The interview is a great opportunity for medical schools and applicants both. It allows candidates to show their personal traits necessary for becoming a responsible and competent physician. For medical schools, the interview serves as a valuable recruitment tool that helps the admissions committee to learn about an applicant and help the faculty decide whether the applicant is right for their institution.
Applicants can show their intellectual ability and academic record to the admissions committee in the interview and help them make a well-informed decision about their future. During the interview, applicants can show their essential character traits such as integrity, empathy, reliability, creativity, commitment to medicine as a career, interpersonal skills, and other characteristics that will make them the best candidate for medical school.
Many applicants think that interview prep is pointless. However, it is exactly not the case. You are being evaluated in the interview, so it is important to be prepared to respond to all kinds of questions. Get ready to answer questions that might be unrelated to the study of the medicine, discuss your motivation for pursuing a career in medicine and any other activities that are relevant to your future goals.
If you are invited for an interview, here are some medical school interview preparation tips that you should follow to get selected.
- Hone your Interview Skills
When it comes to preparing for a medical school interview, it is important to improve your interview skills by practicing answering questions. There are a number of questions that are expected in a medical school interview; practicing these questions can better prepare you to answer questions in a thoughtful and enthusiastic manner.
Though no one can provide you with all the questions you will be asked in an interview, there are some common interview questions that you could ask. For example, your academic background, extracurricular activities, research experience, shadowing experience, the reason for becoming a physician and your future goals. So, practice crafting substantial responses to these questions, along with your personal, memorable examples.
- Convince the Admissions Committees
If you want to fulfill the dream of becoming a doctor, then you have to get into a top medical school. It will only be possible when you convince the admissions committees that you are the right candidate for the school. You need to show your value and the ability to contribute to the betterment of the medical field and how you can make a difference in patients’ life. Tell the admission officer how you will achieve your personal and career goals if you get selected.
- Research Different Interview Formats
It is advised to know the school’s interview format before appearing walking into. There are different interview formats, such as in-person one-on-one interviews, multiple mini interviews (MMI), video interviews, and more. When you know the type of interview, it will make it easier for you to prepare for it. It is also a great idea to learn about the school so that you can craft answers that are more appropriate. Visit a school’s website to learn about the faculty, specialties, MD programs, research programs, and other important details that matter most to you. If possible, tour the campus and talk to medical students who are currently studying in that school.
- Stay Confident, Speak Clearly
Some medical officers ask some tricky questions to check how well you can perform under stressful conditions. They deliberately ask questions about controversial topics and deny everything you say to check your patience level. If you face this situation, try to relax first. Admission officers understand that you can’t answer every question immediately, but they want a considered, smart response from you. Take your time to compile your thoughts and formulate the answer rather than staying silent. If you didn’t understand the question, request the interviewer to clearly explain the question and then come up with a well-conceived response.
- Don’t Go into Details
Your answer length solely depends on the type of question and format of the medical school application interview. If the interviewer asks why you have chosen the field of medicine, then you have to come up with a detailed answer with personal examples to show them how much you are compassionate about your career. Make sure you conclude your answer in three to five points, don’t try to add an additional story if it doesn’t make sense.
- Be Pleasant
Don’t forget that admission officers silently notice your attitude and body language during the entire interview. So, it is important to stay pleasant to create a positive first impression. During the interview, try to create an impression that you have worked hard to improve your medical school candidacy.
Remember, you are here because of your outstanding academic performance and research experience. You can differentiate yourself from other applicants by describing your uniqueness, qualities, and experience. The interview is your chance to tell the interviewer about your achievements, experience, and facts of your medical school application. You will be quickly noticed by the admissions committees if you stay confident and tell your unique selling points.
These are a few medical school interview preparation tips that will help you to present yourself in the most logical manner. With the right preparation, you can use your personal power, highlight your plus points, and respond to all kinds of questions.