Researchers from Mass General and the University of Vermont surveyed 2884 fourth-year students from 20 US medical schools in 2014; 1367 (47.4%) responded—52% of them were female.
Just over half of the students applied to internal medicine, pediatrics, or surgery residencies.
While the average number of programs applied to was 36.4, those seeking surgery applied to a mean of 58.2 programs, significantly more (p < 0.001) than those applying to any other specialty.
Except for radiology, for which applicants averaged 16.9 interviews, all other specialties including surgery had a mean of about 12 interviews per applicant.
Of those who answered the survey, only 71 (5.2%) did not match in the specialty they wanted.