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What is the most common med school interview question?

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James’s Answer

hi vanisha, i graduated medical school in 1993 and have been a family physician in texas and alaska for 20+ years.

i think i interviewed at 3 texas schools and cancelled some others once i received my admission letter from my first choice.

hands down the #1 question is something like, "Why do you want to be a doctor?"

if you don't have a well thought out and polished answer for that question then you're headed for failure.

sure, there are countless other potential questions. in fact, one of my interviews went easily over an hour when i commented on some books on his shelf and we started talking about books we had each read. i'm sure the interviewer hadn't planned for that. but i remember getting my best review from that interviewer.

i think more than anything they're looking for applicants who are confident in themselves and seem extremely comfortable with the path they've chosen.

you see, interviews are a make-it-or-break situation. you can take every required course. you can graduate top of your class. you can pass the MCAT with flying colors. but you still might not make it to med school if you flop in the interviews. so the pressure can be enormous.

i chatted with a lot of other applicants as we waited to be called in for our interviews and recall how almost every one of them was a nervous wreck. i think that's why schools still do interviews - they get to see how you perform under pressure. and there's probably some validity to that approach as doctors need to think clearly in high-pressure situations.

so my advice is to prepare for questions just like the previous respondent advised. then go into your interviews knowing that these questions are a mere formality on the way to your medical school admission. i'm not telling you to bring attitude. i'm saying "be confident."

good luck!
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Paula-Ann’s Answer

Hi Vanisha,

A lot of aspiring medical school students use the Princeton Review to prepare for medical school interviews, they have complied a very comprehensive list of the type of questions that medical school interviewers use to learn more about the applicant.

According to PR, medical schools have very common categories of questions they employ, which include questions about your education (major, achievements, work experiences, future goals) and about your character and personality (strengths and weaknesses, empathy/compassion skills, personal definition of success).

Medical school interviewers also ask medicine-related questions (views/knowledge on current healthcare, what excites you about the field), society-related questions (opinion on current events/social problems, opinions of universal healthcare), ethics-related questions (current or past moral dilemmas, opinions on current medical controversies), diversity-related questions (how has your identity shaped your life/experiences), and motivation-related questions (plans if not accepted, personal passions).

I have attached the link below, it is very informational.
https://www.princetonreview.com/med-school-advice/medical-school-interview-questions

Good luck with everything!
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Estelle’s Answer

Hey Vanisha, asking this question is an indicator that you are already on the right track. One of the most important things going into an interview to be honest with yourself and with the interviewer. To do this effectively, it's a good idea to start asking yourself why you want to go to medical school and also why you want to go to *this* medical school. By that, I mean that you should go into every medical school with an idea of what makes that medical special and particularly enticing to you. It could be that many of its graduates go on to work in internal medicine (if you are interested in that) or that the medical school is known for research. So, besides questions like "what are you strengths and weaknesses", "why did you choose your undergraduate major and how has it shaped the way you would like to practice medicine", or "what are a physician's responsibilities to society", you should be asking yourself why you want to go to the medical school you are interviewing in the first place. Ask yourself these questions early and let them shape the way that you see your medical school experience going, and that will take you very far!
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