What are the AMA’s priorities for the innovation projects supported by the Reimagining Residency initiative?

We are seeking projects that:

  • Provide a meaningful and safe transition from undergraduate to graduate medical education (GME)
  • Establish new curricular content and experiences to enhance readiness for practice
  • Promote well-being for trainees and their colleagues in the learning environment

Proposals must address at least one of these aims. It is also acceptable for a proposal to address more than one of the aims.

Who is eligible to apply?

Successful applicants will have direct responsibility for institutional oversight of at least one GME program (for the purposes of this program, GME is defined as the training of residents and fellows). Applicants may be U.S. graduate medical education sponsors, health systems, specialty societies and/or U.S. allopathic and osteopathic medical schools. Applicants must be able to demonstrate the necessary influence over the GME environment to directly involve residents and fellows and ensure the success of the project.

We are seeking proposals that have the potential to transform GME, with results that are generalizable beyond a single residency or fellowship program at a single institution. Therefore, we encourage collaborations—between sponsoring institutions and health systems, between GME programs and medical schools, among programs and/or specialty societies—that can drive meaningful change. Applicants should be institutions and organizational entities, not individuals.

In the case of collaborating applicants, one institution or entity must be identified as the lead applicant and each other collaborator as a co-applicant. Note that, if selected, the lead applicant will be awarded funding by the AMA and will be responsible for distribution of funding to co-applicants.

Who can be a principal investigator (PI)?

The PI must be in a leadership role that includes the necessary influence over GME programs and/or the GME learning environment to facilitate the project. For example:

  • GME leaders such as associate deans/DIOs
  • Health system leaders such as CMOs
  • Leaders of national organizations (program director/specialty societies) who are directly engaged with GME

The PI must have sufficient influence within the lead organization to ensure success of the project. We encourage the engagement of co-PIs who can broaden the oversight of necessary components of the project.

For ease of review, the number of co-PIs that can be listed on Letters of Intent is limited to four. When full proposals are invited more detail about participants and their contributions to the project will be requested. Invited proposals may expand the list of co-PIs at that time.

Is this strictly a residency initiative, or may proposals address innovations in fellowship education?

We are interested in innovation proposals that have broad applicability within GME (i.e., residency and fellowship) and its trainees. The specific environment, whether residency or fellowship, is less important than the potential impact on all of GME and the continuum of physician training.

Can an organization submit more than one proposal?

Yes, but only if every proposal identifies a distinct lead PI. While we encourage collaboration across organizations and institutions, a proposal must have a single PI who has responsibility for organizational oversight of graduate medical education (e.g., DIO, CMO, dean, president of a national organization) and agrees to coordinate the project. A PI may lead only one proposal. An institution or organization may participate in multiple collaborative proposals with distinct lead PIs, however it is unlikely that a single lead organization will receive funding for two proposals.

Will successful applicants join the Accelerating Change in Medical Education Consortium?

Yes, the Reimagining Residency grant recipients will be invited to join the existing Accelerating Change in Medical Education Consortium as a condition of receipt of the grant. Consortium meetings will present opportunities for broad collaboration across the educational continuum and will also involve independent graduate medical education activities.

Is this opportunity only for current Accelerating Change in Medical Education Consortium members?

No. The initiative is open to U.S. graduate medical education sponsors, health systems, specialty societies and/or U.S. allopathic and osteopathic medical schools, whether or not the applicant is currently a member of the Accelerating Change in Medical Education Consortium.

Is this opportunity limited to one type of specialty?


Is there a limit to how many institutions and organizations can collaborate on a proposal?

No. However, each proposal must designate one PI who is responsible for coordinating the project.

How much money will we receive should we be chosen?

The Reimagining Residency initiative is a $15-million grant program in total. We anticipate funding eight projects and each selected project will receive an equal amount of funding over the five-year grant period. No indirects will be awarded. AMA will fund travel to consortium meetings for the grantees.

How many projects will be funded?

We anticipate funding eight projects. Funding will begin in July 2019 and continue for five years.

How will the Letters of Intent be evaluated?

Letters of Intent will be evaluated based upon the following areas:


  • Does the proposal address a significant problem or area of concern in GME?
  • Does the proposal effectively address at least one of the AMA’s overarching aims?


  • How novel is the idea?
  • Does the proposal represent a different way of doing things?
  • Is this a creative or disruptive approach?


  • Are the necessary partners to ensure success involved in the proposal?
  • Is there broad internal and/or external collaboration?


  • How likely is the innovation to influence training in other programs and at other institutions?
  • Is this an idea that is likely to be adopted by others if success is demonstrated?

Potential to improve GME

  • How much better off will trainees, programs and patients be if the proposed idea is implemented?

Alignment of proposal objectives, methods, outcomes and evaluation

  • Are the objectives of the project clear?
  • Are the methods appropriate to the idea being studied?
  • Is it feasible?
  • Are the outcomes measurable and linked to the objectives?
  • Will the evaluation plan demonstrate the success or failure of the idea?

Who will review the Letters of Intent?

The Letters of Intent will be reviewed by AMA staff and governance leadership experienced in medical education. Due to the anticipated volume of submissions, the AMA will not provide individual feedback on Letters of Intent.

What are the accreditation requirements for this project?

Applicants for the program must have accreditation appropriate to their responsibilities. For example, GME programs must be ACGME and/or AOA accredited; hospitals must also have appropriate accreditation.

Will my application be disadvantaged if I also apply for the ACGME Advancing Innovation in Residency Education (AIRE) program?

No. The programs are complementary and do not compete with each other.

What are the formatting requirements for the Letters of Intent?

Formatting guidelines for the Letters of Intent were revised on January 8 and posted to the submission website; guidelines are also below:

  • Strict five-page limit
    • A one-page reference list may be provided and will not count toward the 5-page limit
  • 12-point font, single-spaced, one-inch margins
  • File format must be Microsoft Word or PDF
  • No appendices, biosketches or detailed budgets

There is not a limit to the number of individuals who may be listed but all collaborators must play a material role in the project.

Can I arrange a phone call to discuss the Letters of Intent?

No. Although we are happy to answer specific technical questions, we do not have the capacity to address the volume of requests for phone consultation. To ensure that all applicants have access to consistent information, we prefer to post responses to questions submitted via email to the FAQ on the Reimagining Residency website (http://changeresed.org).

Email [email protected] for additional information or specific questions about the Reimagining Residency initiative.

AMA Reimagining Residency Initiative

Visit http://changeresed.org for the grant dates schedule, informational webinar recording and slides and more.

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