Competitiveness: Medium

Anesthesiology is an advanced specialty and a good choice for any medical professional interested in technology, quick critical thinking, varying patients and work settings, and an occasionally high pressure work environment. The specialty has seen a recent rise in popularity, increasing the competitiveness over the last few years. Many applicants have AOA membership and honors in their clinical rotations. The training path to licensure in Anesthesiology can be also be complex. There are full categorical training programs, but many programs will require applicants to secure a (PGY-1) position in primary care, surgery, or a Transitional Year before starting their PGY-2 Anesthesiology program. It is also highly suggested that residency applicants obtain at least one or two Letters of Recommendation from Anesthesiologists in order to be more competitive.

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IMG Profile

Average Stats for a Matched US IMG in 2018:

  • USMLE Step 1 score: 231
  • USMLE Step 2 CK score: 237
  • Research: 1.5
  • Abstracts/Presentations/etc: 2.1
  • Work: 3.2
  • Volunteer: 4.2

Average Stats for a Matched Non-US IMG in 2018:

  • USMLE Step 1 score: 240
  • USMLE Step 2 CK score: 244
  • Research: 2.2
  • 1z
  • Abstracts/Presentations/etc: 4.5
  • Work: 6.1
  • Volunteer: 3.1

Specialty Factors

Every specialty has unique factors they want each candidate to have in their residency application. NRMP conducts regular Program Director surveys to identify which parts of the residency application are most important in differing specialties. Among the information gathered, Program Directors were asked to to cite factors they used to select candidates for interviews. They were also asked to rate each factor on a scale from 1 (least important) to 5 (most important).

The Top 5 Most Important Anesthesiology Application Factors

Percentage of Programs Citing Each Factor

  1. USMLE Step 1 Score (97%)
  2. Specialty specific Letters of Recommendation (88%)
  3. MSPE (84%), Grades in required clerkship (84%)
  4. Class Ranking/quartile (83%)
  5. USMLE Step 2 CK (79%), Personal Statement (79%), Any failed attempt in USMLE (79%)

Average Importance Rating for Each Factor (scale of 1 to 5)

  1. Flagged by NRMP (4.7), Any failed attempt in USMLE (4.7)
  2. Evidence of professionalism and ethics (4.5)
  3. USMLE Step 1 score (4.4), Lack of gaps in medical education (4.4)
  4. USMLE Step 2 CK (4.3), Passing USMLE Step 2 CS (4.3)
  5. MSPE (4.2), Grades in required clerkship (4.2), Personal prior knowledge of applicant (4.2), Grades in clerkship in desired specialty (4.2), Audition elective/rotation within department (4.2), Leadership qualities (4.2), Consistency of grades (4.2)

Fast Facts

Total Training 4 years, One year preliminary, 3 years clinical anesthesia, Extra year for any subspecialty
Average Residency Salary $56,000
Average Work Week 61 Hours
Peak Interview Months November, January
Key Organizations and Societies: American Association of Anesthesiology
  • Many program deadline early from October to November to prepare for interviews

Match Statistics

Main Residency Match and Post-Match Stats


IMGs Matched


Number of Programs/Positions


Post-Match SOAP Unfilled Positions

Main Residency Match

Advanced (PGY-2)

Post-Match SOAP

Program Track Advanced (PGY-2)
Participating Programs 8 9
Filled Programs 5 9
Positions Available 16 27
Filled Positions 8 27


  • Critical Care Medicine
  • Hospice and Palliative Medicine
  • Pain Medicine
  • Pediatric Anesthesiology
  • Sleep Medicine
  • Adult Cardiothoracic
  • Obstetric Anesthesiology