Types of Programs Available in the Match

Ever wonder what's the difference between a preliminary and categorical residency?  Find out now... Here's an explanation of the types of residency program types that are available in the match!

Your goal is to get complete training in the specialty of your choice.  So make sure to apply to programs that offer the complete training such as:

  • Categorical (C)
  • Primary Care Categorical (M)
  • Advanced (A) combined with a supplemental Preliminary (P)


A Transitional or Preliminary program can also be ranked but that is your last resort.  While this can be a way to get into the system, get experience, and make connections.... at the end of the program you will have to do the match again to get your Advanced training to complete your residency!  Ugh!

Category: Match

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