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Residency Statistics

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by eternity94, May 11, 2007.

  1. eternity94

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    I know that this is a topic discussed a lot on here, but I was wondering if there were any reliable sources for residency statistics. In undergrad, you could look up specific medical schools and figure out exactly what was necessary to be competitive for their program. It wasn't assured that you would get in, but you could compare your MCAT scores and GPA and if you were a decent person with a strong resume, you'd have a pretty good shot.

    For me, residency and the match is sort of like a black box. I don't really have any idea what sorts of residency programs select what sorts of students. I know that they look at medschool transcripts, rec. letters, etc. but what are the actual "stats." For example - grades. Grades obviously have some impact, but is there a way to figure out what grades are competitive? eg. if you are at a school with p/hp/honors and you get hp in every course, but no honors what does that mean? I'd think those grades were pretty good (depending on your school), but it doesn't really give you a feel for what types of residency programs you would be competitive for.

    It was much easier in undergrad where you could say with a 4.0 GPA you are competitive for these schools, but with a 3.5 you are competitive for these.

    I know that grades aren't everything and that people from all quartiles get into all different types of programs, but they are at least a way for you to figure out where you start.
     
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  3. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    One thing you have to realize is that in med school the first two years of grades, though important, are reportedly far far less important to residency directors than how you do on step 1, the later year grades/evals, etc. So bear in mind that while grades are hugely important at the undergrad level, the early ones probably aren't going to make or break you for too many specialties, and thus aren't really much of a starting point. Obviously if you can honor things, your rank will be good, you may make AOA and you likely are better prepared going into your studying for Step 1. But in terms of deciding "what you aare competitive for", I think you need a Step 1 grade to make any sort of realistic estimate. (I think this notion was suggested to you in your other thread as well).
     
  4. naegleria brain

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    these come up so often and the answer is quite simple; TALK TO YOUR PD! they are generally very open, honest people and can give insight as to how they do it at your institution. for confirmation, go to another school's PD; this can be a crapshoot as to how theyll meet with outside students, but thus far theyve all been nice with me.

    here's the info i got:
    most important is boards. there's no way to compare a johns hopkins medical student with a drexel student; a baylor with umdnj, etc. the only unifying factor is your step 1. since step 1 is fairly reflective of your knowledge of medicine from your first two years, they use this as a benchmark. hence, number 1, time and again, BOARDS.

    second thing they look at is your clinical grades. these grades from 3rd and 4th year give insight as to what kind of person you are, whether you work well with others, can tolerate stress, etc. and really sets the benchmark for clinical medicine. so they like to look at those grades as well.

    LOR's. especially for competitive, smaller fields, where most acamedic physicians know each other, they like seeing letters from fellow classmates/colleagues. they trust those more than letters from people they havent heard from.

    and finally, research. especially i the competitive fields, this isn't really a luxury anymore, its soon becoming a requirement. it shows a propensity towards academics (which they like), and true interest/passion/diligence for that field.

    this is for more difficult fields; but shoot for the moon, if you find peds is your calling, you'll be in great position to get your pick of locations when time comes

    so, in summation:
    1 boards
    2 clinicals
    3 LORs
    4 research

    as far as the step 1 goes, go to nrmp's site and they give stats on that sort of thing. in general:
    220 - medicine/surgery
    ~240 - derm/ophtho/integrated plastics
    ~230-5 - ortho/neurosurg
    fp/peds/psych, etc < 220
     
  5. Critical Mass

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    You can convert your transcript into toilet paper if you want. It's not useful unless there are red flags on it.

    Ace the boards, impress the senior docs during M3, get some solid LOR's, and put a little bit of icing on it with some research.

    :luck:
     
  6. Tired

    Tired Fading away

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    I don't understand. Are you asking about what stats specific residency programs are looking for, or are you asking for the average stats of people who match in different specialties.
     
  7. Medical123

    Medical123 Senior Member

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    Look at the residency websites for the programs that you are interested in. Sometimes, but not often, they will list the average Step 1 and 2 statistics of the residents who matched with them. I also agree with talking to the program director at your school. They have a lot of "inside knowledge" and can somewhat guage your competitiveness at various programs.
     
  8. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    Based on his other thread, he seems concerned about what he's already shut out of based on early med school grades. (OP feel free to correct me if I misconstrued).
     
  9. eternity94

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    Actually I just wanted numbers. I'm over my concern of being "shut out" of anything, but I was just curious if there were any actual numbers. I understand the importance of step 1 scores, LORs, etc, but every time I talk to people at my school they just say "above average" or "do well" but nobody is willing to produce any physical numbers such as "most of our students come from quartile X of their class, their average step 1 score was X."


    This isn't a question about what is important for residency programs, but more about whether or not there is an easy way to get straightforward answers and solid numbers. Much like the way in undergrad you could get average MCAT scores and GPA for medical school programs.

    And yes, I've talked to the PD here and they won't give me any real answer, just kind of skirt around it.
     
  10. Critical Mass

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  11. Biscuit799

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    As a spinoff question, how does one start the process of researching programs? I plan on beginning this research in a couple months (as boards are looming), and have no idea where to begin given the hundreds of programs all across the fruited plains. My school's advisor is no help, as he seems to want to talk more about my roomate situation than my questions about residency programs...
     
  12. Medical123

    Medical123 Senior Member

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    You are absolutely right, there are 100's of residency programs out there and it is difficult to narrow down the number of programs to apply to. I started by looking in a particular area of the country and started researching programs in that area. Then, I started looking at some of the "big name" programs in other areas that I thought I might want to live to see if they had what I was looking for in a program. If you are interested in a particular specialty, you might want to look at programs that have very strong fellowships in that area.
     
  13. Long Dong

    Long Dong My middle name is Duc.

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    I would say first pick a specialty, only thing is that this changes alot as you go threw 3rd year. At least for me and alot of my classmates it did.
     
  14. Bubb Rubb

    Bubb Rubb Woo woo!

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    that's an excellent link, if only to show that some conventional wisdom spouted as truth here is quite far off...
     
  15. Medical123

    Medical123 Senior Member

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    Unfortunately, not a lot of programs are going to come right out and say "our cut-off for an interview is XYZ." Every program has their own criteria as to what their ideal applicant might be, but their goal is to fill their programs. Some programs might overlook a low Step 1 if someone did really well on Step 2. Other programs may value the student who has done extensive volunteer work in Africa over the AOA student with the 250+ on Step 1 who has not done anything outside of medical school. There is so much more to this process than numbers.

    Some programs even decide who to interview by looking at the SCHOOLS the applicant is coming from! In other words, if several previous students from school X entered the residency program at Y and all have performed extremely well, an average applicant from school X might have a better shot than a stellar one from school Z. It is a crazy process!

    My dean used to be a program director and she said that whether or not someone gets an interview can depend on something as minor as to who looks at your application and what mood they are in that day. I have seen super-stellar people in my class, AOA 250+ on the USMLE's, get rejected from programs that everyone thought that they had a good shot of being interviewed at, while a "less competitive" applicant gets an interview at the same place. There are no hard and fast rules. If you are truly interested in a particular program, I would recommend applying and see what happens, even if you know it is a reach for you.
     
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  17. Critical Mass

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    If there are some new people around here, some specialties have their own matches which take place earlier than NRMP. Some notables are urology and ophtho (both quite competative), many say to allow you to do something else if you don't match there first.

    I think that Neurology switched from San Fran to ERAS/NRMP, so their stats should be in the NRMP outcomes soon.

    Sometimes the statistics can be misleading. It's not like med school where strong candidates can feel free to blanket apply and then pick what they want after the fact. M4's have to develop a specialty-specific strategy. I'm not going to apply for derm, for instance, because I already know that I can't compete.

    Also watch out for the program websites. It's not uncommon for them to never update them.
     

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