Guide to the Residency Application Process

 Residency Application System


Research Residency Programs

  • Departmental Career Advisors: Contact them early for help identifying programs and to review your application lists.
  • Explore residency program websites for information on program culture, mission and values, staffing, career opportunities, and geographic setting.
  • Attend residency program preview events for the 2020-21 season
  • FREIDA Online: Search 9,000+ graduate medical education programs by state or specialty.
  • TexasSTAR: Target your application to programs from which you are more likely to receive interviews and at which you may ultimately match. Access is granted via an email in June to students participating in the Match for the upcoming year.
  • Doximity Residency Navigator: Search residency program reviews. These are submitted from peer nominations, ratings, and hand-written reviews. This resource is similar to “Yelp” so be discerning when considering the information.
  • Residency Explorer: Explore and compare residency programs in 11 specialties and compare your profile to applicants who matched at each program.
  • NRMP Main Match Data: View programs with unfilled positions in the previous match year.
  • ACGME: Determine if a program is on probation. Select “programs or institutions with probationary status” and then sort for specialty.
  • Residency Programs Interview Materials Library: Online library of information collected by UW medical students during interviews at residency programs.


Interviews and Match


Match Timelines

ERAS & NRMPSan Francisco (Ophthalmology)Military (MODS)Urology
June 8, 2020
Registration opens. Students may begin working on their application
September 15, 2020
Target application date (exact dates vary by individual residency program)
November 5, 2020
Applications and rank lists due
June 8, 2020
Registration opens. Students may begin working on their application
September 1, 2020
ERAS opens for application submissions
January 25, 2021
Rank order lists due
Dec. 7-11, 2020
Joint Services Graduate Medical Education Selection Board
Mid-Nov. into January 2021
Virtual interviews
October 21, 2020
MSPE and applications released to residency programs

NRMP registration begins
February 1, 2021
Match results released
Results released to applicants
January 12, 2021
Rank order lists due
February 1, 2021
NRMP rank order system opens
February 1, 2021
Match results released
March 3, 2021
NRMP rank order lists due
March 15, 2021
NRMP SOAP begins
March 19, 2021
NRMP Match results released


Understand Match Programs

NRMP – The National Resident Matching Program. Every specialty area, with the exceptions of Ophthalmology and Urology, use NRMP to match applicants with their respective program. ​NRMP provides an impartial venue for matching applicants’ preferences for residency positions with program directors’ preferences for applicants. Each year approximately 16,000 U.S. allopathic medical school seniors and 15,000 graduates of osteopathic, Canadian or foreign medical schools compete for approximately 24,000 residency positions. – The NRMP Match is in March.

SF Match – The San Francisco Match program handles Ophthalmology residency programs. The SF Match is in January.

Urology Match – The Urology Match program (through the American Urological Association) handles Urology programs. The Urology Match is in January.

Military Match – The Military Match is in December.


Residency Application Components

Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) – All specialty areas use ERAS except for ophthalmology.​

1. Personal Statement

2. Curriculum Vit​ae (CV)

3. Letters of Recommendation

4. The M​SPE (formerly “Dean’s Letter”)

5. Medical sc​hool transcript

6. USMLE Score Report

7. Professional Headshot Portraits


Select Residency Programs