It might be mid-October, November, or even later and you are asking yourself, “Am I too late to apply to ERAS for medical residency?”
In short, it is very possible that some programs’ application deadlines have already passed and applying to them would simply be a waste of time and resources. However, what about the programs whose deadlines have NOT passed? Is it too late?
What to Consider
Ask yourself this question: “How prepared am I to apply right now?” If your answer is 100% prepared and my application is strong, you should likely consider taking steps towards applying.
However, if you have a poorly prepared application, missing exam scores, and multiple unaddressed Red Flags, it is important to consider the pros and cons of applying versus waiting.
Simply put, making it into residency, especially for IMGs, is a challenge that takes months and months of planning and preparation. If you are late to the game, ask yourself, “Am I ready to commit myself to apply to 150-300 programs right now with the chance of having to apply again next season when I am more prepared?” “Can I afford to apply twice if necessary?”
The Bottom Line – When is Too Late?
The majority of applications are sent to programs on the first day of applying, September 15th. Many interviews are sent out within 1-4 weeks after this. However, programs do usually have 2 or even 3 rounds of interviews throughout the season. So, if you apply late (with a persuasive and complete application), you still may be considered for these secondary rounds of interview invitations.
However, the longer you wait, the lower your chances become. Applying beyond the beginning of November represents a significant decrease in your overall chances of receiving interviews. However, if you expect to interview and get Matched, you still need to apply to essentially as many programs as you are able. Luckily, Match A Resident provides application deadlines for each program found on Customized Residency Lists.
Otherwise, consider taking time over the next 8-12 months to better prepare yourself for residency application next season.
Just remember, nothing gone halfway will make it. Give it your all right now, or prepare yourself to the max to optimize your chances for next season. The choice is yours.
Questions for Match A Resident? Leave them in the comments below!