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  1. #1
    stormshadow is offline Newbie 510 points
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    What are Electives?

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    I am a US citizen in KMC Manipal(India0 doing my third year. I don't know too much about the American Medical School System since I went straight out of Highschool(big mistake). Anyways I wanted to know what exactly are electives? Are they just to help International Medical students get some exposure to an American Hospital or do they really help in landing a good residency in the USA. Also is there a way to gain experience at an American Hospital after graduating but before starting a residency. The college that I am in only allows students to do 1 month of electives outside India during fourth year, so is it really worth it?

  2. #2
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    AUCMD2006 is offline Ultimate Member 6129 points
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    electives are your 4th year of med school. usually subspecialties or areas you are interested in for residency to get a real "taste". you are basically treated as a 1st year resident so you get a good idea of what its really like (during 3rd year you are focused on learning how to write a note, take histories, etc)

    would a 4 week elective help you getting a residency? probably not much since you would be learning an entire system by learing how to write, present cases, the drugs, treatment plans etc.. so it would be difficult to impress an attending enough to get an recommendation because you will seem clueless for a few weeks (the img's i've seen usually take 2-3 weeks to get in rythm). also any programs that require US clinical experience usually want more than 4 weeks so it will not help there either.

    what you could do is after graduation there get a few observerships in the US. an observership is a rotation but you aren't allowed to have direct patient contact (do procedures). what it will do is get you used to the system and after you learn the set up you can get a few letters of recommendation to add to your application. if you get the first aid CSA book there is a list in the back of hospitals that allow observerships

    good luck
    getaresidency .com

  3. #3
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    Natacha is offline Junior Member 511 points
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    Hi I am also an IMG and from my understanding, the clinical electives is something that can be done with in a 2-3months period and does have a great impact on the residency application process. Also, from doing a clinical elective you can obtain a LOR (letter of recommendation) that can further more help to impress the faculty members and the program you are interested in. Try to do it at the hospital that you plan on applying to this way you can gain some kind of relationship with the staff or at least be seen by them.
    Now you can also do a research elective (which is where take classes in the field that you are interested). In this you do not get to do any type of procedures or come into contact with patients.
    If you are only going to do one of them its best to do the clinical elective.
    Hope this helps! Good luck.
    Last edited by Natacha; 04-15-2006 at 09:40 PM.
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  4. #4
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    AUCMD2006 is offline Ultimate Member 6129 points
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    electiceves can be done for any amount of time, 2 weeks-months. thsi person only has a month in which to try and impress staff. coming from a different hospital system that is not likely in that short amount of time. you guys (students doing their first rotation in the US in 4th year) have a steep learning curve bc you are expected to perform at a level of a US 4th year with no experience. we have it a bit easier b/c the expectation is much lower in our third year bc attendings know we know nothing yet. that is why i said likelyhood of impressing someone in 4 weeks is low and i suggested doing two observerships. one to get used to the system, and one to get the letters and impress a program they are interested in.

    you don't need US experience to get a residency but IMHO it would help to have the letter of recommendation as well as knowing the system before starting the residency and having to learn it then....
    getaresidency .com

  5. #5
    stormshadow is offline Newbie 510 points
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    thanks

    Thanks you guys have been pretty helpful. My college is offering a 3 month course on Bioinformatics for Medical and Allied Health Science students. DO you think this is will be helpful in future?

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