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How A New Program May Influence Future Dermatology Residency Placements

It is clear that preference signaling played a major role in interview determination”
— McKenzie Dirr
CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA, UNITED STATES, July 12, 2022 / -- The medical residency match, managed by the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) organization, which utilizes the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS), determines where graduating medical seniors will continue their education as resident physicians. Some medical career paths are more popular than others and as a result, some specialties are overwhelmed with applications that could number in the thousands. Due to this issue, novel methods for increasing match success and match operations have been implemented.

A new article in SKIN: The Journal of Cutaneous Medicine reviewed the newly initiated ERAS Preference Signaling Program in the dermatology residency application match. First initiated by otolaryngology, the purpose of preference tokens in the residency match is to further highlight a student’s interest prior to the release of interview invitations. Within dermatology, each student is allowed three tokens to distribute to various programs, which are not ordinally ranked.

As reported by the American Association of Medical Colleges, one-fourth of dermatology programs received up to 53% of preference signals from all applicants. This may be due to individual program factors, with more competitive programs receiving more signals. It is clear that preference signaling played a major role in interview determination, with programs reporting preference signal usefulness in identifying unlikely candidates who may have been initially overlooked due to the volume of applications received. Despite these interesting facts, more studies are needed to determine the role preference signaling plays in the dermatology match.

DOI: 10.25251/skin.6.4.16

SKIN: The Journal of Cutaneous Medicine® is a peer-reviewed online medical journal that is the official journal of The National Society for Cutaneous Medicine. The mission of SKIN is to provide an enhanced and accelerated route to disseminate new dermatologic knowledge for all aspects of cutaneous disease.

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McKenzie Dirr
Medical University of South Carolina,