U.S. Clinical Experience / Research

This section focuses on United States Clinical Experience (USCE) tips. There are also articles on all things related to research.

As an IMG, getting clinical experience in the U.S. medical system can help you obtain a residency position. However, you should know that opinions about what constitutes adequate USCE varies widely among different residency programs. Some of the articles below highlight this fact.

You should become familiar with the various options for obtaining USCE and figure out the option that suits your situation. Options include medical student rotations in the US, observerships or externships as an IMG or employment in a related medical field. There is also the option of foregoing USCE.

Research experience can be helpful for IMGs, although this is certainly not a requirement for being competitive for residency positions.



Why USCE is important for IMGs

> Is USCE essential for IMGs?

> Is research experience important for IMGs?

A framework for thinking about US Clinical Experience

Medical Student Elective Rotations for International Students

> Observerships and externships

> All about observerships

> An in-depth look at externships for IMGs

> Special USCE programs for IMGs

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8 Replies to “U.S. Clinical Experience / Research”

  1. rekha12345

    Hi to all… I am an IMG graduated 1 year ago having greencard but didn’t write any USMLE exam? Am I still eligible to apply for USCE? If it is possible then please tell how to do it?? I am in tension..

    • Shinji Post author

      There is no uniform standard for USCE applications for international doctors who have already graduated from medical school. You can try to arrange your own USCE (particularly if you have physician contacts), or you could consider going with a company that links you to USCE. Please do thorough research if you choose to use a company. Also, you should become very familiar about how helpful USCE may or may not be for you. I have written many articles on this subject that could be helpful for you.

  2. darshdesai

    I’m from India currently in final year and want to do an externship in united states. But I haven’t given my step 1 yet. So I want to know which universities have externship program which doesn’t require step 1 usmle score.

  3. kn

    Hi , can someone please help me . I want to know if there is any chance to be accepted to do an Usce (elective or observeship?) For international undergraduate ( not my final year ) student? I really appreciate this amazing site with all this amazing information

  4. niyazi kilic

    I am 2008 grad ob/gyn speacilist in my own country. i am currently working as ob/gyn. i got US permanent residency. i decide move to USA. i start study USMLE and i passed step 1 with 250 score. i am about enter second exam (ck). Previously i make 2 moths observership in USA a university. The doctor whom i was shadowing anymore working in private clinic.

    What is your suggestion for me to increase my chance to be matched? Research or observership

    • Shinji Post author

      Hello, are you applying for ob/gyn training in the US also? If you are, your clinical experience as a specialist will probably be one of most compelling aspects of your overall application. If your observership was recent and you can get a good letter from it, then I don’t know if additional USCE would help you much. Your Step 1 score is excellent and I’d focus on getting a good Step 2 CK score and passing the CS the first time. Really, the question about research vs observership depends on the overall strengths and weaknesses of your application packet and the type of programs you’re applying to.

  5. Raj

    Hi how do you find research position on b1 visa ? Are you aware of any places that recruits imgs for research volunteering ??


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