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The AMA Research Challenge is the largest national, multi-specialty research event for medical students, residents and fellows, and international medical graduates.

In 2020, the AMA hosted its first virtual research event (formerly known as AMA Research Symposium) and received a record number of abstract submissions and participants.

This year's 2021 challenge includes a series of virtual events and activities for AMA members. The challenge kicks off with a call for abstracts in May, followed by the poster session and semifinals Oct. 21-23, and the finals on Dec. 8.

Free for AMA member medical students, residents and fellows, and IMGs

Abstracts should focus on six topic areas—basic science, clinical and transitional research, clinical vignettes, health systems science, medical education innovation, public health and health policy. Submit your abstracts on vaccines, health equity, telemedicine and more.

Submit an abstract

Hundreds of abstracts will be accepted to the virtual poster session. Top scored will be invited to the virtual semifinals. Submission deadline is July 21, 2021, 11:59 p.m. Central.


Steps to submit an abstract

Abstract submission documents

Submit an abstract by the deadline of Wednesday, July 21, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. Central. Email [email protected] with questions.

Hear from a resident expert on what judges look for in an abstract.


Sign up to judge abstracts! Open to all physicians. Evaluating and scoring abstracts is a 2-hour time commitment between Friday, July 23 and Monday, Aug. 16.

Abstract judging is eligible for CME 

  • Each abstract review is eligible for 0.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. The American Medical Association designates this other (learning while judging) activity for a maximum of 7.50 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. 
  • Accreditation statement.
  • Disclosure statement: Unless noted, all individuals in control of content reported no relevant financial relationships. 
  • If applicable, all relevant financial relationships have been mitigated.

The deadline to sign up to judge abstracts is July 12. Physicians are encouraged to share this opportunity with peers and colleagues. Email [email protected] with questions.

Oct. 21-23

AMA members are invited to attend the free virtual AMA Research Challenge poster session and semifinals, and vote for their favorite research. The top five vote-getters will advance to the finals.

Additional information about accessing the poster session and voting will be posted once available.

Dec. 8

Five finalists advancing from the semifinals will present their research to a select panel of judges and compete to be the overall winner.

The AMA Research Advisory Committee encourages medical students, trainees and physicians of all backgrounds, including underrepresented minorities at every level, to participate in the events. The committee, as well as the AMA organization, are committed to prioritizing diversity, equity and inclusion.

As the physicians’ powerful ally in patient care and a leading national voice on health policy, the AMA has placed equity at the center of its work to shape the future of medicine.

Victoria Danan and Shamsh Shaikh were announced the night of Jan. 13 as co-winners of the first AMA Research Challenge.


Victoria Danan

Read more about this finalist>>

Shamsh Shaikh

Read more about this finalist >>

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