Nov 13, 2013
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I've heard talk about "magic numbers" for # of interviews for matching into plastic surgery, but have heard varying things about the definition and what the number is. Is there any hard data or accessible sources that the magic number comes from or is it just hear-say/made up?
 
Nov 12, 2013
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The median number of offers for applicants that matched is 18, with 13 interviews attended. The median number of offers for unmatched applicants is 4, with all 4 attended.

This is from one of the statistical reports from the NRMP.
 
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Jun 17, 2013
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A program director told me that they have investigated recent match data for integrated plastic surgery applicants. They found that 90% of applicants who applied solely to integrated plastic surgery programs and attended at least 7 interviews matched.
 

lackli

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The most recent NRMP charting outcomes data is from 2011. You can check it out at http://www.nrmp.org/match-data/main-residency-match-data/

FWIW the mean number interviews for those that match is 10.6. Mean number of interviews for those who don't match is 6.5.

There is also a couple papers on pubmed floating around with some mostly obviously info but some interesting facts. 1/3 of applicants will match at their away rotation. 60-70% will match at one of their aways or home program.
 

ctusfinest

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Jun 30, 2009
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I would actually look at page 228 on that NRMP charting outcomes sheet. Of course its limited data but it looks like if you do between 10-12 interviews, you have about a 13/21 chance of matching. With 13-15 its more like 15/24. Once you get to 16 its all the way up to 75%.

That said there are people with 2 interviews that match and people with 16 that do not match. We all hopefully think of ourselves as great interviewers but clearly there is some difference there.
 
Oct 16, 2013
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18 currently, but may cancel a couple. Is everyone planning on getting their own rooms, or is there an interest in sharing hotel rooms, rental cars, taxis, etc? This could get pretty expensive otherwise... If anyone's interested PM me.
 
Jan 12, 2012
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I think it was mentioned somewhere before but does anyone plan on attending an interview that they are going to miss the dinner event? I am really interested in a couple programs but there is just no way to make the prior evening event.
 
Apr 21, 2012
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I think it was mentioned somewhere before but does anyone plan on attending an interview that they are going to miss the dinner event? I am really interested in a couple programs but there is just no way to make the prior evening event.
I'm wondering the same thing. Is it a deal breaker to miss those? I have back to back east and west coast interviews at one point and there is absolutely no way I'll get to the pre-interview dinner for the second one. I imagine it puts you at a disadvantage, but I'm going to both either way since I'm interested in both programs. If I don't go to the pre-interview thing I might have a lesser chance of being ranked high, but if I don't go at all I have zero chance.
 
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PlasticSurgMD

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Oct 14, 2013
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I've heard talk about "magic numbers" for # of interviews for matching into plastic surgery, but have heard varying things about the definition and what the number is. Is there any hard data or accessible sources that the magic number comes from or is it just hear-say/made up?
Disclaimer: this is one of the "newer" papers I know of, but it was published in 2011 and based on 99'- 09' match data, and as we know things have changed since 09'
The Magic Number and the data you speak of taken from "The independant plastic surgery match" (Harper et al, Ann Plast Surg 2011; 66: 568-571) :

The statistic that most candidates would like to know is the relationship between the number of programs interviewed and the rate of a successful match. Along the interview trail, many candi- dates discuss this “magic number,” yet none has statistical data to support their claim. Table 8 shows the match rate as it pertains to the number of interviews attended. It also shows the average number on their rank list to which the applicant matched. Although an individ- ual may successfully match after interviewing at only 1 program, and vice versa an individual who interviews at countless programs may not match, a noticeable trend is demonstrated. After 5 inter- views are attended, a steady incline in a successful match rate is noted. Ultimately, all 26 of the applicants who interviewed at 13 or more programs successfully matched.

Table 8 shows details but briefly the # of interviews and correlating match %age
1-41% (I assume that people only interviewing at 1-3 places includes lower candidates obviously but likely this number is skewed a bit b/c probably also includes competitive applicants that were geographically constrained due to family/kids etc)
5-50%
10-80%
>13-100%


You can also look at a paper entitled
"Resident Selection Protocols in Plastic Surgery: A National Survey of Plastic Surgery Independent Program Directors" by Janis et al in PRS August 2012
 
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ctusfinest

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Jun 30, 2009
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I have the same question. I haven't heard an answer of any kind yet so I'm assuming its not an issue?

I'm wondering the same thing. Is it a deal breaker to miss those? I have back to back east and west coast interviews at one point and there is absolutely no way I'll get to the pre-interview dinner for the second one. I imagine it puts you at a disadvantage, but I'm going to both either way since I'm interested in both programs. If I don't go to the pre-interview thing I might have a lesser chance of being ranked high, but if I don't go at all I have zero chance.
 

igap

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Jul 10, 2009
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"Magic" numbers for the integrated match are available in the NRMP data tables.

For the independent match, it should not be a major concern. The independent match is not very competitive any more. Last year the match rate was 86% with five unfilled positions.

As someone who reviewed the applications for the independent match last year, the qualifications were overall pretty unimpressive. I thought that about 20% of the applicants were competitive, and then there was a precipitous dropoff in applicant quality/qualifications. Talking to many people in academic plastic surgery, the consensus is that the change to a 3 year residency has resulted in fewer applicants. That seems to be born out by the data. From an independent applicant perspective, there has never been a better time to apply.