A letter from our Residency Program Director
A radiology residency is one of the more competitive residencies among the specialties. That being the case, the realistic medical student should have a solid record of academic accomplishment. Being an "academic superstar" is not a requirement for our program, but we do receive a very large number of applications from very talented and qualified candidates. So the stronger your record, the better your chance of obtaining a spot in our program. The chairman or residency director of the radiology department at your medical school should be able to advise you and give you a fair assessment of how competitive you will be as a candidate for a residency slot in radiology.
In addition to academic talent and performance demonstrated by board scores and transcripts, a competitive candidate should present a transcript that reveals experience in the clinical areas where radiology plays a major role. As you decide about how to structure your elective time in medical school, it should be obvious that some arenas of medicine require very little imaging while others are "image intense". Transcripts that reveal experiences in the surgical specialties cast a favorable impression. The medical services of neurology, pulmonology, cardiology and pediatrics will expose you to areas of medicine where imaging is an integral part of diagnosis and management. ICU and emergency department experiences are also opportunities to see imaging and its role in patient care. If you are interested in radiology as a career, it is important to get a good foundation in clinical medicine and not so important in medical school to try to pack in radiology electives. With a good foundation in clinical medicine and surgery, when you learn about radiology later in your career, you'll have an excellent understanding of how imaging interpretations and procedures affect patient management. You can then talk intelligently and knowledgeably with referring physicians about their clinical cases.
Our department is aggressively pursuing research in medical imaging and if you have experiences in medical imaging research or are strongly interested in research in medical imaging, we would invite your application. Our research infrastructure is substantial and includes a research MRI unit, as well as opportunities for research on the PET scanner. Our state-of-the-art Radiology Research Laboratory is providing opportunities to advance our knowledge of new interventional procedures. Our department has established a division of medical informatics. If your interests are in that area, you may strongly wish to consider our program.
Another unique aspect to the IU Department of Radiology is its substantial investment in radiology education, particularly for medical students and residents. We have been working diligently for the past several years to create a Division of Education for the purpose of studying how best to teach radiology and other medical information using all available technologies, providing continuing education to radiologists, technologists, and administrators by working hand-in-hand with industry, and to develop new technologies. We have many faculty who are producing computer-based interactive educational materials and we already have hundreds of teaching files available for medical students and radiologists available through this website.
Darel E. Heitkamp, M.D.
Residency Program Director
Strengths of Our Program
You should be considering numerous radiology residency programs. As you assess them, each will have unique advantages and strengths that may best suit your career plans. When considering your future, it is important to find a program that is compatible with your personality and goals. Here are some of the strengths that we believe our program has to offer a candidate.
Residents rotate through five hospitals during the course of their training. Indiana University Health represents one of the busiest hospital systems in the nation. It consists of Methodist Hospital, University Hospital, and Riley Hospital for Children, as well as a number of clinics throughout the community. Indiana University Health's position within the state health care market is strong and growing. In addition to the IUH Hospitals, we also serve Wishard Memorial Hospital and the Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center on our campus. Indiana University is the largest medical school in the United States, with over 280 students in each entering class. As the only medical school in the state, we offer an extraordinary depth and variety of case material.
Faculty to Resident Ratio
The Radiology Residency Program draws on the contributions of more than 120 faculty members (M.D. and non-M.D.). With such a large number of faculty, we can provide each resident with one-on-one education and experiences in each radiology sub-specialty. Although the patient care and training facilities are vast, residents work as members of small teams.
Volume of Studies
Staff and residents interpret over 1,000,000 imaging studies per year. In addition to sheer volume, the program stands out for the breadth of its imaging services. For example, the program at Indiana University is one of a few radiology programs in the country interpreting over 10,000 obstetrical and gynecologic ultrasound examinations each year.
State-of-the-Art Equipment in a Variety of Settings
The department's imaging equipment is extensive and state-of-the-art. Experiences with a variety of hardware will provide a thorough knowledge of current imaging modalities and machines. This is an advantage when graduates of the program look for jobs. The program enables residents to gain experience in a number of different environments: a university hospital, community hospitals, a children's hospital, a veteran's hospital (on campus), two Level I trauma centers, and outpatient clinics. This provides an opportunity to see a wide variety of pathology and to make well-informed career choices.
Commitment to Education
The size of both our faculty and our fellowship training programs is increasing. The department has two endowed chairs in education, as well as a faculty member with an appointment in medical education. More detailed information about our commitment to education, specifically our didactic curriculum, is available on our Education page.
Fellowship and Research Opportunities
We are able to provide a comprehensive fellowship program. We offer fellowships in several areas, and although these fellowships are open to all graduates of radiology residencies, graduates of IU Department of Radiology have an "inside track" in arranging a fellowship with us in virtually any sub-specialty.
The department encourages all residents to gain research experience. We can provide opportunities to work with successful faculty researchers, and we pledge to fund worthy projects. We also encourage researchers in the residency program by permitting them additional time away from clinical duties to present their work at recognized professional meetings and conferences.
Each resident is given the opportunity to have exposure to abundant pathology and imaging modalities with the wide variety of hospital and clinical settings. Given the many recent and upcoming changes for radiology residencies nationwide due to the new ABR board exam format and changes in the ACGME Radiology Residency Program Requirements, we have implemented schedule changes in advance to ensure the success of our residents and provide seamless transition into the new era of radiology resident education. See a sample of our residency schedule by clicking on the Curriculum tab (above).
We pride ourselves on being extremely friendly and responsive. Our residents are provided great freedom in self-governance and organization. Residents are able to arrange call schedules, vacation time-off and meeting time with great flexibility.
From informal gatherings to a summer softball league to social events planned by our social chair, our residents and departmental employees enjoy getting to know each other and having fun outside of work!
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2011 - 2012 Application Timeline
ERAS Post-office opens: September 1, 2011
Application deadline: November 1, 2011
Interview notification: Begins late October
Interview dates: select Tuesdays and Fridays from November through mid January
Rank order list certification deadline (NRMP): February 22, 2012
Match day: March 16, 2012
For additional information, please see the NRMP web page.
Frequently Asked Questions
This section includes answers to questions that we commonly receive from applicants to our program. If you have a question and it's not answered here, you can e-mail our educational coordinator, Lois Shuman, and we will try our best to be responsive.
Q1. How many positions are available?
Answer: We have 15 advanced (PG-2) positions available each year.
Q2. How do I apply? Does the Department accept the NRMP Universal Application?
Answer: We will ONLY review applications received through ERAS.
Q3. Does the program have any categorical (PG-1) positions?
Answer: We offer three Categorical Positions that will incorporate an internal medicine internship, followed by Radiology at the PGY2 level the next year. The applicant applies to only one program and can decide on whether he/she prefers the Categorical or Advanced program at the time of ranking. The applicant can put one or both programs on their rank list.
Q4. Are there internships near by?
Answer: We recommend that our residents take Transitional or Surgery internships. There are two excellent transitional internships in Indianapolis; the Indiana University program and the St. Vincent Hospital program. There is also a transitional internship program at Ball Memorial Hospital in Muncie, Indiana (about 50 miles northeast of Indianapolis). We have a Surgery internship at Indiana University, as well as Internal Medicine internships at IU and St. Vincent Hospital.
Q5. What minimum scores will your department accept?
Answer: We do not use a cut off for applications. Instead, we prefer to review the entire application.
Q6. How many letters of recommendation does your program require?
Answer: We ask for 3 letters of recommendation.
Q7. What is your application deadline?
Answer: All application material must be received, through ERAS, by November 1, 2011.
Q8. Do you accept international graduates into your program?
Answer: The last IMG who trained in radiology at Indiana University completed their training in July 2004.
Q9. As a resident, do you actually know all of your fellow residents?
Answer: Yes! On individual rotations, we work closely with our colleagues in the smaller settings, we attend daily noon conferences together, AND we have social events outside of work to promote camaraderie.