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How to be a a competitive applicant

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4 hours ago, DeeplySuperficial said:

Hello everyone,

I was wondering how one can be a competitive applicant for peds, internal medicine or family medicine. I understand that for some surgical specialties research looks good on CaRMs, is this the case for ped/FM/IM as well? And besides research what else can one do to be competitive? Thanks.

Research is probably more important for peds and IM in that order. Electives are key.

For FM, just do an elective or two and write a personal letter with a plausible reason for pursuing it.


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11 hours ago, Snooopy said:

Having research experience is also important for family medicine. 

You should certainly know research methodology for family, however I don't think it's that relevant in being a competitive applicant. I can't speak for other schools, however at mine I reviewed some 20 family applications each of this year and last, and have seen 1 family medicine related research project in that entire time. You can be very competitive without it, and the  vast majority of applicants are. In residency, our research project can be a QI project as well, with lots of support working through it so it's not all that needed for the future either.

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34 minutes ago, Snooopy said:

It is relevant for our program and makes an applicant more competitive. 

Do you mean research specifically in family medicine, or other fields count too? 

It's my understanding that there's not much research done by FM staff so where would you find such projects, from residents? (as @Rorzo mentioned)

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It's just helpful to have done SOME research for any CaRMS application. Nothing fancy. Sounds better if you've published/ presented it also. It gives something to talk about in case it comes up in the interview or personal letter.

For more competitive fields it demonstrates interest and perhaps helps you stand out more. Not as important as other aspects such as CV/ reference letters.

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