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UofT has many more hospitals and affiliated institutes so you can have your pick of whatever clinical opportunities you may wish especially those in subspecialized fields, many of which are not available in Queens. UofT also has world renowned hospitals and doctors, many more research opportunities and with more renowned staff and hence more impressive projects. Toronto is a big city that has everything you can ever hope to find in, much more entertainment, all sorts of restaurants and fun you can wish to have, many of which are not available in Kingston. This can be crucial when you try to relax from the heavy work schedule imposed during med school. You also have a great opportunity to make connections with staff in Toronto hospitals (which is crucial for building your CV and securing residency later on if you want to be in Toronto, and you will have school advantage to complete residency in Toronto later on). UofT is also world renowned school along with McGill and UBC, which comes with much better international reputation. UofT is also much more prestigious. Very few people turn down an offer from UofT, usually to stay in their province.

Queens is more of a small city school. Kingston is pretty small, with not much to do. So there is barely activities to do in the city, which is a turn off for many students who want to make the best of their time while still young. Opportunities are generally much less than you would find at UofT in all aspects. But its closely connected to the community around it in Kingston. You may have to travel to other cities though for certain clerkships because they may not be available at Queens. Lots of people turn down their offer, and wait list usually moves substantially.

 

There are definitely more points to be added to either school, and ultimately i think its your choice to make so no one can really decide for you. Everything depends on what your personal preferences are.

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U of T (because I am on the waitlist for Queen's lol).

But in all seriousness think about what type of lifestyle you like, big city or small town? Lots of stuff to do or tight knit cohort? Look at the differences in how curriculum is delivered, which do you prefer? What type of opportunities do you hope to take advantage of in med school and what does each offer for unique opportunities? Some aspect will be your deciding factor, just keep contemplating! Congrats!

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Shameless plug for U of T since I made the same choice between the two; you can get the rest and relaxation in small neighborhoods if you just drive an hour out of Toronto, the GTA is not all that urban. The reverse is not true for Kingston as you'll need to drive 2.5 hours to get to downtown Toronto which remains the nearest true metropolis. I'm sorry but I couldn't imagine living in Kingston for four years! Also the experience at U of T med is closer knit than people expect; sure you probably won't get to know all 259? names but we are divided into academies and you get to know the people in your own academy pretty well. U of T just has four close-knit cohorts, not one.

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Damn we getting grilled out here!! Haha. Please allow me to provide the QMed perspective :)

19 hours ago, Hanmari said:

Shameless plug for U of T since I made the same choice between the two; you can get the rest and relaxation in small neighborhoods if you just drive an hour out of Toronto, the GTA is not all that urban. The reverse is not true for Kingston as you'll need to drive 2.5 hours to get to downtown Toronto which remains the nearest true metropolis.

We were just recently at Game 1 against Cleveland which was on a Tuesday I believe (with regular 8:30 class the next morning). Most of us are from the GTA so we chill there quite frequently (also let's be real, nothing can get in the way of my Chipotle addiction, not even a 2 hour drive). We are also closer than you guys to Ottawa and Montreal (they've got some pretty cool stuff as well that Toronto doesn't), and we've been on trips to Philly/New York. 

19 hours ago, Hanmari said:

I'm sorry but I couldn't imagine living in Kingston for four years! Also the experience at U of T med is closer knit than people expect; sure you probably won't get to know all 259? names but we are divided into academies and you get to know the people in your own academy pretty well. U of T just has four close-knit cohorts, not one.

Every school has a good, close-knit community (or 4 in this case), nobody is denying that. Queen's is just on steroids! We take over entire restaurants, movie theatres, and dance floors on a weekly basis. I invited people to my 2-bedroom apartment before O-week and literally the entire class showed up. And that was before we had even met each other (though we've had a 100 person facebook group chat since May so it didn't feel like that). It was hard for me to imagine living in Kingston for four years as well, but Company > Location; I'd rather chill on a couch doing nothing with my homies than travel the world or some shit with people I don't know as well.

21 hours ago, crisronaldo said:

UofT has many more hospitals and affiliated institutes so you can have your pick of whatever clinical opportunities you may wish especially those in subspecialized fields, many of which are not available in Queens. UofT also has world renowned hospitals and doctors, many more research opportunities and with more renowned staff and hence more impressive projects. Toronto is a big city that has everything you can ever hope to find in, much more entertainment, all sorts of restaurants and fun you can wish to have, many of which are not available in Kingston. This can be crucial when you try to relax from the heavy work schedule imposed during med school. You also have a great opportunity to make connections with staff in Toronto hospitals (which is crucial for building your CV and securing residency later on if you want to be in Toronto, and you will have school advantage to complete residency in Toronto later on). UofT is also world renowned school along with McGill and UBC, which comes with much better international reputation. UofT is also much more prestigious. Very few people turn down an offer from UofT, usually to stay in their province.

Queens is more of a small city school. Kingston is pretty small, with not much to do. So there is barely activities to do in the city, which is a turn off for many students who want to make the best of their time while still young. Opportunities are generally much less than you would find at UofT in all aspects. But its closely connected to the community around it in Kingston. You may have to travel to other cities though for certain clerkships because they may not be available at Queens. Lots of people turn down their offer, and wait list usually moves substantially.

 

There are definitely more points to be added to either school, and ultimately i think its your choice to make so no one can really decide for you. Everything depends on what your personal preferences are.

LOL, I'll leave it up to OP to determine the degree of bias in this post :cool:

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I just want to say that Queen's does have an impressive match rate year on year. This year it was something like 96/100. I don't know how they do it, but they do it. Other points have been covered above.

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A lot of bias in previous posts. Having made the decision to come to Queen’s over Toronto four years ago, I can say that it was absolutely the right decision to make. Ultimately, the most important academic barometer of a program is how well it will allow you to match to the residency program of your choosing. I have posted the stats for Queen’s in a previous post, you’re welcome to take a look. Queen’s consistently has one of the highest match rates in the country coupled with the highest number of competitive specialty matches. This is not by chance, the Queen’s curriculum is optimized to ensure you have the best chance to succeed and has the best spread of elective time in my opinion. I would also like to address this home school advantage for residency. The smaller the school, the larger the home school advantage. I would say the home school advantage is pretty much non existant at U of T. U of T is a large school and it is easy to fall through the cracks which results in a very high portion of students going unmatched compared to smaller class sizes.

Prestige is completely worthless for medical school. It will not help you match to a program of your choice...literally no one cares about your medical school. The only time it could make a difference is if you wanted to go to the states, in which case any Canadian School would be trumped by the top American schools in terms of prestige. If you want to match to the states, the single most important thing will be your Step 1 score, not perceived prestige of your school.

With respect to Kingston being too small and boring, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Kingston is completely walkable which means you lose no time on commuting which translates to more time to go out with friends. There’s also a huge selection of restaurants and a bunch of water sports available to you. Kingston is full of students so the night life is also quite good.

Having completed my four years at Queen’s, I can absolutely state that you will not regret coming here. PM me if you’re still undecided.

 

 

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Lots of bias in the above post as well (but thats understandable, no one is going to side with another school over their own. Emotions always beat logic). This might be the first time anyone on this forum has said "home advantage is not a thing for residency", and I encourage you to check out other posts in this forum so you can check for yourself about this fact. Everyone in this forum tells you to pick the school where you see yourself doing residency. Home school advantage exists, and it exists everywhere. It is not a coincidence that UofT has by far the highest number of residents at UofT (which is the most competitive school for securing residency in Canada btw). If you look at any school in Canada, you will see that the highest number of residents (and by a big margin from competitors) come from that school itself. This is simply because you will have way more time and opportunities to connect with faculty, program directors, and doctors in UofT if you are in UofT. You will have the chance to make connections at your school in your core rotations, something you cannot do elsewhere. You will be closer to everything going on in your school to secure opportunities, which no doubt correlates to a much bigger chance getting into residency. Its not a coincidence that UofT students secure the biggest number of residencies in UofT EVERY SINGLE YEAR (and by a big margin, I think UofT students secured about 50% of residency spots in UofT last time I checked). Its also not a coincidence that almost no one declines their offer to Toronto, despite the school sending 250+ offers. While almost everyone at queens rejects their initial offers where the waitlist itself moves by nearly 100 spots every year even though they send only 100 initial offers.

As for falling in the cracks because its a big school, this is simply nonsense. UofT has 260 students but they are divided into 4 streams. So you get 4 close-knit communities, and you get about 60 student communities (even smaller than queens class itself). But on top of close-knit cohorts, UofT also has world-renowned hospitals and top specialists, (something you wont find in queens). And for the city itself, Kingston doesn't even come close to what Toronto could offer. If you are used to a big city like Toronto, it might be difficult to adjust to a much smaller and emptier town. 

You may also want to stay closer to family and friends around home? So which city you come from originally also plays a role. Having an established network of friends and family will definitely help, especially during clerkship which is a very stressful time, and you could need all the support you could get.

 

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5 hours ago, crisronaldo said:

 Its also not a coincidence that almost no one declines their offer to Toronto, despite the school sending 250+ offers. While almost everyone at queens rejects their initial offers where the waitlist itself moves by nearly 100 spots every year even though they send only 100 initial offers.

Although I disagree with his comment that the home school advantage is not a real thing (it is for sure), a lot of what you say here has more to do with the city than the school itself. People simply favour the city of Toronto over many other cities. It IS a world-class city, no doubt. But you imply here people pick U of T for some sort of prestige or superiority over other educational experiences. In my experience, having known dozens of people from my undergraduate program who made the decision between Toronto and other Ontario medical schools, it was typically for the city that people went to Toronto. Statistically, many people will be hailing from the GTA originally and want to reconnect with family and social circles. Many of these people who went to U of T didn't particularly even like the Toronto curriculum or the over-crowedness of the learning atmosphere but, again, picked it for geographical reasons. Toronto is Toronto -- if you are a big city person, no city in Canada can match it.  With this in mind, it is really unfair to use the number of offers sent out by each school to compare U of T and Queen's for QUALITY when you are pitching Toronto against Kingston. 

Aetherus makes good points that Queen's does have a recently revitalized curriculum and consistently boasts a match rate that is superior to more massive research centres like U of T and McMaster. Especially after U of T's basically record-setting abysmal match this year, this is true year after year. And Queen's does not necessarily send a large proportion of their class to family medicine either. Many of these matched people are Royal College bound specialists. 

Another point you make is with regards to world class lecturers and hospitals, implying that by default this makes your learning better. This is a naive view. Toronto absolutely does offer this and as Canadians we should all be collectively proud of the accomplishments we've made as a whole from coast to coast, including those made at Toronto. But unless you are at the cutting edge of research in your field, the research accomplishments of your school do not necessarily translate into better learning experiences. McMaster also offers world-class renown researchers and clinicians, especially in internal medicine, some of whom are among the most cited researchers in the world (top 10-20 in the world for all-time citations). I did part of my clerkship with one such person, and to be honest, it was probably one of my most underwhelming learning experiences, and not because my learning expectations were high. This person was quite nice, but they were distant, absent and too specialized and often missed the big picture for a student. Although it was cool to say I've worked with them, the bulk of my learning and development as a physician is with the everyday clinicians. Clinicians who are dedicated to the teaching of medical students; they may not be the most seasoned researchers, or world experts, but I would take a teacher passionate about his students' learning over that any-day. You're in medical school to learn the the basics - and as someone else on this forum said, you can learn that just as effectively at Saskatchewan than you would at U of T or McMaster.

I make a point of addressing your arguments because I worry that people would read them and fall to the dogma, selecting a school like U of T for the wrong reasons and not having their expectations met. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of good reasons to go to a school like Toronto, and if I had to select between most Ontario schools I would have gone to Toronto. But I do not believe the reasons you stated are those ones. 

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5 hours ago, crisronaldo said:

It is not a coincidence that UofT has by far the highest number of residents at UofT (which is the most competitive school for securing residency in Canada btw). If you look at any school in Canada, you will see that the highest number of residents (and by a big margin from competitors) come from that school itself. This is simply because you will have way more time and opportunities to connect with faculty, program directors, and doctors in UofT if you are in UofT. You will have the chance to make connections at your school in your core rotations, something you cannot do elsewhere. You will be closer to everything going on in your school to secure opportunities, which no doubt correlates to a much bigger chance getting into residency. Its not a coincidence that UofT students secure the biggest number of residencies in UofT EVERY SINGLE YEAR (and by a big margin, I think UofT students secured about 50% of residency spots in UofT last time I checked).

To add on to all the very valid points that Organomegaly made, I'd also keep in mind that UofT in general has more residency spots than any other school, and so statistically, an individual is more likely to match into Toronto residency than any single other residency program. On top of that, UofT has more students landing UofT residency, but their class size is also more than 2.5 times that of Queen's, so looking only at the raw numbers is misleading. Overall, if you look at the proportion of students who match into their 1st choice residency program, Queen's and UofT are pretty comparable, with Queen's being slightly higher in some years (59% vs. 52% in 2017 first iteration for example).

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I just wanted to clarify what I stated in my previous post. I did not say that home school advantage does not exist, I stated that it was amplified in smaller schools and diminished in larger schools. Let me explain my reasoning. Toronto has a large multi site clerkship, with adcom members split between multiple sites. This results in a decrease in chance that you will passively make connections with the important people for residency. Furthermore, many applicants from other schools will do research in Toronto during summer and will be able to network and make contacts that are equivalent to UofT med graduates. 

Queen’s on the other hand is much smaller and you will end up working with the program director for most specialties as you go through clerkship. There aren’t as many applicants doing electives or coming over during summers to do research and therefore you end up with much more connections then the rest of the applicant pool. 

Of course, many UofT graduates match back to Toronto for residency which might be a product of home school advantage but also the applicants preference. However when you look at the most competitive specialties, the home school advantage at Toronto seems to be much less than other schools. 1/4 Toronto Ophthalmology applicants matched to Toronto, 1/5 ENT applicants and 1/5 Plastics applicants. Many more Toronto applicants (probably close to 12-14) for these 3 specialties went unmatched.

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16 hours ago, Organomegaly said:

Another point you make is with regards to world class lecturers and hospitals, implying that by default this makes your learning better. This is a naive view. Toronto absolutely does offer this and as Canadians we should all be collectively proud of the accomplishments we've made as a whole from coast to coast, including those made at Toronto. But unless you are at the cutting edge of research in your field, the research accomplishments of your school do not necessarily translate into better learning experiences. McMaster also offers world-class renown researchers and clinicians, especially in internal medicine, some of whom are among the most cited researchers in the world (top 10-20 in the world for all-time citations). I did part of my clerkship with one such person, and to be honest, it was probably one of my most underwhelming learning experiences, and not because my learning expectations were high. This person was quite nice, but they were distant, absent and too specialized and often missed the big picture for a student. Although it was cool to say I've worked with them, the bulk of my learning and development as a physician is with the everyday clinicians. Clinicians who are dedicated to the teaching of medical students; they may not be the most seasoned researchers, or world experts, but I would take a teacher passionate about his students' learning over that any-day. You're in medical school to learn the the basics - and as someone else on this forum said, you can learn that just as effectively at Saskatchewan than you would at U of T or McMaster.

Dont get me wrong, all programs in Canada will give you a good education. By top-tier specialists, I didnt mean in terms of teaching, but more so in terms of securing opportunities to work with them for example in research projects. By their nature, they will be taking higher profile projects in their work, so students who join them get to be part of that and get to build a more impressive CV come CARMS time.

16 hours ago, Organomegaly said:

Aetherus makes good points that Queen's does have a recently revitalized curriculum and consistently boasts a match rate that is superior to more massive research centres like U of T and McMaster. Especially after U of T's basically record-setting abysmal match this year, this is true year after year. And Queen's does not necessarily send a large proportion of their class to family medicine either. Many of these matched people are Royal College bound specialists. 

 

Similarly you can't compare match numbers that way. UofT has many more students gunning for very very competitive specialities without backing up, which by definition means a lot of students dont end up getting into.

 

15 hours ago, xiphoid said:

To add on to all the very valid points that Organomegaly made, I'd also keep in mind that UofT in general has more residency spots than any other school, and so statistically, an individual is more likely to match into Toronto residency than any single other residency program. On top of that, UofT has more students landing UofT residency, but their class size is also more than 2.5 times that of Queen's, so looking only at the raw numbers is misleading. Overall, if you look at the proportion of students who match into their 1st choice residency program, Queen's and UofT are pretty comparable, with Queen's being slightly higher in some years (59% vs. 52% in 2017 first iteration for example).

Proportion has already been taken into account, whichever school you look at you find more students coming from that school itself than any other school whether its a small or big school. You dont see UofT grads for example having top spot of residents in any other school, even though uoft is bigger.

 

I think Atherus last post points to something, ENT, Optho, and Plastics are among the 3 most competitive specialties to get into in Canada. Just having that number of students actually trying to match into them from UofT shows you why you see some students go unmatched, and again shows my point that more students gunning for very competitive specialties are in UofT. If anyone is gunning for those specialties, they should realistically be expecting to go unmatched rather than matched imo, because the chances are just so slim.

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I'm convinced at this point that Queen's is the place to go if you want a competitive specialty. I turned down my Queen's offer in 2016 and don't regret it, but their match stats are undeniably amazing year after year. I spoke with a friend at Queen's who told me about some of the people that matched in the 2018 class:
 

2/2 matched ophtho

2/3 matched plastics (Queen's doesn't have a home program)

2/2 matched derm (Again Queen's doesn't have a home program, the 2 applicants took BOTH of Calgary's derm spots)

I think 5/6 matched Royal College EM? (Either 4/5 or 5/6)

2/2 matched ENT

After 1st round, 96/100 matched. After 2nd round it was 99/100 - the 3 that matched I believe got child neuro (the person originally wanted neuro or neurosurg), internal and family. The 4th person opted to not apply in 2nd round.

These numbers are unheard of, and no U of T home school advantage has helped them compete with this.

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5aa7357d3c833_ScreenShot2018-03-12at10_19_06PM.thumb.png.41bcd07e23359cc4e419c8dad246708c.png5aa7381abfef3_ScreenShot2018-03-12at10_19_25PM.thumb.jpg.d15aca15fadc6389c28865914c80c3bc.jpg

Here are the complete stats for Queen’s this year in terms of discipline as well as location after first Iteration. 

To the point made earlier about Toronto having more people gunning for competitive specialties, I disagree. If you look at Queen’s this year, only 23% of the class went into Family Medicine. In contrast 35% of the class matched to a EROADS specialty. 

If anyone can supply this thread with a similar comparison for UofT this year, it would make this debate more objective.

My goal here is not to diminish UofT, I think it is a great school with a lot of advantages. However, often times, these forums end up being very Toronto centric and I hope to demonstrate that other schools are superior to Toronto in certain key aspect of training.

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