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Question about Residency Placements/ Match lists: What am I looking for?

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by freelove, Feb 17, 2007.

  1. freelove

    freelove MS-12....
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    So, I heard that when you are deciding on which medical school to attend you should look at their Board pass rates and their match list.

    Since I don't necessarily know which field of medicine I would like to specialize in as of right now, what am I supposed to be looking for when I pull up a medical school's match list?

    Probably a stupid question, but I would really like to know.
     
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  2. jsnuka

    jsnuka Senior Member
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    This might help give you an idea of the characterisitics of recent students and their profile in select specialty areas.

    https://services.aamc.org/Publicati...1&cftoken=C1E81CED-4339-4175-B525CB2CCD03CB36

    Folx on here use the board pass rates and match list as general scheme to extrapolate the likelihood that s/he will be able to get the same residency match since they went to the same school and the such.

    Some would say just get in a medical school. Do well while you are there and just as it was for medical school, get in to a residency program that best fits you and your family at that particular time in your life. Others will say taht you should look to do your residency at the TOP inistitution for that specialty and no others.

    Ultimately, it depends upon YOU and what best meets your needs and where you and yours will be most comfortable.

    Good Luck to you as you pursue your journey.:luck:
     
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  3. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic!
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    Unless you know the percentage of students who got one of their top 3 residency choices or what you want to do, I'd say ignore those lists. Most schools do well in residency placement, with the big names tending to place their students in big name residencies...but you have no way of knowing whether this is because the caliber of the student is better, the rep of their medical school helps, or whether its because they've only applied to big name residencies.

    This whole "looking at residency placement" lists when choosing a medical school is one of those long perpetuated pre-med student myths that really means little to YOU in the long run. As long as they are placing students in residencies where they are happy, the school should serve you well. Things like location, cost, facilities and friendliness of the students should be much more important to you, IMHO.
     
  4. Samoa

    Physician Pharmacist 10+ Year Member

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    Yeah, it's kind of unfortunate, but the only people who really know how good a match list is, are the people in that particular class at that particular school. Nobody else is really going to know who in the class got their first/second choice vs. who got totally hosed, and approximately where those people ranked in relation to everyone else.

    Also, the match list tells you how many people matched in a competitive field. It doesn't tell you how many people wanted to do so, and ended up matching in a backup field instead.

    Also, a school may be very good at placing people in certain fields, whereas applicants have to fend for themselves in others.

    Unless you know the stats of everyone listed, and some information on what their geographical preference was, along with where they matched (and where they got interviews), there's really no way to evaluate how good a school's residency placement is.

    However, there is one pretty solid indicator: if you see a bunch of people who only matched to prelim years, that's a school where the faculty aren't looking out for their students. No student wants to be unmatched, and a good school will advise them well on the front end, and make phone calls on the back end to ensure the best possible match for them.

    But again, unless you can see their grades and scores, you can't really tell whether it was someone in the bottom quarter trying for derm who didn't match, or a top 10% AOA applicant to general surgery who had to scramble into a prelim year instead. The former is just stupidity on the part of the applicant, the latter is a failure of the school.
     
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  5. AmoryBlaine

    AmoryBlaine the last tycoon
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    Agreed, a Match list is almost impossible to interpret unless you know everyone in the class.

    Example: the dude at the top of our class who will surely be AOA and has honored everything with 250+ on Step 1 is planning to do Medicine. For geographical reasons he will almost surely end up at a solid but not Ivory Tower training program. I know similarly impressive applicants who ended up in Family Medicine.

    Plus the specialty choices fluctuate quite a bit. Last year I think there were 2 people who matched into General Surgery, this year it's going to be around 10. That doesn't mean that this years class is better, just that they want to do different things. Last year Ortho: 2, this year: hopefully 9!
     
  6. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    Agree with those who suggest that these are not really the things you should focus in on as a premed. Look to location, price/scholarships, class schedule (full day or half day), grading (A-F, P/F or other iterations), whether the school has PBL or other novel academic components, ample research opportunities (if that interests you), reputation/prestige, and your gut feel when you are on campus. Allo board pass rates tend to be 90+% I think, so you probably shouldn't sweat this issue too much; it will largely be a matter of individual effort anyhow regardless of the school. And as others have suggested, match lists aren't going to be useful or intelligible to someone who doesn't know (1) the particular class, (2) the specialty one intends to go into, or (3) which programs are good vs malignant in which specialty.
     
  7. Joe Joe on da Radio

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    keep in mind that the reputation/quality of a residency program may differ drastically from that of the medical school. so while a certain match may look good on paper to a pre-allo, to those going into that field and in the know, it can anything but desireable.
     
  8. OP
    OP
    freelove

    freelove MS-12....
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    Thanks peeps!
     
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