Adult Neurology Residency

Welcome to Stanford Neurology! Thank you for taking the time to learn about what our adult Neurology residency training program has to offer. Please explore this website and its links, as well as the website for the Neurology Department and those of our multiple divisions and programs. Now with ten (10) adult slots per year, our Program is at an optimal size for our residents to leverage the tremendous number of clinical, research, and educational opportunities that Stanford has to offer. The Program remains small enough, however, to allow for close attending oversight, one-on-one instruction, and meaningful effective interactions between trainees and faculty. There is a strong emphasis on mentorship and career development. Stanford Neurology remains a very close-knit family!

Our adult Neurology residency program is an Advanced (i.e. non-categorical) training program that begins at the PGY-2 level. An initial year in Internal Medicine (i.e. PGY-1 year or “internship”) is required prior to beginning Neurology residency. This year must include eight months in internal medicine with primary responsibility in patient care, or six months in internal medicine with primary responsibility in patient care and a period of at least two months’ time comprising one or more months of pediatrics, emergency medicine, internal medicine, or family medicine.

Excellent options for the preliminary year in Internal Medicine are offered at Stanford  and several highly-regarded Bay Area programs including California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC) in San Francisco, and our county hospital, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center (SCVMC). We have two (2) slots set aside for interns at the following institutions for preliminary years in Internal Medicine:

Stanford (2 maximum), NRMP number: 1820140P1; ACGME program code: 1400521068
Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, NRMP number: 1063140P1; ACGME program code: 1400531065
California Pacific Medical Center, NRMP number: 1061140P1; ACGME program code: 1400512062

Please note that while two (2) slots are linked to Stanford Neurology as Joint Advanced/Prelimary (A/P) Programs at CPMC and SCVMC, there is no maximum to the number of Neurology preliminary candidates that could match to those Programs. Candidates should apply to both the Joint A/P and the regular Internal Medicine Preliminary Program. Please note that the above programs are extremely competitive and decisions regarding interviewing and ranking are made by the Internal Medicine Programs. The Joint A/P slots can only be used by those candidates that apply and match to our Neurology residency program.


Our Training Sites  

Clinical Activities

After hours call


  • primary inpatient services in Stroke and General Neurology
  • epilepsy service (EMU)
  • neurocritical care service
  • floor/ER consult service
  • outpatient subspecialty clinics

“In-house” call
(“night float” system)


  • floor/ER/ICU consults
  • outpatient subspecialty clinics

Home call


  • floor/ER/ICU consults
  • outpatient subspecialty clinics

Home call


  • primary inpatient Neurology service (EMU)
  • NICU/PICU/floor/ER consults
  • outpatient subspecialty clinics

Home call


An optimal balance of inpatient/outpatient experience

Our program has always strived for a balance between inpatient (both primary and consultative) and outpatient experiences, one that best reflects the day-to-day activities of most neurologists in the U.S. today. With our newly expanded Program of ten (10) adult Neurology residents per class, we anticipate approximately 2/3 of patient encounters will take place in the outpatient setting. Sample block schedules can be viewed here. We believe this to be unique feature of Stanford as compared to other top academic Neurology training programs. All adult neurology residents will spend at least 7 months rotating through subspecialty clinics at our new Stanford Neuroscience Health Center. These clinics include Dementia/Behavioral Neurology, Epilepsy, Multiple Sclerosis, Movement Disorders, Neuromuscular/MDA/ALS, Neuro-oncology, Headache, Stroke, Autonomic, and others. All residents maintain a general neurology continuity clinic throughout their three years of training. Residents are paired with one or two selected faculty mentors in continuity clinic through the entire duration of their training. This allows for a continuity of instruction, as well as a continuity of patient care. Continuity clinic is one afternoon per week with residents assigned to either SHC, SCVMC, or the Palo Alto VA for the duration of their training.

Personalized and flexible training

Our Program provides as much flexibility as possible for our residents. Residents each have approximately ten (10) blocks of elective time over the course of their three years, the majority being in the PGY-3 and PGY-4 years. This provides the time for intensive exposure to neurology subspecialties and facilitates individualized career development during residency training. Electives are often taken in such areas as neuroradiology, neuro-ophthalmology, neuropathology, multiple sclerosis, movement disorders, sleep disorders, neuro-oncology, behavioral neurology, etc. Electives need not be restricted to the Department of Neurology. Further, off-site electives, including international ones, are easily possible with special arrangement. Residents have three weeks of vacation per year.

Research exposure during residency

Many of our residents do research to varying degrees during elective blocks. Those residents particularly interested in a research career may apply for the Neuroscience Scholar Track. This track provides opportunity to engage in dedicated research, either for 24 weeks during residency (typically the PGY-3 year), or as a post-graduate research fellow for 1-2 years after completion of residency training. Residents apply for the track in February of their PGY-2 (or occasionally PGY-3) year.

Adult neurology residents also spend three months in Child Neurology during their PGY-3 year. Child neurology rotations offer a combination of inpatient and outpatient care of children with a wide array of neurologic disorders. Our residents benefit from the largest and best Child Neurology faculty on the West Coast. It is also an ACGME requirement that all Neurology residents spend one month rotating through Psychiatry. This is a wonderful experience for our residents as the Psychiatry program at Stanford is world-renowned and welcoming.

Our residency program strives to maintain a rich environment for education. There is a Morning Report four days/week, an “Educational Half-Day” every Wednesday afternoon, and Neurology Grand Rounds each Friday morning. There are also optional subspecialty conferences in epilepsy, stroke, neuromuscular diseases, clinical neurophysiology, tumor board, child neurology, etc. Basic science conferences at Stanford are given by the world’s best, literally the “who’s who” in modern neuroscience. (See Weekly Teaching Calendar and our Conference Schedule)

Diversity and Inclusion

Neil Schwartz, MD, PhD

Program Director,
Adult Neurology Residency Program
Clinical Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences


Nirali Vora, MD

Associate Program Director,
Adult Neurology Residency Program
Clinical Assistant Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences