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ALL CAPS

October 23, 2011

ALL CAPS don’t belong in applications

Caps Lock is a bad thing to use on your residency application. When I see ALL CAPS, I assume you are shouting. ALL CAPS stand out in a bad annoying way. Don’t use ALL CAPS.

I also see great applications with very little or no USCE. If you don’t have USCE then you may be considered a higher risk candidate. If you are a student and are thinking about training in the US, do a rotation or two or three at hospitals in the US while you are a student. USCE as rotations done as a student are ideal as you are evaluated by faculty on your performance just as US medical students are.

I see that the degree dates on lots of IMG candidates occur months after the medical school program finishes. This is the time that the candidate may do his USCE as a student. Technically if you have not graduated and did USCE between the end of coursework and the award of the degree date then your USCE occurred as a medical student (which is ideal).

Make sure that it is clear what type of clinical experience you have done.
Clerkship is done as a student.
Sub-internship is done as a student.
Observership is done as a student or as a graduate.
Externshp can be done as a student but is more likely done after one graduates.
I encourage you to make it clear so that those reviewing your application don’t have to hunt down what type of USCE it is. Make it easy for me. Remember that a clerkship is not an experience that you can legally do as a graduate. Putting anything as a “clerkship” that is done after your medical school graduation date is misleading.

If you are from a Caribbean University and did rotations in the US, it is helpful if you list them in the experience section. Otherwise one has to hunt down where you did your rotations.

Everything gets looked at very closely. You want your application to be as good as it can be.

The views expressed in this post are those of Kenneth Christopher, MD and do not necessarily reflect the views of Dr. Christopher’s employer Partners HealthCare.

Categories: Application
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