Family Medicine

A family physician is trained to provide care to patients and their families with a focus on their community. The care provided is continuing, comprehensive, coordinate, preventive, and delivered in a personalized manner to patients regardless of age, gender, presence of disease or organ system affected.

Family physicians engage in a broad range of clinical activities that occur in the office, hospital, home, nursing home, extended care facility and other settings. Commonly performed procedures include vasectomy, flexible sigmoidoscopy, colposcopy, skin biopsy, and casting and splinting. Family physicians practice in geographic settings ranging from rural to urban including international and everything in between.

Residency Training

  • Duration of training: Three years (some programs are four years in length).
  • Number of programs nationally: 614
  • Number of entering residency positions per year: 3, 654
  • Types of fellowships or subspecialties: Faculty Development, Sports Medicine, Geriatrics, Women’s Health, Research, Rural Medicine, Substance Abuse, Adolescent Medicine, Palliative Care/Hospice Medicine, and Integrative Medicine.
  • Type of Match: Regular.
  • Overall competitiveness: Mildly Competitive. The average student is very likely to match.

Primary Faculty Contact for M1's and M2's

Kent J. Sheets, Ph.D.

Medical Student Club or Interest Group

Contact Andrea Murawa at

Shadowing or Mentoring Experiences for M1's or M2's

Joel J. Heidelbaugh, M.D., FAAFP, FACG 


The American Academy of Family Physicians offers a Virtual Family Medicine Interest Group

Suggested Journals, Books & Information for Interested Students

    • American Family Physician.
    • Annals of Family Medicine.
    • Family Medicine.
    • Journal of Family Practice.
    • How to Choose a Medical Specialty by Anita Taylor, 6th edition, 2017 (also available as an eBook).
    • Regarding background and philosophy of family medicine: any books/articles by Ian McWhinney or Lynn Carmichael