Match Code of Conduct for Medical Schools

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The National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) ensures high professional standards in the conduct of its Matching Program and expects all Match participants to conduct their affairs in an ethical and professionally responsible manner.  To that end, this Code of Conduct should serve as a guide for medical school officials, faculty, and staff participating in or advising as part of a Match. 


To promote the highest ethical and professional standards, medical school officials, staff, and faculty (“medical schools”) participating in or advising as part of a Match must:

  • Ensure timely submission of information regarding applicant eligibility for Match Participation
    Medical schools play a critical role in ensuring programs match to applicants who are able to begin training on the date specified in the appointment contact.  To that end, medical schools must
    • verify by the Rank Order List Certification Deadline the presumed graduation status of sponsored applicants (US senior students) and that current and former students are eligible to enter graduate medical education on July 1 in the year of the Match.
    • withdraw by the Rank Order List Certification Deadline those applicants who are ineligible for Match participation, including applicants who accept appointments through the military process.
    • promptly notify the NRMP post-Match of any applicant who becomes ineligible for GME after the Match has concluded.

  • Ensure submission of complete, timely and accurate information regarding applicant medical school performance
    It is critical that applicants and programs have full access to complete, timely, and accurate information about each other in order to make sound and informed decisions about eligibility and ranking.  Medical schools must provide complete, timely, and accurate information about applicant performance on any materials provided to training programs and ensure programs are made aware of  any substantive changes in an applicant’s eligibility or graduation status. Medical school officials and advisors have the right to expect programs to be transparent in their application vetting processes (e.g., test scores, research experiences, educational performance metrics) so they can advise applicants on how best to direct their applications.

  • Respect an applicant’s right to privacy and confidentiality
    Applicants have the right at all times to keep their rank order lists and SOAP preferences confidential and not to share them with any other individual or entity.  Medical schools cannot require an applicant to reveal their rank order list or SOAP preferences. Applicants may choose to voluntarily share their ranking or SOAP preferences, and school representatives can offer to review ranking or SOAP preferences to support applicants in the matching process.

  • Refrain from inappropriate Match Week communication
    The Match provides a uniform schedule for all participants and strives to ensure parity of experience. The NRMP expects medical schools to support that endeavor by
    • sharing the List of Unfilled Programs only with those applicants who registered for the Match and are eligible to review it
    • refraining from contacting unfilled programs on behalf of unmatched applicants outside the mandated SOAP process (i.e., applicants use ERAS to apply to programs; programs initiate first contact with applicants or applicants’ advisors after receiving application through ERAS)

  • Respect the binding nature of the match commitment
    The binding commitment is the cornerstone of the matching process; accordingly, medical schools and their sponsored graduate medical education programs must not offer any training opportunity to any applicant who has been barred from accepting or starting the position because of a concurrent year Match commitment, a denied waiver request, or a confirmed violation of the Match Agreement.

Ethical and professional communication between applicants, program directors and staff, and medical school officials, faculty and staff is essential to maintaining a fair and equitable process throughout the transition to residency.  Match participants that fail to comply with their respective Code of Conduct or the terms of the applicable Match Participation Agreement may be subjected to a violation investigation as described in the Policies and Procedures for Reporting, Investigation, and Disposition of Violations of NRMP Agreements.