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Chief Resident Message | Salary & Benefits | Our Residents | Research | How to Apply

Residency Application Process

Thank you for your interest in our Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Residency Program at UC Irvine.

To apply, complete and submit your application through the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) ›

We do not accept hard copy applications or supporting documents sent via US Postal Service or email.

Our program requires the completion of a preliminary/transitional year in an ACGME, AOA, RCPSC or CFPC accredited program, or in residency programs with ACGME-I Advanced Specialty Accreditation prior to the start of our residency program.

International medical student graduates

The PM&R residency program accepts applications from international medical student graduates. Certification by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) is required if the applicant graduated from a foreign medical school. To obtain further information regarding ECFMG Certification, please refer to their website at

An ECFMG sponsored J-1 visa is required for medical students who are not a US citizen. 

Required documents

All residency applications must include the following documents to be considered for an interview:

  • ERAS Application
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Personal statement, which allows the residency committee to get to know you and your attributes which make you a good fit for PM&R 
  • Dean’s letter
  • Medical school transcript
  • Three letters of recommendation. At least one letter should be from a PM&R supervisor or advisor
  • USMLE: Step 1, Step 2 CK  (required for allopathic applicants)
  • COMLEX: Level 1, Level 2 CE (required for osteopathic applicants)
  • Photo



For the upcoming 2024-2025 interview season, interviews will be scheduled from late November 2024 through late January 2025. The deadline to submit your completed ERAS application and supporting documentation (including Step 2/Level 2 score) is October 31, 2024. If you have special circumstances that prevent you from meeting this deadline, please feel free to reach out to our program with questions or concerns.

All interviews will be conducted virtually this year, as determined by the University of California. There will be a Zoom based social activity hosted by our residents on the evening before the interviews. On the day of your interview there will be multiple rounds of interviews during which time you will have the opportunity to meet our faculty.

UCI School of Medicine Statement on the 2023-2024 ACGME-accredited Residency and Fellowship interview season

The UC Schools of Medicine have reached consensus agreement regarding the residency and fellowship interview season for the academic year 2023-2024: All interviews must be held remotely, even if the candidate lives locally. This policy is in alignment with guidance provided by the Coalition for Physician Accountability, which is composed of key national medical educational stakeholders, such as the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), LCME, AAMC, AMA, and the ACGME.


All applicants who match are required to take and pass the following USMLE and/or COMLEX exams before matriculation into the PM&R residency program: 

  • MDs: USMLE Step 1, Step 2 CK, and Step 3
  • DOs: COMLEX Level 1, Level 2 CE, and Level 3

We look forward to receiving your application. If you have any questions, please contact our residency program coordinator, Susan Downing

Frequently Asked Questions

What are your USMLE Step 1 and USMLE Step 2 CK minimum score requirements? Is there an attempt limit for either exam? »

We do not have a minimum score requirement, each application is reviewed with personal circumstances noted if mentioned in personal statement, and significant improvements from step/level to step/level are taken into account.

By the time of application, do you need us to be fully ECFMG certified? »

Confirmation of ECFMG certification is required prior to submission of our rank order list.

Do you have a program application deadline? If yes, what is the cut-off date? »

Our application deadline is October 31, 2024.

Do you have a time since graduation cut-off? If yes, how many years? »


Is US clinical experience required? If yes, how much, and what type? »
No. “All prerequisite post-graduate clinical education required for initial entry or transfer into ACGME-accredited residency programs must be completed in ACGME-accredited residency programs, AOA approved residency programs, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC)-accredited or College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC)-accredited residency programs located in Canada, or in residency programs with ACGME International (ACGME-I) Advanced Specialty Accreditation.”
Do you sponsor the H1 visa? »

No, the university does not sponsor H-1 visas.

Do you accept the ECFMG-sponsored J1 visa? »
Yes, the university accepts ECFMG issued J-1 visas.
Do you have any specific requirements for Letters of Recommendation? »

We recommend that at least one of your letters be from a physiatrist. However, exceptions may be made considering recent difficulties in obtaining away rotations during the COVID pandemic.

Do you have any International Medical Graduates? If yes, what is the number/percentage of International Medical Graduates in your program? If no, will you consider accepting applications from International Medical Graduates? »

International medical graduates are evaluated using the same process as US graduates and we have accepted them in the past.

For any additional questions related to the UC Irvine PM&R residency program and clinical experience, please contact


Website Disclaimer

Information on this website is current as of October 2023, but due to the COVID-19 situation some of this information is subject to change. UCI PM&R will abide by all University, ACGME, ABPMR, and Medical Board of California policies and recommendations as they change in real-time.