Tips for Foreign Medical Residency Applicants: Plan Ahead


In less than a month, the medical residency application process for 2018 is going to get underway. If you are a foreign medical student or medical school graduate planning to apply for a residency program in the United States in 2018, one of the best things you can do right now is to get a jump start on the process by familiarizing yourself with the application timeline and the basic application requirements. That way, you can create an application preparation plan that makes the most of all the time you have this summer, so you won’t be left scrambling to get everything together at the last minute.

The 2018 ERAS Timeline for Medical Residencies

The Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) has released the official dates for the 2018 medical residency application process. ERAS 2018 officially begins on June 6, 2017, when you will be able to log on to MyERAS and start working on your application. You have all summer to get your application ready, and you can start sending it out to residency programs on September 6, 2017. A week later, on September 15, 2017, they will start receiving your application. On October 1, 2017, your Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE) will be released to the schools as well.

Understanding the Components of the Application

As you get ready to start the medical residency application process, it is important to know what materials you will be expected to submit. Here is a brief overview of the application components for foreign medical residency applicants. Stay tuned to the blog for more in-depth discussions of each component this summer!

  • ECFMG Certification. Before you can apply for a residency program in the United States, you will need to have earned your ECFMG certification. For this, you will need to meet basic medical education requirements, submit an application, and pass a medical science and a clinical examination.
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV). On the CV, you have the chance to highlight your educational achievements, professional experience, personal interests, and other activities.
  • Letters of Reference. Most residency programs require the submission of three letters of reference. As a foreign medical graduate, it is important to note that some residency programs will require you to have at least one letter from a physician who is based in the United States.
  • Personal Statement. In your personal statement, you have the chance to tell your story — who you are, why you want to be a physician, and why you are an excellent candidate for a residency program in the United States.
  • Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE). This document will be released to your chosen residency programs by the dean of your medical school on October 1. Before then, you will need to meet with the dean to discuss your performance over the course of your education.

Looking ahead to a summer of application preparation can seem overwhelming, but there’s no need to start getting stressed out just yet! You still have lots of time to start blocking out your summer and coming up with a plan to contact letter potential letter-writers, meet with your school’s dean, and draft (and re-draft!) the essential components of your application. Now that you have an idea of what to expect this summer, you can be sure to stay on top of all the requirements throughout the 2018 medical residency application process!
Need more information about residency placement? FMG Portal offers a wide range of valuable resources. Contact us today!