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Are references/CAF as important as they use to be?


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Just wondering what people's thoughts are on about references and the CAF form.  Just some questions i have been thinking about

I know in general you want to have good references and someone who will talk nicely about you on the CAF form. But does it matter if you have a doctor or professor do the CAF form, does that really help your application. 

Does having an amazing references letter really help your application or do school use it more to check if there are any red flags? 

Why don't they do full reference letters anymore?

 

Thanks:)

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Hey- I can't answer about the importance of the reference letters, as only the adcoms really know that. What I can say from personal experience is that the "prestige" of your referees, at least for OMSAS, does not matter. My references were my high school principal, an old sports coach (also from the time of high school), and my supervisor at the place I volunteer. No doctors, no professors. I was initially worried that these were "weak", but it did not seem to impact me negatively at all (I received three interviews and two acceptances in Ontario). I hope this helps!

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I personally don't think reference letters for med school matter much. I would guess that most schools use them to identify red flags. They probably aren't that helpful for this anyways as its rare for a referee to write bad stuff about the applicant. They probably don't do full references anymore because schools have realized how useless they are. It's good that 3 refs are still a part of the application process because it shows that you made connections with at least 3 individuals who are willing to advocate for you but beyond that, I don't see them being an important part.

I think only UofT may consider the quality of them but I'm not sure to what extent.

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On 7/4/2020 at 7:26 PM, bigsadpremed said:

Just wondering what people's thoughts are on about references and the CAF form.  Just some questions i have been thinking about

I know in general you want to have good references and someone who will talk nicely about you on the CAF form. But does it matter if you have a doctor or professor do the CAF form, does that really help your application. 

Does having an amazing references letter really help your application or do school use it more to check if there are any red flags? 

Why don't they do full reference letters anymore?

 

Thanks:)

Hi! Everyone has added great input. Personally for me, I chose people who knew me long term (2-4 years). Mine were a humanities prof, physician, and research prof! 

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