Selection Process

Our selection committee begins reviewing applications in September. An invitation to interview is extended only after we have received a complete application and eligibility criteria are met (listed below). We extend interview invitations via email to approximately 40 applicants.

Residents participating in a WISH lab course


Interview Process

We hold three interview sessions, each scheduled over a Friday and Saturday sometime between October and January.  On Friday applicants will enjoy a lunch session hosted by the Chairman and available residents that includes an introduction to Seattle and the residency program.  After lunch, there will be a guided city tour followed by an evening dinner hosted by the residents.  Saturday begins early with breakfast and individual interviews. Each candidate can expect a series of short, individual interviews with a variety of clinical and research faculty from our department. The day ends in the early afternoon after an informal lunch with residents and faculty.

Each interviewer rates the applicants on a variety of criteria, including medical school performance, personal attributes, exposure to the field, and research and clinical goals and interests. Interviewers will use both the application materials and their interactions with the applicants to assign ratings  and make summary comments.

Development of the Rank List

All members of the residency interview committee will review each application and the interview rating sheets. Criteria that may be considered include medical school performance, letters of recommendation, interview performance, research interest, career goals, and input from residents or other members of the staff who have met the applicants.

A meeting of the residency interview committee, including both current residents and clinical/research faculty is held in February to develop a consensus of rank order. The Program Director and Chairman may review and revise the final list if needed.

Eligibility Requirements

Medical students applying to the UW Department of Neurological Surgery residency program must have passed USMLE Step 2 CK and CS and graduated from medical school.

Criteria for interview eligibility:

  • Exceptional performance in all basic science courses

  • Exceptional performance in all required clerkships

  • Exceptional USMLE Step 1 score

  • Exceptional letters of recommendation

Applicants with unusual strengths who do not meet all the above criteria will be considered on an individual basis.

International Applicants

The Department of Neurological Surgery Residency Program requires that all international medical graduates must:

  • Be certified by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG).

  • Have taken and passed the USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 exams.

The residency program will consider sponsorship for H-1B visas for international applicants and F-1 OPT applicants on an individual basis.

Positions Outside the Match

In the case of vacancies, physicians may be interviewed at any time. The residency training director will decide whether to offer a position, or whether further review by the whole residency training committee is indicated after the interview. Any open positions the program is looking to fill will be listed on the website.