Publication Date



Journal of American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons


INTRODUCTION: In 2018, orthopaedic trauma had the lowest match rate among orthopaedic subspecialties. The purpose of this study was to determine the importance of factors evaluated by orthopaedic trauma fellowship directors when ranking applicants after the interview.

METHODS: An electronic survey was submitted to fellowship directors and consisted of 16 factors included in a fellowship application. Respondents were asked to rate the importance of these factors for applicants they interviewed on a 1 to 5 Likert scale, with 1 being not at all important and 5 being critical.

RESULTS: Thirty-seven fellowship directors responded (63.8%). The highest-rated factor was the applicant interview (mean score 4.82), followed by the quality of letters of recommendation (4.69), personal connections made to the applicant (3.89), and potential to be leader (3.86). Fellowship directors at academic programs rated interest in an academic career (P = 0.003), research experience (P = 0.023), and exposure to well-known orthopaedic traumatologists (P = 0.003) higher than their counterparts at private institutions. Programs with more than one fellow rated potential to be a leader higher than programs with one fellow (P = 0.02).

DISCUSSION: Trainees may use this study when compiling an application to optimize their chances of matching at the program of their choice.


Fellowships and Scholarships, Orthopedics, Surveys and Questionnaires


PMID: 33961593

Included in

Orthopedics Commons



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