The predictive value of subjective and objective application variables on the global rating of applicants to a general surgery residency program

Nicholas Molacek, Sarah Bashaw, James Dove, Samantha Lane, Marie Hunsinger, Joseph Blansfield, Mohsen Shabahang



One of the most critical aspects of a residency program is the recruitment and selection of candidates that will be the best fit for the program and will enhance the future growth and development of the program. The purpose of this study is to determine if the objective and subjective aspects of a candidate’s application have significant impact on the candidate’s overall global rating scale (GRS) which is a scoring system developed and utilized by our medium sized general surgery residency program to rate individual candidates based on their overall application.



This is a retrospective cohort study looking at the ERAS applications of 438 candidates to a medium sized, rural general surgery program. The GRS is a scale from 1 to 10 which is a composite score of multiple variables which are rated by a group of 10-18 faculty reviewers.



It was noted that having been previously accepted to another residency training program had a deleterious effect on the candidate’s GRS. Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) membership, honors in a clinical rotation, USMLE Step II Score, letters of recommendation, personal statement, and volunteer work were all found to statistically affect the GRS.



It was found that both objective and subjective factors had a statistically significant affect on a candidate’s GRS. Interestingly, the difference between USMLE Step I and Step II scores, which was found to be significant in our original study, was no longer found to be significant in this study. The single most significant factor of a candidates overall GRS was the failure of a basic science course.


application; residency; recruitment

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