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International Medical Graduates (IMG)

An international medical graduate (IMG) is defined as someone who has completed his/her postgraduate residency training outside of Canada or the United States.

Additional Information

Jurisdiction Approved Training

There are 29 international jurisdictions that the Royal College has assessed and deemed as having met Royal College criteria. For the graduates of these particular jurisdictions, the College will assess their training to determine the extent to which they have successfully met and completed the Royal College training requirements. When the training is deemed comparable and acceptable, the IMGs are ruled eligible to take the Royal College certification examination. Success at the certification examination will lead to Royal College certification.

The Royal College accepts training from some international jurisdictions that have similar residency training accreditation systems to Canada.

Click here for a list of accepted jurisdictions »

NOTE: Training in one of the approved jurisdictions does not automatically confer eligibility to the certification examinations. Training must be assessed by the Royal College to confirm that it is substantially equivalent to Canadian training and has been satisfactorily completed. In addition, not all specialties are approved in each jurisdiction.

Practice Ready Assessment Route (PRA)

The Practice Ready Assessment (PRA) process is for International Medical Graduates (IMGs) in Canada with Certification from an international jurisdiction, who intend to live and practice in Canada after they obtain Royal College certification. IMGs interested in applying for the PRA process must do so through their Provincial Regulatory Authority.

Individual Competency Assessment for IMGs

Individual Competency Assessment is for IMG's who enter Canadian residency but are assessed for eligibility to shorten residency due to competencies already achieved in an international jurisdiction. Royal College criteria to enter this route include:

  • completion of an undergraduate medical degree deemed acceptable by the Foundation for Advancement of International Medical Education and Research (FAIMER);
  • specialist certification in the country of origin with a minimum of three years of training;
  • must have completed The National Assessment Collaboration (NAC) examination which assesses the knowledge, skills and attitudes of essential for entrance into a Canadian postgraduate residency program
  • entering at PGY 2 level, clinical trainees must be classified and registered as residents with the office of postgraduate medical education, must complete at least two years in an accredited Canadian residency program with at least one year at a senior residency level (PGY 3-5);
  • a passing grade on one of three examinations - MCCEE, MCCQE I and II or USMLE parts I to III; and
  • proficiency in either English or French.

This process is initiated through written recommendation made by the residency program director and postgraduate dean of a Canadian faculty of medicine. The Royal College will review applications for assessment of training of applicants once they have entered residency in a Royal College accredited program after being accepted for PGY 2 entry level.