The process of obtaining a residency can be a very frustrating one. Some applicants even consider that the outcome of such process will determine the course of their future lives. Such pressure can make that the path to your dreamed residency be a very unpleasant one, and even led you to do things that can be detrimental in getting your residency.

The best way to lessen such anxiety is to be informed. If you know the process and procedures, then you will be at a better position to make a determined decision, meet all deadlines, and avoid mistakes that in some situations can harm your chances.

But where are the sources of information? This question has an encouraging answer. they are everywhere!!! The web is flooded with information ranging from how to ace your USMLE steps to how to obtain the residency of your dreams. The source of information to start with should be the bulletins from USMLE and, if you are an IMG, from the ECFMG (check glossary). Both are updated every year, free to download at their respective websites (www.usmle.org, www.ecfmg.org ), and contain the basics on how to engage the application and test taking of the USMLE steps and ECFMG certification. Forums provide applicant-to-applicant support and guidance which can become a very useful tool; a very good forum I highly recommend is www.prep4usmle.com. And of course, finally, you will need the ultimate source of information: USMLEMATCH.

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