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Psychiatry Residency Training Program
  Applicants Department GME Office Home School of Medicine UW UWHA

Residency Policies & Procedures
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Through its Selection and Admissions procedures, the University of Washington Psychiatry Residency Program aims to select residents with strong academic records, who have the potential to become superior psychiatrists, and who show promise of making significant contributions to the field.

Residents may enter the program at the PGY-1 or the PGY-2 level. Residents entering at the PGY-1 level complete the four-year program. Those entering as PGY-2s complete the three-year program and must previously have successfully completed an ACGME-accredited PGY-1 year in Psychiatry, Medicine, Family Medicine, or Pediatrics; or an ACGME-accredited Transitional PGY-1 year; or one year of an ACGME-accredited residency in a clinical specialty requiring comprehensive and continuous patient care. A total of four years (48 months) of approved training is required to be eligible for certification by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.

Candidates for PGY-1 positions must apply through the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS). All of our PGY-1 positions are filled through the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP). PGY-2 positions are filled outside the Match on a rolling admissions basis throughout the year, until all positions are filled.

The selection process is personally supervised by the Residency Training Director on an ongoing basis. After a preliminary review by the Program Coordinator to ensure that application files are complete, the Residency Training Director makes decisions regarding invitations for interviews, on the basis of the policies described below. Final decisions regarding admission and ranking of candidates are made by the Admissions Committee.

Admissions Committee
The Admissions Committee is a subcommittee of the Resident Education Steering Committee (RESC), to which it reports. The Admissions Committee is chaired by the Residency Training Director and consists of: a) the Residency Training Director; b) five other regular faculty members of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; c) six senior residents; and d) the Program Coordinator (non-voting).

Step 1:  Response to Requests for Information

  • All physicians and medical students requesting information about the program are referred to the Psychiatry Residency Training Program recruitment website.
  • The recruitment website is intended to provide comprehensive and accurate information about the program and is regularly reviewed. Major changes in the content of the website require approval of the RESC.
  • Further specific information about the program is furnished to candidates with special interests or circumstances by the Program Coordinator or Program Director upon request.

Step 2:  Selecting Candidates for Interviews

  • Applications are reviewed by the Program Coordinator and Program Director for: a) completeness; b) licensing and/or USMLE information; c) special experiences and training (e.g. research, special rotations/externships, community service, work experiences); d) strong grades and/or letters of recommendation. Applications from physicians and medical students trained outside the United States are also reviewed for: a) ECFMG certification; b) VISA or citizenship status; c) the quality of the training completed; and d) command of the English language. If the review indicates that the applicant is competitive, he or she becomes part of the pool of candidates for selection for interviews.
  • Decisions to invite candidates for an interview day are made by the Residency Training Director on the basis of academic performance (e.g. grades, prior training, USMLE scores), interpersonal skills (e.g. as evidenced in letters of recommendation), promise for Psychiatry (e.g. as demonstrated in performance on Psychiatry rotations, in letters of recommendation, in the personal statement, and through relevant extracurricular activities), special experiences (e.g. research, leadership activities, community service), and other factors representing a good "match" with our program (e.g. interest in practicing within the WWAMI region, in underserved populations, in pursuing an academic career, etc.). The program seeks to recruit a diverse and talented group of residents with a variety of interests and with the potential to be clinical, community, and research leaders in our field.
  • If an applicant has been told that his or her application does not appear to be competitive but nevertheless requests to be interviewed, this request will be granted.
Step 3:  Interviews
  • Each applicant is interviewed by at least three faculty members and one resident.
  • Each interviewer rates the applicant in terms of: a) general acceptability and b) academic, clinical, and psychological potential, and submits written comments to the Residency Training Office.
Step 4:  Admission/Ranking
  • All candidates who have been interviewed are presented to the Admissions Committee. For each applicant, the application package and interview reports are reviewed in depth and presented to the whole Committee by two committee members. The whole Committee then reviews the application and interview reports and discusses the candidate.
  • For PGY-2 applicants, the Committee then votes to offer the candidate a position, to wait to review other applications before making a final decision, or not to offer the candidate a position. PGY-2 positions are filled on a rolling admissions basis until all spots are filled. At that time, all remaining PGY-2 candidates are informed that all of the positions have been filled.
  • For PGY-1 candidates, the Committee ranks each applicant. The Committee decides which applicants will be listed on the program's NRMP Rank list and in which order. Special consideration is given to target exceptional candidates interested in research, in Child Psychiatry, or in public/community psychiatry for recruitment. The program does not offer positions and does not make any binding commitments to PGY-1 candidates before the results of the Match are known.
  • During the selection process, the Admissions Committee can request the Residency Training Office to obtain additional information about a candidate or to invite a candidate for a second series of interviews before coming to a decision about offering the candidate a position or before ranking them for the Match.

(Revised August 2, 2002)

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Psychiatry Residency Training Program
1959 NE Pacific Street, Box 356560
Seattle, WA 98195-6560