Postgraduate Studies in

Canada: Medicine 

Postgraduate Studies in Canada: Medicine 

Medicine is one of the most gruelling and demanding pursuits to take up in Canada and requires a lot of grit and patience. If you are an international student looking to pursue postgraduate studies in medicine in Canada, you would need to acquaint yourself with the system. Also, you would need to qualify with the list of prerequisites to proceed further. Normally, medical schools in Canada require you to complete a bachelor’s degree even before applying for a medicine programme. The MD programme is typically  four years followed by a licentiate examination and residency training as per specialization.

After the long process, some doctors still prefer to continue their education and specialize further in their fields. Doctors who complete their residency training have the option to take up new learning opportunities as well. If you are applying for post-graduate specializations in Canada, make sure you have completed your qualifying studies from recognized schools. You would also need to clear the qualifying eligibility exams for physicians and need to showcase your residency training proof.

As per The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC) – an academic partnership of Canada’s faculties of medicine, learners have the option to take up subspecialty residency, postgraduate diploma programmes, enhanced skill programmes, apprenticeship models, Areas of Focused Competence Programs (AFC), Certificate of Added Competency (CAC), fellowships et al.

Sub-specialty residencies are programs of additional medical training. This is taken up after the completion of the core residency which a learner completes in a specialty that is accredited by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC).

Medical schools often provide the option of fellowships as learning opportunities to allow trainees to accumulate valuable experience in their specialized area of expertise. These work on the apprenticeship model. The ‘fellowship’ apprenticeship model must not be confused with the status of Fellow of the RCPSC or Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Canada.

Specialty of family medicine requires additional training that is offered to residents after they complete their residency training. These are called enhanced skills programs and they are accredited under the departments of family medicine of each university. The programs are governed under five national standards as well: Emergency Medicine, Palliative Care, Family Practice Anaesthesia, Health Care of the Elderly, and Clinician Scholar. Family physicians completing additional training in any of the five become eligible to receive CAC.

Other learning modes include programs at medical schools such as assisting recent family medicine graduates and family physicians in practice.

Aplicar’s partner universities such as University of Waterloo and York University offer the opportunity for students to pursue postgraduate studies in the field of medicine and increase their sub-specialty expertise. There are at least 38 sub-specialties which are broadly pursued and practiced in medicine in Canada. Though in no way absolute or limiting, research is an important component of medical education and medical faculties continue to produce knowledge to explore that avenue. 

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