Question about match list compilations

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dantt

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Does anybody know where to find or have a compilation of matches for specific specialties? I figured I'd check this forum since for some reason premeds know more about match lists than medical students.

I'm interested in seeing from what schools a few specialties accepted students and from what schools a few specific programs accepted students.

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Does anybody know where to find or have a compilation of matches for specific specialties?

I'm interested in seeing from what schools a few specialties accepted students and from what schools a few specific programs accepted students.

There is no compilation. Your best bet for one though will be http://www.nrmp.org/data/programresultsbyspecialty.pdf but it doesn't have the info you want. Most schools, if not all, keep their lists on their websites so you'll have to navigate these individual websites to see how the schools' students match.



I figured I'd check this forum since for some reason premeds know more about match lists than medical students.

:confused:
 
Match lists are essentially useless in deciding what school to go to. They say more about the composition of a class then they do about the quality of the school or the ability of the students to match.

What you really should do is ask a school when you interview "what percentage of students get their first choice in the match?" Thats useful info - match lists are not.
 
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I figured I'd check this forum since for some reason premeds know more about match lists than medical students. ...

No, actually what you are noticing is that premeds simply put more stock in match lists than medical students, because they have much to learn. The reason -- there is very little informative value to be gleaned from these lists, even to someone who knows more about the programs than the typical premed. You don't know from the list what people wanted, just what they got. You also don't know why people flocked to various fields from various schools -- was it something to do with who was admitted, something the school was doing right in a specific field, something the school was doing wrong in most of the other fields, a particularly compelling mentor in that field, etc. And you won't know which programs are good in what field -- each specialty has it's own pecking order and they tend to be very different from anything you might know from US News med school rankings. The brand name places are often great in a few specialties, but never all. And hospitals you may have never heard of will be big names in certain fields. There is also overlap in quality across specialties -- the worst anesthesiology match may be significantly less competitive than the best IM match, so simply counting specialties isn't as telling as you'd think. Some of the biggest name schools are affiliated with programs in certain specialties that are outright malignant -- places you'd hate to end up for a given specialty. So if a school has 10 matches for ortho, but they are the 10 programs you'd never want to go to, that is a bad match list. But how, as a premed can you know? You can't. You also don't know the motivations of folks in choosing what they choose. At most schools, some of the best students will go into IM or surgery, despite having the stats to get some of the more competitive fields. Why? Because it's not about what you can "get" at that level, it's about what you want. You are launching down a path you will be on, in all likelihood, for the next 40 years. So you have to like it. The days of doing things because they are prestigious tend to end with premed for most, and you start making choices based on what you want, where you want to end up, and how things impact spouses, kids, etc. (A lot can happen in 4 years of med school). So yeah, a match list is not useful to a premed. But premeds use them nonetheless because schools give them out and a premed doesn't know any better. I made the same mistake back when -- it is tradition. It is perhaps marginally useful to a med student when evaluating programs with a mentor in the specialty of their choosing, because whether a program is good versus malignant is a word of mouth kind of thing, and it's helpful to know people from your school who went to such program, so you can contact them. But for the most part, I would steer clear of match lists when choosing a med school. It confuses more than it helps, and 99% of the time, as a premed you will be taking the data and drawing a wrong conclusion because you aren't able to identify why people are making the choices they made, and your inferences will be all wrong. Sort of like watching the end of a movie without the sound and trying to piece together what is happening -- most of the time you will be very far afield of accurate.
 
What you really should do is ask a school when you interview "what percentage of students get their first choice in the match?" Thats useful info - match lists are not.

Even that is suspect, because you have no gauge as to the motivations. Eg. did people sell themselves short and apply for things that were less competitive because they wanted to stay in the region, or for family reasons? Did admissions simply select a lot of people who wanted to go into things that were easier to get? You don't know the degree of self selection or the reasons behind such selection so you can't really place how impressive getting one's first choice was.
 
No, actually what you are noticing is that premeds simply put more stock in match lists than medical students, because they have much to learn. The reason -- there is very little informative value to be gleaned from these lists, even to someone who knows more about the programs than the typical premed. You don't know from the list what people wanted, just what they got. You also don't know why people flocked to various fields from various schools -- was it something to do with who was admitted, something the school was doing right in a specific field, something the school was doing wrong in most of the other fields, a particularly compelling mentor in that field, etc. And you won't know which programs are good in what field -- each specialty has it's own pecking order and they tend to be very different from anything you might know from US News med school rankings. The brand name places are often great in a few specialties, but never all. And hospitals you may have never heard of will be big names in certain fields. There is also overlap in quality across specialties -- the worst anesthesiology match may be significantly less competitive than the best IM match, so simply counting specialties isn't as telling as you'd think. Some of the biggest name schools are affiliated with programs in certain specialties that are outright malignant -- places you'd hate to end up for a given specialty. So if a school has 10 matches for ortho, but they are the 10 programs you'd never want to go to, that is a bad match list. But how, as a premed can you know? You can't. You also don't know the motivations of folks in choosing what they choose. At most schools, some of the best students will go into IM or surgery, despite having the stats to get some of the more competitive fields. Why? Because it's not about what you can "get" at that level, it's about what you want. You are launching down a path you will be on, in all likelihood, for the next 40 years. So you have to like it. The days of doing things because they are prestigious tend to end with premed for most, and you start making choices based on what you want, where you want to end up, and how things impact spouses, kids, etc. (A lot can happen in 4 years of med school). So yeah, a match list is not useful to a premed. But premeds use them nonetheless because schools give them out and a premed doesn't know any better. I made the same mistake back when -- it is tradition. It is perhaps marginally useful to a med student when evaluating programs with a mentor in the specialty of their choosing, because whether a program is good versus malignant is a word of mouth kind of thing, and it's helpful to know people from your school who went to such program, so you can contact them. But for the most part, I would steer clear of match lists when choosing a med school. It confuses more than it helps, and 99% of the time, as a premed you will be taking the data and drawing a wrong conclusion because you aren't able to identify why people are making the choices they made, and your inferences will be all wrong. Sort of like watching the end of a movie without the sound and trying to piece together what is happening -- most of the time you will be very far afield of accurate.

Even that is suspect, because you have no gauge as to the motivations. Eg. did people sell themselves short and apply for things that were less competitive because they wanted to stay in the region, or for family reasons? Did admissions simply select a lot of people who wanted to go into things that were easier to get? You don't know the degree of self selection or the reasons behind such selection so you can't really place how impressive getting one's first choice was.

very awesome posts...thank you
 
Even that is suspect, because you have no gauge as to the motivations. Eg. did people sell themselves short and apply for things that were less competitive because they wanted to stay in the region, or for family reasons? Did admissions simply select a lot of people who wanted to go into things that were easier to get? You don't know the degree of self selection or the reasons behind such selection so you can't really place how impressive getting one's first choice was.

Well no, and you also don't know if the dean forced them to apply to a specialty other than what they really wanted.

But it is definitely worth more than staring at a match list.
 
Suggestion for L2D: just copy and paste that post into a text file and keep it on your computer's desktop. Every time this comes up, just copy and paste it... save your time..
 
I still don't get why when someone asks a question about match lists, three quarters of the posts have to be people explaining why they don't matter. Are we as premeds not allowed to indulge our curiosity a little?
 
I still don't get why when someone asks a question about match lists, three quarters of the posts have to be people explaining why they don't matter. Are we as premeds not allowed to indulge our curiosity a little?

Because the question is how to interpret them. There is no way to interpret them so there is no way to answer the question.
 
Because the question is how to interpret them. There is no way to interpret them so there is no way to answer the question.
The OP just asked whether there existed some sort of a dabatase of match lists by specialty. The answer is apparently no, so that's all that needed to be said (i.e. Dr. Roboto's post).
 
Thanks for your responses everybody.

I'm already a medical student attending a non-"top 10" school. The reason I wanted to see if there's a compiled match list is to get a better sense of at what programs I would be competitive. There are a few programs to which I am very interested in applying but I would like to know if I even have a chance before I commit an away rotation. Of course, I will also be talking to our academic deans.

Edit: I will want to apply to JSEI and already know it's great from both word-of-mouth and "rankings." It's everything I'm looking for from world class clinical training, cutting edge research, diverse population to just plain good weather and close to family. Unfortunately, I suspect a place like this requires much more than top board scores and great letter of recs. I'm not sure my local mentors have enough clout to get me there so I'm thinking about away rotations and research fellowships.
 
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Thanks for your responses everybody.

I'm already a medical student attending a non-"top 10" school. The reason I wanted to see if there's a compiled match list is to get a better sense of at what programs I would be competitive. There are a few programs to which I am very interested in applying but I would like to know if I even have a chance before I commit an away rotation. Of course, I will also be talking to our academic deans.

In that case all you need is your schools match list. Although again, that still doesn't really tell you where you're competitive.

Ask your dean of students he should have the list. At my school they emailed it out to everyone and its sitting in a binder at the main office so your school should have it somewhere where its easy to access for you.
 
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