Letter of recommendation for residency ------>
Combined Med Peds
Obstetrics & Gynecology
"Letters of recommendations are tickets to interviews but in many cases it can be mourning letters for the applicant's match indeed" (Alfred John MD, Program director).
The above expression summarizes the importance of the LORs submitted by ERAS to residency programs. As you know, the so called letters of reference for students or graduates applying to residency programs come in the 2nd position in importance after the Step 1 USMLE scores and come just in top of the personal statements which in turn come in the 3rd position. There are many factors that program directors and faculty interviewing applicants look into when reading the LORs. If they are able to grab these important keys from the first eyeballing of the letter they will give it attention and read it. If the letter from its appearance doesn't encourage the reader to continue reading then your application will be skipped to the next one. Yes remember that programs review more than 1000 application in matter of 2 weeks this means they have to read about 3000 to 4000 LORs in addition to personal statements which is another common problem for applicants which will talk about in another place. The main task of the letter writer is to pass the first step which is the eyeballing phase. To do so there are many factors we will talk about in side the guides you can find the links to on the right side of this page in each specific specialty. Like one of the important things is "who to write". Not every person can write a letter for applicant. Like you can't ask a doctor who you didn't work with or a paramedic to write you one. Another important factor is the average length of the letter that directors can tolerate before they skip your application. Not only the length but the number of paragraphs, the way they are composed, the information in each one, waived or not, what combination to use US LORs versus IMG LORs, the font used and the quality of information included etc...
One piece of advice here, if you are searching for USCE, do it only in ACGME certified residency programs where previous applicants who match also did, you can find the complete list here: USCE. Don't fall in the mistake previous applicants did, don't go behind internet companies that takes your money and promise you observership in private clinics then give you copy paste letters that harm your application more than it benefit.
If you are the one writing the letter to your students, or if you are a student helping your chairman or attending writing a letter because he or she is busy, you need to follow these guidelines so your LOR look appealing to the person attempting to review the application. On the right column of this page your will find the links to the various specialties letter of recommendations examples and guidelines that will help you success in your important task.
For IMG friendly residency programs lists and Match Criteria please visit ApplicantGuide.com