International Medical Students

Minimum USMLE Score Requirements

International Medical Graduates (IMGs) may be at a disadvantage in competing for Pediatric residencies in the U.S., partly because of large variation in the formal training and clinical experiences offered by foreign medical schools, when compared to the relatively uniform curriculum and clinical requirements offered by U.S. medical schools.

We have no minimum USMLE score requirements.

Prior U.S. Clinical Experience

Since clinical and cultural preparedness are also keys to success here, we require prior clinical experience in the United States. We expect letters of recommendation from these experiences as well, which will further strengthen an IMG applicant's documentation of overall readiness to begin residency training in the U.S.


Our program does NOT sponsor visas of any kind for IMGs. The Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) will sponsor a J-1 visa for candidates.

A clinical J-1 visa is required for admission to UCSF Health residency and fellowship training programs. The visa can only be sponsored by ECFMG, which requires passage of USMLE Steps 1 and 2. Please refer to Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates website.

Application Process

To apply, please complete the following steps.

Step1: Valid Certificates & Licenses

You must hold a current, valid certificate from the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG). This is mandatory for appointment at this Institution as well as for medical licensure in the State of California. If you do not yet have this certificate, you will need to contact the ECFMG office directly and arrange to take the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE). After you pass the examination, including the English test, you will be granted an ECFMG certificate.

Reference: Updated 2022 Changes to the CA Med Board Postgraduate Training and Licensing Requirements.

A Postgraduate Training License (PTL) is issued to an individual who has graduated from an approved medical school, passed all required examinations, has not completed 36 months of Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) postgraduate training, and is enrolled in an approved California residency program.

Effective January 1, 2022, medical school graduates who graduated from a foreign/international medical school and are enrolling in a California ACGME-accredited PGT program will still be required to obtain a postgraduate training license (PTL) within 180 days of their enrollment. In addition, PTLs may be issued up to 15 months (for U.S. and Canadian medical school graduates) or 27 months (for international medical school graduates) to allow PTL holders to continue training in their California PGT program while transitioning to a P&S license. The Board is authorized to extend these timeframes, within its discretion, to allow the PTL holder to receive the PGT credit required for licensure.

In order to be eligible for a full, CA medical license, foreign medical graduates must (1) remain on a PTL for 24 months of ACGME accredited training/have completed 24 months of ACGME accredited training AND (2) they must ensure that their medical school is listed on the Foundation for Advancement of International Medical Education and Research (FAIMER) World Directory of Medical Schools joint directory, or the World Directory of Medical Schools or their medical school must be approved by the CA Medical Board.


Step 2: Application Submission

ALL APPLICATION MATERIALS MUST BE SUBMITTED VIA ERAS (Electronic Residency Application Service), which is provided to you through ECFMG.

NOTE: The basic components of your application (the Common Application Form, transcript, personal statement, USMLE scores, at least 2 letters of recommendation and the Medical Student Performance Evaluation [MSPE—formerly Dean's Letter]) MUST BE RECEIVED at UCSF by November 15.

All tracks within our residency are selected via ERAS—ACGME ID # 3200521040.





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Advancing Health Equity


Step 3: Application Checklist

If you are eligible to submit an application to UCSF, please use the following checklist to ensure that your application is complete. All items must be in English or have an official translation attached.

  1. ECFMG certification (you must have passed both the medical and English sections, and hold a valid, current ECFMG certificate).

  2. ERAS Application, and should include the following:
    • Three letters of recommendation: at least two of these letters must be from faculty at academic institutions in the United States who have worked with you in a clinical setting.

    • Medical School transcripts.

  3. A copy of your current visa status or green card.

IMPORTANT: As noted, an application WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED unless it complies with all of the above. Incomplete application packets will not be considered.

The Department of Pediatrics, following a review of completed applications, will request interviews of selected candidates.

  • Interviews will be scheduled only AFTER our selection committee reviews applications.

  • We will send interview invitations to you by email, so be sure to indicate your preferred and accurate email address on your ERAS application.

Application Questions | Contact Information

UCSF Pediatric Residency
Box 0110
San Francisco, CA 94158
Email: [email protected] | Tel: 415-476-3565

Relevant Resources

California Medical Board (CMB)
1426 Howe Ave., Suite #54
Sacramento, CA 95825-3236
Tel: 916-263-2382

National Resident Match Program (NRMP)
2450 "N" St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20037-1127
Tel: 202-828-0566

Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG)
3624 Market St., 4th Fl.
Philadelphia, PA 19104-2685
Tel: 215-386-5900

Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS)