Do you have a medical school interview coming up? If so, congratulations!
This is a huge milestone in your medical school application journey.
Lots of students feel anxious about interviewing, but we are here to assure you that you have nothing to worry about. Your application already impressed the recruiters, which is why they invited you to an interview, so they can potentially offer you the chance to study Medicine at their university.
In this article, we will outline what questions are asked in medical interviews, which we hope you find helpful.
What is a medical school interview?
A medical school interview is the next stage of the medical school admissions process, following the Personal Statement and the UCAT test. It is a process for recruiters to shortlist the best candidates to offer a place on their Medicine programme.
You will be invited to the university campus, where you will meet some of the staff who work in the Medicine department. In some cases, your medical school interview may take place online.
You will be told the date, time, location and format of your interview in your ‘invitation to interview’ email or letter.
Medical school interviews are usually held between November and March, to join the Medicine programme the following September. Some universities such as Oxford may ask you to take additional tests in addition to your interview.
During your interview, the interviewers will ask you a series of questions, to assess your capability for Medicine, your motivation for studying the course, and how it relates to your future ambitions.
You will have a short time to give a good impression, so appearing and conducting yourself professionally, whilst showing your aptitude and passion for medicine is vital for you to get the result you want.
You will have the opportunity to ask any questions at the end of the interview, so use this wisely.
What are medical school interviewers looking for?
There are many attributes that medical school interviewers are looking for in applicants when they attend the interview.
You have to sell yourself and your skills, to show the interviewers that you will be an asset to their Medicine course.
The interviewers want to see:
- Your motivation to study Medicine and why you want to work in the medical field.
- That you understand what a career in Medicine entails.
- Your academic and intellectual potential.
- That you possess the qualities of a good doctor.
- That you are expanding your knowledge of Medicine and healthcare by undertaking relevant work experience, reading scientific books and journals, attending lectures, etc.
- Examples of the relevant skills that are needed for a career in Medicine. For example, communication, leadership, and empathy.
Interviewers are also looking for examples of:
- Excellent communication skills – to show that you can adequately interact with patients, provide them with good care, and work well in a team.
- Academic competence – you will spend a lot of time studying, so you should be an excellent student, who is not thrown by the number of exams and assignments.
- A strong interest in the human body – to show that Medicine is the right pathway for you, as opposed to Dentistry or any other scientific subject.
- Genuine ambition to become a doctor – you must justify your passion to become a doctor and illustrate the steps you are already taking to get there.
- Conscientiousness – to show that you can take responsibility for your own actions and do your job well.
- Empathy – to display your level of understanding of the large diversity of circumstances that befall your patients. A lack of empathy will cause a person to not treat patients with the level of care they deserve.
- Leadership – to show that you can set goals, delegate effectively, and help others develop their skills.
- Managing risk and solving problems – to show that you are level-headed when problems arise and you know how to deal with them effectively.
- Flexibility – to show that you can adapt to the pressures and challenges of working as a doctor.
What questions are asked in medical interviews?
There are a wide variety of questions that you could be asked in your medical school interview.
Your questions could be about you as a person, your motivation to study Medicine, how prepared you are for the challenges of becoming a doctor, as well as the healthcare industry in general.
So, what questions are asked in medical interviews?
Here are a few examples:
Why Study Medicine?
- Why do you want to become a doctor?
- Why Medicine, and not Veterinary Sciences, Dentistry, Nursing or Pharmacy?
- What is it about the human body that fascinates you?
- Which field of Medicine do you want to specialise in? Why?
- What do you hope to achieve with a degree in Medicine?
- How prepared are you for the workload involved in a Medicine degree programme?
- What aspects of this Medicine programme do you find exciting?
- What are you looking forward to most about becoming a doctor?
What personal attributes and skills do you have which make you suited for a career in Medicine?
- Tell me about yourself.
- What do you think you could contribute to university life, if you were offered a place here?
- If you were a student at this university, what societies would you join?
- What relevant work experience do you have which has prepared you to study Medicine?
- What do you think makes a good doctor?
- Would you consider yourself more of a leader or a follower?
- What is your biggest strength?
- What is your biggest weakness?
- How do you cope with failure?
- How do you cope with stress?
- What extracurricular activities do you do?
- How would you handle a difficult patient?
- How would you use listening skills to care for a patient?
- What do you do to develop as a person?
- Give an example of a time you displayed leadership.
- Give an example of a time when you worked in a team and it was successful.
The healthcare industry
- What do you know about the current trends in the UK’s healthcare system? How do you stay informed on these?
- What do you think has been the most important medical advancement in the last 100 years?
- What is your view on euthanasia?
- What do you think is going to happen in the future of healthcare?
- How would you restrict the spread of an epidemic?
- What are the principles that the NHS was founded on?
- What issues come with an ageing population?
- Describe your understanding of antibiotic resistance.
- Have there been any public health campaigns that have stood out to you?
- Should tobacco products be banned?
- Is it ever appropriate to breach patient confidentiality?
- What is meant by the term ‘informed consent’?
- How accurately do you think the media portrays the role of a doctor?
Where can I get help with medical school interview preparation?
Starting from only £100, our Interview Coaching package offers advice and guidance from our expert tutors. All of our tutors are fully qualified British doctors, specialists in medical education and interviewers at their respective medical schools. This level of tutoring is not guaranteed by any competitors.
You will have access to Interview Online Courses and personalised 1-to-1 lessons with a highly qualified tutor.
You will get to work on topics such as:
- Motivation for Medicine
- Interpersonal skills
- Academic ability
- Lateral thinking
- Work experience
- NHS & Hot Topics
- Medical ethics
- GMC/ Good Medical Practice
Choose from between 1 to 20 hours of coaching, to prepare for a medical school interview and set you up for the best chances of success.
At The Future Medic, we have helped thousands of aspiring medical students successfully enter the medical schools of their choice.
Click here to book our Interview Coaching package or learn more.
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- How to prepare for your medical school Interview
- How do I Prepare for an MMI Interview?
- Dos and Donts of Medical Interview
- How to Prepare for Oxford Medicine Interview – Medical Interview UK 2023
- Best Ways to Prepare for Medicine Interview – Medical Interview UK 2023
- Medical School Interview Tutoring
About The Future Medic
We are a team of experienced GPs. We understand the challenges and pressures of applying to medical school- whether you are a home student in the UK or an international student.
That is why we coach students on every aspect of the medical school application process.
With our services, we have helped thousands of students successfully enter the medical schools of their dreams.
For a full list of our services, visit our website.
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We hope this article has helped you better understand what questions are asked in medical interviews.