Included in this post is a table summarizing the USMLE Step 2 averages for each specialty in the 2011 Residency Match. The information was reported by specialty in the NRMP Charting Outcomes in the Match 2011.
Step 2 CK scores averages were highest in Dermatology and Otolaryngology, both in the 250s, followed closely by Plastic Surgery with an average of 249. Not far behind fell Diagnostic Radiology, Radiation Oncology, and then Med/Peds. Surprisingly, Neurosurgery was not among the highest Step 2 CK averages in the match, nor was it in the 2009 match (average = 237). There are several other factors that may play into choosing Neurosurgery applicants, such as involvement in research, MD/PhD track, and AOA status, which bear a closer look.
Independent applicant averages often appear lower than U.S. Senior applicant averages, but the number of matches is lower and the pool includes graduates and re-applicants that have taken time to do research, pursue degrees, and complete graduate training, in order to better prepare them for residency positions.
How does this affect me?
If you would like to discuss what makes an applicant competitive in a particular specialty, contact us to review all the factors that are researched by specialty and reported by the NRMP in their several publications, along with reports from research, residents, and program directors.
Carefully look over the NRMP Charting Outcomes in the Match 2011 and Results of the 2012 Program Directors Survey for information on how to shape your academic, research, and leadership profile to increase your chances for matching in the specialty of your choice. It is also useful to help you determine if your profile is strong enough to match in the specialty of your choice or if you are not as solid of an applicant as you hoped and need a backup plan.
Remember that these are averages and that several students that received interviews and matched scored below the Step 2 scores reported in the chart provided. It is very important to look at the NRMP Charting Outcomes in the Match 2011 in your specialty of interest and study the range of scores to determine how your score impacts your residency application.
Step 2 Averages for the NRMP 2011 Match
|U.S Seniors||Independent Applicants|
|Obstetrics & Gynecology||233||210||223||212|
|Physical Med & Rehab||224||200||213||205|
NRMP publication, Charting Outcomes in the Match, 2011