Memorial University of Newfoundland - Neurology - St. John's

2022 R-1 Main Residency Match - first iteration
CMG Stream for CMG

Last approved on January 20, 2022

Summary of changes

Approximate Quota:


Accreditation status : Accredited

Provincial Criteria

Dr. Fraser Clift
Memorial University of Newfoundland  
300 Prince Philip Drive
St. John's , Newfoundland and Labrador, A1B 3V6
(709) 864-6073
(709) 864-2892
Neurology Residency Program

Program Contacts

Dr. Fraser Clift
Program Director
(709) 864-6073

Dr. Marsha Eustace
Assistant Program Director

Ms. Jill Colbourne
Academic Program Administrator

Important Information

Please review Memorial University's Provincial Criteria and admission requirements for postgraduate medical education. 



As of September 2021, Memorial University requires COVID-19 vaccines for all students, faculty and staff, and masks are required on all Memorial campuses in indoor spaces. Please refer to the University's COVID-19 website for up-to-date information.

Return of Service


No return of service (RoS) is required for CMG seats.


General Instructions

Program application language: English

Supporting Documentation

Canadian citizenship
CaRMS partners with third-party organizations to verify your citizenship or permanent resident status. If your status is verified by one of these organizations, you will not need to provide citizenship documents in your application. If your citizenship status is not verified, you must provide one of the documents listed below.
Document must be notarized/certified
Submit one of the following documents to verify your Canadian citizenship:
• Canadian Birth Certificate or Act of Birth
• Certificate of Canadian Citizenship
• Passport page showing Canadian Citizenship
• Canadian Permanent Resident Card (both sides of card)
• Canadian Citizenship Card (both sides of card)
Language proficiency
Submit one of the following documents to verify your language proficiency:
• Occupational English Test (OET) - Medicine
• Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) - General

Exemption to English language proficiency testing

IMGs that are currently practicing in Canada as a family physician or Royal College specialist (must have CCFP, FRCPC or FRCSC designation), and are providing the majority of their patient care in English, may be exempt from providing up-to-date language proficiency testing. Any applicant in this situation should write to in advance of the application deadline, to determine if you meet this criteria for exemption. Applicants currently in a clinical fellowship program are not exempted.

If you graduated from a medical school in Canada or the United States, where English is the language of instruction, you are exempt from providing proof of language proficiency.

Who is required to provide English Language Proficiency?

If you graduated from a medical school in Canada or the United States, where the language of instruction is not in English (e.g. French), PGME requires proof of proficiency in the English language. It is important to note that this requirement extends to all such applicants, regardless of whether other secondary/post-secondary education took place in English and regardless of citizenship.

If you graduated from a medical school in Canada or the United States, which provides training in multiple language streams, please self-identify which stream you graduated from (e.g. English-Stream, French-Stream, Spanish-Stream, etc.) by indicating your stream in the 'Degree Obtained' box in your CaRMS Online application under Medical Education (e.g. MD, University of Ottawa – French Stream).

Canadians who complete undergraduate medical education outside of Canada and the United States are considered IMGs; therefore, if you complete undergraduate medical education (in part or in full) in a country not recognized as having English as the first language, you must provide proof of proficiency in the English language. Note that elective rotations/experiences – regardless of length or location (including Canada) – will not satisfy the language proficiency requirements.

Requirements for educational registration with the CPSNL differ slightly in that PGME will only exempt IMGs from language proficiency testing if both their basic medical education and patient care experience was in one of the countries that is recognized as having English as a first language: 

  • Anguilla

  • Antigua and Barbuda

  • Australia

  • Bahamas

  • Barbados

  • Bermuda

  • Canada

  • Dominica

  • Grenada

  • Ireland

  • Jamaica

  • New Zealand

  • St. Kitts and Nevis

  • St. Lucia

  • St. Vincent and the Grenadines

  • Singapore

  • South Africa

  • Trinidad and Tobago

  • United Kingdom

  • United States of America

  • Virgin Islands (United Kingdom)

  • Virgin Islands (United States) 

All other applicants, including those who have completed any other non-medical schooling in English, must have taken one of the following:

  • International English Language Testing System - Academic (IELTS-Academic), within 24 months of the residency start date (July 1), with a minimum score of 7 in each of the components in the same sitting;
  • Occupational English Test - Medicine (OET-Medicine), with a minimum grade of B in each of the four subsets in the same sitting;
  • Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program Test - General (CELPIP-General), with a minimum score of 9 in each of the four skills in the same sitting.

Results must be available by the CaRMS document review deadline.

Reference documents
Number requested: 3

3 reference letters are required.

Additional documents
Personal Letter 
Word count
Minimum : None
Maximum : None

Successful candidates will include information about their background including their journey in medicine. Additionally, it is important to highlight aspects of the field of Neurology which they find intriguing, and why they think a career in Neurology is for them.

We would also like to know more about candidates interests outside of medicine, highlighting their ability to balance work life and personal life.

Lastly, we would like to know why they are considering a residency at Memorial. It would be nice to highlight knowledge of the University, program and province.


Maximum word count: 500 words. 

Custom Résumé / CV 

Memorial Declaration for Interruptions 

ALL applicants must submit the Declaration of Interruptions form with their application.

Consent for disclosure 

ALL applicants must submit the Consent to Disclose form with their application.

Medical School Transcript 

If available, please order from your Registrar's Office.

Medical Student Performance Record 

If available

[Note: Photograph is used as memory aid only]

Undergraduate Transcript (Bachelor's Degree) 

If applicable

Conditionally required
Medical School Diploma 

If available

Optional - will be reviewed
MCCQE Part I - Statement of Results 

If applicable.

MCCQE Part I - Supplemental Information Report 

If applicable.

Review Process

Applications submitted after file review has opened on January 31, 2022

Supporting documents (excluding letters of reference) that arrive after file review has opened  on  January 31, 2022

Letters of reference that arrive after the unmasking date on January 31, 2022



  • March 14, 2022
  • March 15, 2022
Interviews will be conducted virtually and as such there will be a degree of flexibility to accommodate time zone differences. All interview times will be scheduled using the Newfoundland time zone. Dates of interviews will be held on Monday, March 14 and Tuesday, March 15, 2022.  

Program will notify all applicants through CaRMS Online and will send email invitations directly to applicants selected for an interview.
Traditional interview format (one on one/two on one).  

Selection Criteria

Eligible candidates must have a demonstrated interest in the field of neurology and have a good academic record. Other factors including reports by clinical preceptors, interviews, personal letters and interest in scholarly activity may also be taken into consideration.

Program goals

Upon completion of the five year residency training program in Neurology at Memorial University, a resident is expected to be competent in Neurology. 

The resident must acquire a working knowledge of the theoretical basis of the specialty, including its foundations in the basic medical sciences and research. 

Residents must demonstrate the requisite knowledge, skills, and attitudes for effective patient-centred care and service to a diverse population. 

As physicians, residents in our program are expected to provide quality care to the residents of Newfoundland and Labrador.

We strive to continue to provide a supportive training environment with strong collegiality between Neurologists and residents and a mentorship program to assist with resident well-being and career planning.

Selection process goals

Neurology is a very cerebral speciality. We are interested in applicants who share our collective enthusiasm for the speciality. Ideally, candidates would have completed rotations in Neurology either through core clerkship or elective opportunities.

Given Memorial is a research focused University, successful applicants should have research experience or be interested in exploring various research avenues.

It is also important to consider that we offer a smaller Residency program, consisting of a small staff-to-resident-ratio, which gives us an advantage over larger programs, allowing for greater exposure to complex cases early in residency. Incoming residents should be prepared for this, and able to meet that challenge by having a strong work ethic and an aptitude for being able to rise to that challenge. 

Overall, we are looking for energetic, and enthusiastic residents who would be excited to explore Neurology with us.

File review process

Review team composition : Our file review team consists of the program director, assistant program director, a resident committee (generally two residents in their PGY 3 year) along with a separate member of the Residency Program Committee. We review all applications separately, and meet to review as a committee.

Average number of applications received by our program in the last five years : 51 - 200
In the first iteration, we review files only from Canadian Medical schools, however, open to applicants from international Universities in the second iteration.

Average percentage of applicants offered interviews : 76 - 100 %
The majority of applicants are offered interviews as long as they meet the requisites listed.

Evaluation criteria :
File component Criteria
CV Background education along with employment history, volunteer experience/community involvement.
Electives Interest in the specialty but also performance during individual electives/rotations.
Examinations We no not evaluate this file component.
Extra-curricular Well rounded skill set, with community leadership and involvement.
Leadership skills Strong communicator, collaborator; someone who would excel in the non Medical Expert CanMEDS roles.
MSPRs Medical School Record including ITERS and comments about performance during individual rotations.
Personal letters Show interest in the program and interest in the field of Neurology. Interest/intrigue in NL.
Reference documents Someone who can speak to the applicant’s proficiency in medicine and/or academia.
Research/Publications We have a focus on research at Memorial and like to see some background interest in our applicants.
Transcripts Reviewed to gain insight into prior academic performance.

Elective criteria

We are looking for and rewarding applicants who have completed a broad range of electives including in our discipline.

Interview process

Interview format :

We may accommodate requests to re-schedule interviews for applicants due to weather, technology failure, or unforeseen circumstances.

Interview evaluation criteria :
Interview components Criteria
Collaboration skills We like to hear of experience in a team setting.
Collegiality We look for past experience which can highlight this integral skill set.
Communication skills We like to hear of past experiences were language/communication helped better a patient's care.
Health advocacy The successful applicants must be able to give specific examples of their efforts in health advocacy
Interest in the discipline What has drawn people to the field of neurology and to pursue a career in it.
Interest in the program Applicants have done background reading into MUN and why they think they would be a good fit.
Leadership skills Examples which can highlight this quality in the applicant.
Professionalism Medicine requires an individual to uphold a standard of moral fortitude and ethical behaviour.
Scholarly activities Our research program is growing at Memorial and we like to see enthusiasm about research.

Information gathered outside of CaRMS application

We do not consider any information gathered outside of the CaRMS application and local interview processes.

Ranking process

The behavior(s) exhibited below during the interview process may prevent an applicant from being ranked by our program :

Program Highlights

The Memorial University Neurology Residency Training Program's priority is the training of competent general neurologists. At the same time, there is a great deal of flexibilty built into the schedule to allow residents to tailor the program somewhat towards their needs for practice and future goals including pursuit of fellowships.  

Our strengths include a thorough academic curriculum, substantial exposure to patient care and the close colleagial atmosphere of a small program. 

Program Curriculum

This residency program is for 5 years.

Program length of training does not exceed the Royal College or College of Family Physicians of Canada standard.

The Neurology Residency Program at Memorial University of Newfoundland is a five year program. Memorial University uses 4 week rotations. We moved to a Competence By Design curriculum in July 2020 and we use a dedicated MUNCAT app for EPA completion. Regular clinical coaching is provided to our residents.


This is a year of mixed rotations:

- Internal medicine - 5 blocks (Internal medicine is divided over the first 2 years. There will be some flexibility regarding timing of rotations but ideally those included in the PGY1 year will be 2 rotations on general medicine CTUs, and 1 each of Rheumatology, Geriatrics and Hematology subject to availability.)

- Neurosurgery - 1 block

- Emergency Medicine - 2 blocks

- Neurology inpatient service - 2 blocks

- Electives - 2 blocks

- 2 weeks Ophthalmology 

- 2 weeks ENT


Mixed rotations including:

Internal Medicine - 6 blocks (1 ICU, 1 CCU, 1 cardiology clinics, 1 endocrinology and 2 selectives)

Psychiatry - 2 blocks (consult liaison service and geriatric psychiatry)

Palliative Care - 1 blocks

Neurology consults - 1 blocks

Neurology wards - 1 blocks

Neuroradiology - 1 blocks

Physiatry - 1 block (out of province)


Adult neurology - 12 blocks (neurology inpatient service, consult service and clinics)

Research - 1 block


- Pediatric neurology - 3 blocks

- EMG/EEG - 5 blocks (1 block EEG is completed in Montreal)

- Electives - 4 blocks

- Community neurology - 1 block in New Brunswick


- Adult neurology - 7 blocks (neurology inpatient service, consult service and clinics)

- Neuropathology - 2 blocks

- Research - 1 block

- Electives - 2 blocks


Neurology residents are included as part of the Internal Medicine research program. The expectation exists that residents will complete at least 3 scholarly projects (some of which can include case presentations) during their training and will participate in the Discipline of Medicine Scholarship Day (normally held in June of each year).



The program includes a comprehensive academic teaching program.


There is an organized academic curriculum as follows:

Tuesday 8-9 am - Mainly a didactic lecture series organized to ensure adequate coverage of a wide range of topics based on the objectives of training provided by the Royal College for neurology residents.

Tuesday 9-10 am - Sessions on the non-medical expert CanMeds competencies, journal club, didactic lectures, case-based learning and clinical skills sessions.

Tuesday 10-11 am - Neurology rounds (case based learning including pediatric neurology, neurosurgery and neuroradiology). 



Training Sites


- Training sites include: Health Sciences Centre, St. Clare's Mercy Hospital, Waterford Hospital, Leonard A. Miller Centre. EEG rotations are completed at McGill or University of Toronto; Community Neurology is completed in Saint John, NB; and a physiatry rotation is also completed out of province. 

- There are opportunities for interprovincial and international electives while training for perhaps as many as six months in total.

- The ratio of residents to faculty in 2022 will be 10:7. 

- For inpatient service, the average patient load is 20 and consult service average patient load is two consults per day following a total of approximately five patients.

- There are multiple general neurology clinics per week. There are subspecialty clinics in MS, epilepsy, movement disorders, botox for movement disorders and spasticity, and EMG. 

- Our institution does provide residents with access to electronic medical resources.

Summary of changes

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