Do Interviews Really Matter in Generating Programs and Applicants' Rank Lists for the Match?

Christopher Di Felice, Pallavi Sharma, David A. Folt, Rodney J. Folz, Frank Jacono, Shine Raju, Mohammad A. Shatat, Joanne McKell, Anna May, Maroun Matta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: A paucity of data exists on the role of the interview day in programs and applicants' final rank list. The objective of our study was to investigate the impact interview day has on our programs and our interviewees' final rank list.

METHODS: For the 2020 appointment year, our program used an Electronic Residency Application System Application Scoring Tool and Interview Scoring Tool to generate the preliminary rank list for our pulmonary and critical care fellowship applicants. The final rank list was decided after interviewers' discussion during the program's rank list meeting. We aimed to correlate the preliminary and final lists. We also surveyed applicants on the importance of interview day in generating their rank list.

RESULTS: The final and the preliminary rank lists were strongly correlated (r s(47) = 0.87, P < 0.001). There was a stronger correlation between the final rank and the rank based on the application score (r s(47) = 0.84, P < 0.001) than the rank based on the interview score (r s(47) = 0.64, P < 0.001). For the postinterview survey, 48 applicants were surveyed-20 replied with a response rate of 42% and 18 respondents (90%) rated the interview experience as important or very important in their rank list decisions.

CONCLUSIONS: The programs rank list correlated more with the candidates' written application than their interview day performance; however, interview experience greatly influenced the applicants' rank lists. In the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic, in which all interviews are virtual, programs should make diligent efforts to construct virtual interview days, given their importance to applicants in generating their final rank list for the match.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)239-243
Number of pages5
JournalSouthern Medical Journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2022


  • ERAS application
  • interview
  • match
  • rank list
  • score

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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