In order to ensure you have the best chances of securing a residency position in North America, you have to be an excellent student. While there are minimum requirements for applying for these positions, it is important to note that everybody who applies has these requirements met, and so it becomes imperative to distinguish yourself in some way. It then stands to reason that the more distinguished students will be the stronger applicants.
This guide will serve both purposes. Part I will be dedicated to essential requirements in order to apply for residency in US and Canada, while Part II will focus on ways in which you can develop academically in order to become a stronger applicant and future doctor.
ACGME – Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education
CaRMS – Canadian Residency Matching Service
ECFMG – Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates
ERAS – Electronic Residency Application System
LCME – Liaison Committee on Medical Education
LoR – Letter of Recommendation
MCCQE – Medical Council of Canada Qualifying Examination
MCQ – Multiple choice questions
NAC OSCE – National Assessment Collaboration Objective Structured Clinical Examination
NRMP – National Resident Matching Program
USMLE – United States Medical Licensing Examination
Terms Defining Applicants:
CMG – Canadian Medical Graduate
CSA – Canadian Studying Abroad
FMG – Foreign Medical Graduate
IMG – International Medical Graduate
Non-US IMG – Non-US Citizen International Medical Graduate
USMG – United States Medical Graduate
US-IMG – United States citizen International Medical Graduate
Clarification: While there is considerable overlap between these terms, many are used differently between countries, and some are official terms while others are only used on forums to differential between graduation status. Some of these terms are used interchangeably, for example FMG and Non-US IMG. However, the former is used predominantly on forums, while the latter is the official denomination on official documents. In the US, IMG is a blanket term that includes both citizens and non-citizens. In Canada, you are not eligible to apply for residency if you are not a citizen or landed immigrant. As such, IMG refers to more mature applicants who moved here with their families, while CSA refers to students who grew up in Canada but went abroad to study.
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