How To Write an Internal Medicine Residency Recommendation Letter

ERAS Letters of Recommendation serve several key functions in your residency application: Demonstrate experiences specific to the specialty to which you are applying. Demonstrate good rapport with multiple physicians. Showcase work ethic, commitment to the specialty, and contributions to medicine.

When it comes to gaining admission into an internal medicine residency program, a well-crafted letter of recommendation can be a deciding factor between acceptance and rejection. A letter of recommendation should accurately reflect the applicant’s dedication, experience and academic qualifications in the field of internal medicine. This is an important process and should be tailored to the specific medical school, as well as to the individual’s qualifications and skillset. As such, it is important for the letter of recommendation to be written with thoughtfulness and care. Nevertheless, the letter should also provide accurate and detailed information about the applicant and their qualifications. In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of a letter of recommendation, the elements to consider when writing one, and provide tips and tricks to writing a successful letter of recommendation for an internal medicine residency program.


What to include in an internal medicine residency letter of recommendation

An average recommendation letter is one to two pages long, with an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. It provides information about the applicant’s abilities, traits, and accomplishments and is written in the format and style of a formal letter. Here are the parts of a typical recommendation letter:

Why do you need a recommendation letter for an internal medicine residency?

After graduating from medical school, individuals looking to enroll in a residency program frequently need to submit one or more letters of recommendation to support their applications. They might contact a former teacher or a person with medical industry experience. Typically, the applicant asks a former coworker or mentor to write a letter on their behalf. The author is someone who has in-depth knowledge of the candidate and is skilled at persuading readers of their advantages. These records assist the program director in evaluating the candidate’s qualifications and abilities from the viewpoint of someone who has had direct contact with or supervision over the candidate.

Recommendation letters assist program directors in determining whether a candidate is a good fit for their organization because residency programs can be competitive. The director can learn more about the applicant and assess their professional strengths when the letter writer can attest to their academic prowess, clinical proficiency, and personal qualities with examples of their work. Writers of recommendation letters provide specific examples of the applicant’s abilities and accomplishments to demonstrate that they are qualified for admission to a residency program.

How to write a letter of recommendation for an internal medicine residency

The steps for writing a letter of recommendation for a candidate for an internal medicine residency are as follows:

1. Know the requirements

Knowing the precise requirements of the program for which you are writing a letter of recommendation is the first step in writing one that is effective. You might ask a candidate to send any information they have regarding the program if they ask you to write a letter on their behalf. For instance, understanding the hospital where the residency will be held and its guiding principles will enable you to write a recommendation letter that demonstrates the candidate’s compatibility with the institution’s goals.

You can fulfill the establishment’s submission expectations by being aware of its requirements and deadlines. Understanding each program’s specifications will help you create letters that adhere to its requirements because different programs may have different requirements. The program director may have a favorable impression of you and the candidate if you follow those expectations completely and accurately.

2. Brainstorm content

Once you are familiar with the program and the requirements for submission, begin thinking of content to include in the letter. Consider your relationship with the candidate and your influence in their life as a mentor. Consider their academic performance, personal traits, and contributions to your classroom or institution, for instance, if you were one of their professors. Think of specifics that set them apart from other students you’ve taught, like their capacity for leadership in the classroom or dedication to enhancing the campus community. Providing concrete examples that are related to your partnership with the candidate strengthens their application.

Try using free writing as a brainstorming exercise to produce ideas. Using this technique, set a timer for five minutes, and during that time, jot down any thoughts you have about the candidate’s qualities and achievements. Write for the full five minutes, then review your thoughts at the end of the session. Establish links between your ideas, such as by looking for trends that highlight the candidates’ most recurrent or compelling qualities. Set a new timer for five minutes and repeat the exercise if you need more ideas.

3. Create an outline

Make an outline for your letter once you have thought of everything you want to say in the recommendation. Making an outline will help you organize your thoughts so the reader can easily follow them. Outlining may make your writing process more efficient. It can be simpler to write out the details in the drafting stage of the writing process if you decide in advance which details to include in your letter and arrange them by paragraph. Determine how many body paragraphs you’ll need before creating an outline. Make a topic sentence and a list of examples to support it for each paragraph.

4. Write your draft

Start writing the first draft of your letter after creating your outline. Your draft may be informal or even lacking at this point in the writing process. This phase aims to organize the information and finalize your ideas. To fully develop your points and arrange them so the reader can easily follow them, you may decide to write several drafts. To ensure that your ideas are well-developed and persuasive, be adaptable during this stage of the process and change them as you write. For instance, as you write, you might consider adding more information.

5. Edit, revise and proofread

Once you’ve finished writing, edit it for clarity, tone, organization, and grammar. Look for opportunities to enhance the draft’s organization while it’s being edited. Think about whether you can provide more information to strengthen your arguments or if you can omit any details to highlight your main points. After content editing, proofread your letter to ensure that it has a businesslike tone and is free of grammatical and spelling errors. Spell out words and refrain from using slang to make your writing appear more professional.

Try reading your draft aloud to yourself or having someone else read it to you as a proofreading technique. Hearing your own voice may enable you to identify any sentences that could use clarification. Another tactic is to put your writing aside for a few hours or even overnight. When you come back to your writing after taking a break, you’ll be more alert to any small errors. Lastly, try reading your writing backward. This tactic removes the context from your writing so you can concentrate on the language rather than the content.

Internal medicine residency recommendation letter template

Here is a sample internal medicine letter of recommendation format and organization guide:


[Address the reader with a professional greeting or their name. If a name is not known, use “To whom it may concern” or “Dear Program Director” in the salutation. “].

I wholeheartedly endorse [name of candidate] for the internal medicine residency at [name of hospital or establishment]. I oversaw [Candidates name] while they were [student/intern/assistant] at [Name of Your Institution], and I think they’ll be a great asset to your facility.

[Describe the candidate’s clinical skills, character traits, academic performance, and greatest accomplishments in several paragraphs. Focus on describing qualities that make the candidate a good fit for the residency program’s goals, values, and needs while offering concrete examples to support your assertions. ].

In conclusion, I wholeheartedly endorse [candidates name] for admission to your program. [Summarize the key ideas from the letter’s body in a few sentences] They seem like they’d contribute significantly to the community at your facility. If you have any additional questions or would like to talk more about their application, please don’t hesitate to contact me by phone or email.

[Your signature]
[Email address]
[Phone number]

Internal medicine residency recommendation letter example

Here is a sample recommendation letter to assist you in creating your own:

17 January 2021

Dear program director,

Joanna Johnson is highly recommended for the internal medicine residency at St Augustine Center for Internal Medicine. Dr. Johnson was an intern at the University of St. Thomas under my direction. I think Augustine Medical Center will be a great asset to your facility.

Dr. While serving as an intern in my department, Johnson demonstrated exceptional leadership abilities and a commitment to learning. She distinguished herself from her peers by showing her dedication to learning and growing by showing up for every shift with a brief list of questions for me to answer based on our work together. She also showed her leadership abilities by assuming extra responsibilities when necessary and building strong bonds with junior interns. She received praise from several of our junior interns for her assistance in providing answers and assisting them in locating supplies.

As an intern, Dr. Johnson also showed exceptional clinical ability. She was praised by many of her patients for being pleasant to work with. To explain conditions and procedures to her patients, she had excellent communication skills. When dealing with difficult cases, she also displayed good judgment. I’m eager to watch her advance in her pursuit of an internal medicine career because of the compassion she displayed during her clinical training.

In summary, I give Dr. Johnson my highest recommendation for entry into your program. She is an exceptional candidate for any residency because of her commitment to clinical excellence, leadership development, and compassion. I believe she will contribute significantly to the community at your facility. If you have any additional questions or would like to talk more about their application, please don’t hesitate to contact me by phone or email.

Dr. Judy Baker
[email protected]


How many letters of recommendation do you need for internal medicine residency?

Request at least two letters of recommendation in addition to the “official department of medicine letter.” At least one of these recommendations must come from a member of the internal medicine faculty at your medical school or from a professor at a university where you have taken electives.

Can a resident write a letter of recommendation for residency?

Avoid requesting a letter from a resident or fellow. The attending should draft your letter even though they might be the most knowledgeable about your clinical abilities. Give the attending the names of the residents and fellows you worked with so they can contact them for advice if necessary.

How do I get a strong letter of recommendation for residency?

For residency applications, a great letter of recommendation usually explains in detail how the writer knows the applicant. The letter writer should explain your working history, including any time you spent together, your specialty, and your aptitude and enthusiasm for it.

How long should a residency letter of recommendation?

Your prediction of the student’s performance in that specialty as a resident and future practitioner; Anything that may distinguish this applicant from others. Limit your letter to one or two pages. The strongest letters include at least three paragraphs.

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