The United States Medical Licensing Examination ® (USMLE®) is a three-step examination for medical licensure in the United States and is sponsored by the National Board of Medical Examiners® (NBME®) and the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB).
The USMLE assesses a physician’s ability to apply knowledge, concepts, and principles, and to demonstrate fundamental patient-centered skills, that are important in health and disease and that constitute the basis of safe and effective patient care. Each of the three Steps of the USMLE complements the others; no Step can stand alone in the assessment of readiness for medical licensure.
Residency in the USA
After clearing the USMLE comes the most important part for which students have been waiting for so long is to apply to programs in the USA is the Applications for Residency matching process. For applying to the USA, there are a few components which need to be understood well.
- Before Application
- After Application
Student must ensure that all USMLE Exam scores are ready.
Start Obtaining Tokens from ERAS by early July (Electronic Residency Application Service), using the MyEras
Keep all documents ready before you start applying including a few as follows:
- ERAS Application
- Personal Statement
- Letters of recommendation
- Evidence of Clinical Rotations
- Medical School Transcript
- Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE)
- USMLE Transcripts
- ECFMG Status Report
Importance of USMLE Scores
Residency programs use USMLE scores to filter at the very start of the process, hence it is very important to own the best USMLE scores. Competitive programs want both steps passed on 1st attempt & hence Just passing will not give you the competitive edge.
The Residency Match Process
Each year, programs submit the number of positions that they wish to have filled through the National Residency Matching Program (NRMP). ERAS receives documents from the applicant, the ECFMG, U.S. medical schools, and the USMLE. These documents are formatted, scanned, and assembled into individual applicant packets, and are electronically sent to as many programs as the applicant chooses. Programs evaluate applications and determine which applicants they want to interview during November, December, and January.
Residency Interview Process
Preparing for Residency Interviews
Since the majority of residency programs receive many more applications than they have interview slots, receiving an invitation to interview means that you have survived the first round of eliminations.
You Have A Residency Interview. What Next?
Learn as much as you can about the program so that you arrive prepared to ask thoughtful and specific questions. This demonstrates your interest and helps you evaluate one program against another once you’ve completed all your interviews. You’ll receive information from the program; but you should also look at the electronic residency database (FRIEDA) and any websites for the program or its affiliated hospitals.
How Are Residency Interviews Used?
Residency programs use the interview process as a way to get to know you firsthand rather than through written materials. They are interested in your motivation for medicine and for their specialty, in your communication skills and personality, in your self-confidence and your ability to handle the interview. They hope to glean insights about your level of determination, reliability, integrity, and how you might respond to criticisms and the stresses of training. They also try to weigh how you might fit in with their current residents and staff. For IMG candidates, they are especially interested in your English language skills and your understanding of the residency training process.
A Glimpse to a few sample questions asked during the Residency Interview.
The Rank Order List
After interviews, the programs list applicants by preference (rank order list). Simultaneously, applicants submit a list of programs in rank order. Applicants are electronically matched to the highest-ranked program on their list that has offered a position to that applicant.
Students who have not matched are usually informed the day before match results are announced. Students and their schools begin “SOAP” (Supplemental offer and acceptance program) to find unfilled residency training positions.
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After all the preparation and a high score, it’s very important for you to apply where there are higher chances to get into a Residency Program. Also it is important to prepare well for the interviews as well. Thereby Kaplan assists you in this process through its “Residency Prep” program.
Through Residency prep a student will have access to:
1. Application Support: Consultants with Program Director experience review your personal statement, ERAS® application, and interview responses via our Application Support website.
2. Simulated Interviews: 3 practice interviews and feedback on presentation skills via face-to-face video calls with standardized Interviewers trained by program directors to simulate the interview experience.
3. Doubt Clarification Sessions: Program Directors are available to answer any questions you have about obtaining residency. Sessions run every Thursday from May through September each year.