Medical student resources

Medical Residency: The Basics

What? Residency is a required stage of medical training in the United States which occurs after the completion of medical school. A residency program offers in-depth training in a specific medical specialty such as pediatrics, surgery, or anesthesiology. Medical residents are paid during this training period, ranging from a salary of $35,000 to $50,000 depending on their specialty, location, and year of training.

Who? Medical residents are supervised by attending physicians. The residents are referred to as PGY-1, PGY-2, etc; PGY is short for "Post-Graduate Year," and the number that follows corresponds to the year in training.

When? A new crop of medical residents will begin their next phase of training on July 1st. Residency can last between 3 to 5 years, depending on the particular field. Some specialties may require physicians to complete a fellowship after residency training is complete.

The application process for a residency program typically begins the summer before the fourth year of medical school. Read more about the National Residency Match Program for a better understanding.

Where? Residency programs typically take place in university-affiliated hospitals or community-based clinics. The American Medical Association maintains a database of all accredited residency training programs in the United States, and you can search for individual programs by specialty or location.

More about residency programs

Surviving the first year of your residency programs
New residency positions are needed to address the physician shortage
Take a look inside a year in a medical residency, by John Schumann

How competitive am I for residency?

Will you be AOA?:Yes
No
Have you done research?:Yes
No
Do you have publications?:Yes
No
Are you a US senior in med school?:Yes
No