How the NRMP Process Works
Because it provides a uniform date for decisions about residency selection for both applicants and programs, the NRMP Matches eliminate the pressure that might otherwise fall upon applicants and programs to make decisions before all of their options are known. The Match Participation Agreement outlines the guidelines and procedures developed to accomplish this objective and should be reviewed carefully.
The NRMP can best accomplish its goals when every program involved in the selection of applicants participates fully in The Match. The NRMP is a matching service and provides the mechanism for matching applicants to programs according to the preferences expressed by both parties on their individualized rank order lists.
There are three steps in a match: registration, ranking, and results. The entire match process is conducted on the web through the NRMP's secure, web-based Registration, Ranking and ResultsSM (R3SM) system.
Each Match has a separate schedule. To learn when registration begins, go to the Schedule of Dates for all NRMP Matches. To register for any of the Matches offered by the NRMP, an applicant must go to www.nrmp.org and click on the Register/Login button. Beneath the login information will appear "Applicant Registration ". The process is three parts:
Applicants and programs submit their rank order lists directly on the NRMP web site. It is unlikely that a program will rank an applicant if the program did not grant an interview. Applicants submit, in the applicant's order of preference, a list of the programs where they have interviewed. Each program also submits a list of applicants in its order of preference. Those lists are then compared against each other, incorporating a computerized matching algorithm program.
Since January 1998, a new applicant proposing algorithm has been used in all NRMP Matches. This algorithm assumes that offers made to applicants for by various programs are determined by the applicants' preferred order lists (rank order lists). Applicants match into the programs listed highest on their lists that also ranked the applicant and had not filled all of available positions with applicants the program preferred as determined by the program's rank order list.
There is one cardinal rule for both programs and applicants: neither must ask the other prior to The Match to make a commitment as to how each will be ranked. Each party may express a high level of interest in the other; however, references to how each will rank the other should be avoided and should definitely not be solicited. Neither programs nor applicants should consider these comments about interest as commitments. Candor and honesty are important for both programs and applicants.
Results will be posted on Match Day at 1:00 p.m. eastern time on the NRMP Web site or can be obtained by contacting the NRMP office. Information includes: