 2010.

  1. SDN is made possible through member donations, sponsorships, and our volunteers. Learn about SDN's nonprofit mission.
  1. loveoforganic

    loveoforganic -Account Deactivated- 2+ Year Member

    Jan 30, 2009
    I've been told by one of the deans at the school I'm interested in that away rotations/special rotations don't take place until 4th year.

    I'm interested in a field that would require an away rotation, so would have to take place during 4th year. Aren't residency applications submitted at the end of 3rd year?

    Am I missing something or is this standard operating procedure?
  2. SDN Members don't see this ad. About the ads.
  3. FloatOn

    FloatOn 2+ Year Member

    May 26, 2009
    According to this timeline: http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/abo...application-process-a-timetable-success.shtml

    (You begin 4th year in June-ish, I think. Probably depends on each school.) You start entering in info for your residency application in September. Nov/Dec/Jan are for interviews, etc. Match lists have to be turned in in February. Match comes out in March (3rd week?).

    I'm not sure about away rotations during 3rd year, unless your school has a special partnership with another hospital or something, but you definitely have the option of doing away rotations 4th year, as you've mentioned, and can still apply to the residency programs that you want to. I know someone who did an away rotation in October for a residency program she wanted to apply to and ended up interviewing there later on. It seemed to work out fine.

    Since you're interested in a specialty that necessitates an away rotation, maybe you could squeeze it in 3rd year with special permission.

    Edit: The above site by the AMA is actually a really good summary of the residency app process. I'll bookmark it for later.
  4. loveoforganic

    loveoforganic -Account Deactivated- 2+ Year Member

    Jan 30, 2009
    Thanks :) I suppose you have time for one away rotation prior to getting your app in at least. There's just no way I would apply to a residency without having previously rotated through it... It's not just matching that would be worrisome, but yeah.. Actually knowing you enjoy it :x
  5. FloatOn

    FloatOn 2+ Year Member

    May 26, 2009
    It's definitely great to rotate through a hospital and get a feel for the type of people you'll be around and work with, but you can't possibly rotate through every hospital you want to apply to. I guess that's why many students apply to and stay at the hospital associated with their med school.

    Just like with med school, that's what the interview is for. They see if you're a fit for them, but you want to see if they're a fit for you too. You will, after all, spend at least 3 years (unless it's like a one year internship/transition year...still not quite sure how this works) there working countless hours. You want to make sure the location is right and the residents are as happy as residents can be.
  6. loveoforganic

    loveoforganic -Account Deactivated- 2+ Year Member

    Jan 30, 2009
    I mean to get a feel for the field, not the specific program.
  7. FloatOn

    FloatOn 2+ Year Member

    May 26, 2009
    Oh...woops. Doesn't it make sense, then, to be at a med school/hospital that actually has the specialty that you're interested in? I mean, it doesn't have to be a top-notch program; it's just better for it to be there...unless I'm completely missing something.
  8. mirrorpair

    mirrorpair 7+ Year Member

    May 5, 2008
    The impression I get is that an away rotation (subinternship) is like a month long interview; if you want to get into a specific program a subinternship is a great way of getting your foot in the door. In some of the more competitive specialties an applicant who did a sub-i at the program is looked at much more highly than those who didn't (and those who didn't tend to be asked at interview "why didn't you sub-i here?").

    I think the point, at least for some competitive surgical specialties, is that a sub-i should be viewed more as a way of getting into a program that you like instead of a way to get a feel for a field.

    By and large it seems sub-i's are done beginning of June after M3 though I don't know if you can squeeze one in during the year.
  9. loveoforganic

    loveoforganic -Account Deactivated- 2+ Year Member

    Jan 30, 2009

    Yes, that does make sense :) However, it's one of only two real drawbacks to the school I'm looking at, and honestly, the pro's significantly outweigh those two cons. If this was THE specialty I was interested in, it may be a different story, but it's one of a few. There are no rad onc (the field of interest) residencies in my home state (a rad onc practice is attempting to become one, but I've heard it's unlikely), and the in state location is a big priority to me, among other things more specific to this school.

    Thanks for the info mirror!
  10. JJMrK

    JJMrK J to the J Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Apr 26, 2007
    I've seen a few timelines for this. It depends on how many you're planning on doing. For fields where they are big, a lot of people do one during the summer (June/July), and then maybe one or two more in the fall. A goal might be to do a "big name" program in the summer so you can get a letter of recommendation from a big wig, and then do the ones in the fall at places you'd be really interested in attending.
  11. EBLoneStar

    EBLoneStar 5+ Year Member

    May 15, 2009
    Dallas, TX
    One a somewhat related note, I've been wondering about the timing of the process too.

    How can you know if you want to specialize in something and apply to residencies in the field if you haven't been able to rotate through that specialty before residency applications are due?

    For instance, I'm interested in neuro-related specialties, such as neurology or PM&R and others, but one of the schools I'm accepted to (Jefferson), the neurology rotation isn't until 4th year (as are all the elective rotations).

    I guess it works out cause that's the way things work at a large number of schools, but it makes me think that schools should just let students do all their required clerkships as well as elective rotations in any order they want through third and fourth year.
  12. mvenus929

    mvenus929 10+ Year Member

    Jul 6, 2006
    You can't go on and learn something specialized without learning the basics, and the required clerkships are designed to teach you the basics (at least, that's my understanding of it). I mean, a good portion of specialties require a fellowship, not a residency, so you have to start in an internal medicine, pediatrics, or surgery residency anyway. But there's simply no way to rotate through all the specialties that you're considering, so you kinda have to shoot in the dark when it comes to residency applications.

    And some schools start their third year in March or April, which means you can get more clerkships in before you make your choice :)
  13. nonsciencemajor

    nonsciencemajor Banned

    Nov 10, 2009
    get into med school first, then pass the first two years, then pass the USMLE, then pass third year.... then worry about this
  14. loveoforganic

    loveoforganic -Account Deactivated- 2+ Year Member

    Jan 30, 2009
    So worry about it once it's too late, gotcha :rolleyes:
  15. FloatOn

    FloatOn 2+ Year Member

    May 26, 2009
    I know some schools have shadowing opportunities during M1 and M2, so that could help you get an idea for a specialty, but I don't think it adds up to anything substantial.

    I have no idea about rotating through something not offered during M3. You might be able to squeeze in one elective, but it seems like core rotations are back-to-back. And even if you do go through, say 2 weeks of neurosurgery or whatever, how can you know only after 2 weeks that this is what you want to do for the rest of your life? Even the longer rotations that are 2-3 months don't feel like enough.

    Where are the med students, residents, and attendings when you have a legitimate question? :laugh:
  16. brooklynblunder

    brooklynblunder 2+ Year Member

    Aug 3, 2009
    :laugh::laugh::laugh: @ the irony of this
  17. DrYoda

    DrYoda Space Cowboy 7+ Year Member

    Jun 22, 2008
    Dagobah System
    Alright, there are a couple things going on in this thread so I'm just going to ramble off a bunch of info.

    A sub-internship is where you are given "intern level" responsibilities, most (all?) schools require you to do one.

    Away rotation is just what it sounds like, a rotation done at another insitution, but it is not necessarily a sub-i.

    You will have time to do electives before sending out apps. Although it is not an ideal set-up, it is how many places run. Some school do have elective time (one rotation usually) third year and I think that is something to consider when weighing which school to go to.

    A word on away rotations. They are valued differently in different fields (I hear surgical fields value them the most, but I'm only an M1 so I'm no expert). If you search through the internal med forums there are debates as to the value and some people even recommend not doing them. The take home point is you can do 0 away rotations and be fine.

    In this sitation I would take the time to shadow in the different departments early on in med school and research the fields trying to determine which of these specialities you like the most. Hopefully you would have your mind made up by the beginning of fourth year and schedule the rotation in the speciality you want to apply to as the first 4th year rotation.
  18. scrambizle

    scrambizle Junior Member 2+ Year Member

    Apr 1, 2006
    Has already been touched on,but I'll continue--
    Away rotations are done 4th year. You can do up to 4 at my school, but most do between 0 and 2. There are usually 3-4 rotations in 4th year that you can use to get LORs (before residencies start looking at your application), so most people do away rotations early.
    One of the best uses of an away rotation is if you want to go to a different geographic region than where your med school is located. It can be good to get a LOR from someone who is well know in that area, and to meet a program director in that region.
    If you really want to go to a specific prestigious hospital (Penn, Columbia, etc.), then it can be a good idea to do an away rotation there so they know you.
    Most people (>90%) don't match at a place where they did an away rotation.

    Jefferson is moving neuro to third year.

Share This Page