1. PGY-1 Schedule
    • Request your schedule early if there is a particular order of rotations or electives and vacation time you would like.
    • Ask upper-year residents about their experience with off-service rotations.
    • Remember to request an orientation for each rotation you do and a discussion of learning objectives.
  2. Requesting Time Off
    • See section titled Vacation and Leave for details about the time off you are entitled to.
    • Plan your holidays and request time off as early as possible.
    • Most schools and services will require at least four weeks’ notice prior to starting the rotation to create the call schedule.
    • Remember vacation time is on a first-come first-served basis.
    • Most residents will want to take some time off in the first three to four months of residency, so keep that in mind so you don’t burn out.
  3. Residency Research Project
    • This project is compulsory, so start brainstorming possible ideas!
  4. Committee Involvement
    • Add balance to your experience by taking on one or more of the many resident leadership positions available.
    • Committees are a great way to meet people in your residency program and to get to know your program director and residents from other universities. See ways to get involved.
  5. Arranging Electives in Residency
    • Think ahead - the earlier you arrange for your electives the better, particularly for competitive electives.
    • The process is similar to applying for your residency.
    • Competitive times are July to September, before R3 applications are due.
    •  Typically you book an elective with the site lead for the service you want to work for.

    • Most programs require you to apply directly to the Program Director of the service you want to work in.

    • The application may be online or written.

    • Other documents that may be required:

      • Written permission from site Program Director at location of elective

      • Written permission from home school PD

      • Curriculum Vitae (CV)

      • Copy of medical degree

      • Immunization record

      • Proof of CMPA coverage

      • N95 mask fit

      • CPSO number

  • Once you’ve confirmed your elective, perform the following, as required:
    • EMR training  – FYI: this can take hours
    • Modules on personal protective equipment (PPE), fire safety, etc. - FYI: these can take hours
    • Signed LOA  – school will send you this and you send it back signed
    • Other administration: ID badge, scrubs, parking, etc.


Important Considerations for International or Out of Province Electives

  • Typically, there are limitations to the amount of time you are allowed to work outside of the province. Check with your home program to find out how long this is.
  • Consider applying for international electives early. You often need to participate in pre-departure training from your home school prior to travel.

Resources for Finding Electives

  • Other residents and upper years, ask program and site directors about elective opportunities based on your learning goals.
  • SRPC has a database you can use to review or enter information about electives. Check it out here.
  • ROMP is a great resource for setting up electives. You can search based on discipline and location. Click here for more information.

Documents to keep handy for Electives and Community Hospital Rotations

  • Immunization record
  • Licentiate of the Medical Council of Canada (LMCC) I/II exam results
  • CMA/OMA/CCFP membership cards and numbers
  • CPSO license
  • CMPA registration
  • Up-to-date CV
  • Photocopy of medical degree