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How to Apply

Application Overview

UC San Diego selects its residents through the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) and National Resident Matching Program.

Categories NRMP CODE
Categorical Internal Medicine 1049140C0
Physician-Scientist Training Program (PSTP) Two-Year Fast-Track: 1049140C2
Three-Year Research-in-Residency: 1049140C1
Internal Medicine Primary Care Track 1049140M0
Categorical Combined Medicine/Pediatrics 1049700C0

We generally receive approximately 3,500 completed applications per year and interview approximately 600 applicants. Our residency recruitment committee reviews all applications, evaluating multiple factors including:

  • General academic performance
  • Clinical performance (particularly in internal medicine and related rotations)
  • Personal qualities and achievements
  • Letters of recommendation

Application Requirements

In order to complete your Categorical Internal Medicine application, we require:

  • Your Dean's letter
  • Your medical school transcript
  • Your USMLE/National Board scores, Step I and II (if available, not mandatory for review). For DO applicants, we accept COMLEX in lieu of USMLE.
  • Letters of Recommendation: Per AAIM guidelines, categorical applicants will need one letter of recommendation from an internal medicine faculty member in addition to the Department Chair in Medicine (or designee) letter. We will accept additional letters via ERAS if you have them available. Recommendation letters should be addressed according to ERAS instructions.
  • Evidence of registration in the Selective Service program, or evidence of exempt status issued by the Veterans Affairs' Office of Academic Affiliations through a Status of Information letter. For more information, see Selective Service Registration (PDF).
  • Non-US citizens must be eligible for J-1 visa sponsorship.
  • For the 2024 ERAS® cycle, program signals will be fully integrated into the MyERAS application.  UC San Diego Internal Medicine Residency Program is participating in signaling.
    • For Internal Medicine 7 program signals are allowed.
    • You can signal our program by institution (rather than by our program tracks Categorical, PSTP, Primary Care). 
    • For 2024 the AAIM recommends students should signal their home institution and away rotations.
  • The supplemental ERAS application includes:
    • geographic preferences (by region and by urban or rural setting)
    • information about most meaningful work, volunteer, or research experiences and other impactful life events, if applicable
    • program signals
  • Learn more about the 2024 AAMC supplemental ERAS application.

Applying to Other Tracks

Physician-Scientist Training Program (PSTP)

Candidates interested in the Physician-Scientist Training Program (PSTP) should indicate their interest on the ERAS application form. Provide a short essay outlining prior research experience, publications, and areas of research interest — indicate the subspecialty, research, and faculty laboratories that suit your interests.

In addition to the ERAS application, please provide a minimum of one and preferably two letters of support from prior research mentors and senior colleagues. A letter of reference from the thesis advisor of MD/PhD candidates is required.

Applicants are required to submit a supplemental letter, ideally around one page in length, to provide a concise overview of their professional aspirations. This letter should articulate their career goals, summarize their research experience with emphasis on specific accomplishments, publications, or accolades, and delineate their reasons for pursuing a particular fellowship program and investigative path. Within the letter, applicants should craft a compelling vision of their career trajectory, detailing how their research to date has formed the foundation for this vision, and illustrating how the UCSD PSTP will be instrumental in realizing it. Additionally, within the letter, applicants are asked to identify any research scientists or potential mentors with whom they would like to engage during the interview process, reflecting their thoughtful consideration of the unique opportunities that UCSD offers.

In addition to the supplemental letter, applicants are also required to submit a brief essay, ideally no longer than 500 words, detailing the most challenging obstacle they have faced in their research career. This essay should describe the nature of the challenge or hardship, elucidate how they overcame it, and reflect on what motivates them to continue pursuing a research-intensive career despite this obstacle. This personal insight will provide a deeper understanding of the applicant's resilience, commitment, and passion for research.

You may send this information along with a CV via e-mail (preferred) to:

Colleen Reich PSTP Coordinator 9500 Gilman Dr., #0671 La Jolla, CA 92093 

Candidates applying for the PSTP are encouraged to plan a 2-day interview at UC San Diego. The 1st day will consist of visiting the residency program, and the 2nd day, the research program, faculty, and laboratories. PSTP interviews will be scheduled in conjunction with the traditional interviewing sessions. Individuals enter the PSTP upon application to the residency training program with concurrent acceptance into the research fellowship program.

Primary Care Track

Candidates interested in the Primary Care Track should indicate their interest on the ERAS application form. The application materials are the same as those required by the Categorical Program.

You are encouraged to submit applications for both the Categorical and Primary Care Programs. Candidates interviewing with the Primary Care Program will participate in the regular interview day and have at least 1 faculty interviewer from the Division of General Internal Medicine.

Primary Care Pathway information sessions will be scheduled throughout the interview season and you may schedule to attend one on your interview day or another day.

If you receive interview invitations from both Categorical Medicine and the Primary Care Program, contact us — you only need to complete one interview to be considered for both.

Advanced Positions

Physicians interested in advanced-level positions should contact by the first week in December.

Availability of these positions varies from year to year.

Combined Internal Medicine-Pediatrics Program

Candidates interested in the Combined Internal Medicine-Pediatrics Program should review the requirements on the Med-Peds site.

How to Apply for Med-Peds

Post-interview Communication Policy

In an effort to maintain the integrity of the match process, UC San Diego strictly adheres to the principles and rules outlined by the NRMP, APDIM, and AAIM regarding post-interview communication. See our joint Statement of Match Integrity (PDF) for further details.

Terms & Conditions

For samples of our contract, terms and conditions, and intern appointment and acceptance letter, see 2024-2025 Terms & Conditions