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Pathology

Competitiveness: Low

Pathology is a fascinating medical specialty in which pathologists take the many clues the body has to offer and puts it together into a diagnosis. This is a specialty more for medical professionals who like working in labs as opposed to direct primary care. Pathology training is typically 3 to 4 years (depending on the program) and most residents will receive training in in both anatomic pathology (AP) and clinical pathology (CP). From there, Pathology also has a diverse amount of subspecialty options to delve into. While Pathology is a relatively small specialty, it is not considered one of the more competitive specialties, especially for residency candidates truly interested in Pathology. It is suggested that applicants applying to Pathology residency programs should try to do a few away rotations in Pathology and research.

ENTER YOUR CREDENTIALS Customize your Pathology program list

IMG Profile

Average Stats for a Matched US IMG in 2018:

  • USMLE Step 1 score: 226
  • USMLE Step 2 CK score: 230
  • Research: 2.1
  • Abstracts/Presentations/etc: 5.0
  • Work: 4.3
  • Volunteer: 3.9

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

  • USMLE Step 1 score: 230
  • USMLE Step 2 CK score: 233
  • Research: 2.7
  • Abstracts/Presentations/etc: 11.5
  • Work: 4.5
  • Volunteer: 3.0

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 Pathology Application Factors

Percentage of Programs Citing Each Factor

  1. Specialty specific Letters of Recommendation (95%)
  2. USMLE Step 1 score (90%)
  3. Perceived commitment to specialty (88%)
  4. USMLE Step 2 CK score (85%)
  5. Personal Statement (80%)

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

  1. Flagged by NRMP (4.9)
  2. Specialty specific Letters of Recommendation (4.6), Any failed attempt in USMLE (4.6), Fluency in language spoken by patient population (4.6)
  3. Evidence of professionalism and ethics (4.5)
  4. Perceived commitment to specialty (4.4)
  5. Grades in clerkship in desired specialty (4.2), Consistency of grades (4.2)

Fast Facts

Total Training 3 to 4 years
Average Residency Salary $55,000
Average Work Week 54.9 Hours
Peak Interview Months October, February
Offers the following program training tracks: American Board of Pathology
College of American Pathologists
United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology
  • Some combined programs take 4 years of training while others only require 3 years
  • Most Pathology residency programs finalize their Rank Order Lists in February
  • While research looks good on your MyERAS Application, do not see it as mandatory. Many sources call Pathology research “icing on the cake” for applicants to have

Match Statistics

Main Residency Match and Post-Match Stats

257

IMGs Matched

163 /
601

Number of Programs/Positions

28

Post-Match SOAP Unfilled Positions

Main Residency Match

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Post-Match SOAP

Program Track
Participating Programs 20
Filled Programs 17
Positions Available 28
Filled Positions 25

Subspecialties

  • Anatomic Pathology
  • Blood Banking-Transfusion Medicine
  • Advanced Heart Failure & Transplant Cardiology
  • Chemical Pathology
  • Clinical Pathology
  • Cytopathology
  • Forensic Pathology
  • Hematology
  • Immunopathology
  • Medical Microbiology
  • Molecular Genetic Pathology
  • Neuropathology
  • Pediatric Pathology
  • Radioisotopic Pathology
  • Selective Pathology
Find The Right Pathology Residency Programs