The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between residency program selection factors and placements we received on candidates' match lists. An annual (2001-2004) telephone survey of applicants (n = 140) ranked for acceptance to the department's residency program addressed 16 program selection factors important in choosing our site. Candidates' comments about these program selection factors were recorded. Logistic regression was conducted with program selection factors as independent variables and program receipt of candidates' top quartile match list rankings as the dependent variable. The overall response rate was 68% (n = 95). Applicants' positive ratings on 3 program selection factors were related to our receipt of top quartile match list rankings: 1) our capacity to meet personal career goals (odds ratio [OR] 4.59); 2) positive faculty-resident relationships (OR 1.97); and 3) suitable location (OR 1.96). The single most important factor contributing to receipt of candidates' top quartile match list placements was positive perceptions of our program's abilities to meet their personal career goal needs.