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UK Medical School Interviews

Preparing for your medical school interview

Spaces at UK medical schools are limited, and entry is often very competitive. That is why medical schools in the UK will invite applicants for interviews before offering them a place to better understand the students they are taking on.

During an interview at a UK medical school, students will be questioned on:

  • Medicine knowledge
  • Understanding the core qualities of a doctor
  • Ability to work in a team and under stress
  • Knowledge of the institute's modules/course
  • Motivation and realistic approach to medicine as a career
  • Ability to multitask and communication skills

Types of Medical School Interview

MMI Medicine Interview

Multiple-mini interviews (MMI) are an increasingly common form of interview used at many UK medical schools. Instead of the traditional interview format in front of a panel, students are required to test their ability through a series of ethical and problem-solving scenarios.

  • The entire process will last no longer than two hours
  • There can be up to ten MMI, with each assessment lasting no longer than ten minutes
  • Your personal statement can be factored into the interview
  • MMI seeks to examine empathy, problem-solving, moral reasons and communication
  • It can also involve teamwork with fellow applicants

Study Medicine at a UK University

Traditional Medicine Interview

MMI interviews are gradually pushing out traditional medicine interviews but are still popular when assessing candidates at many medical schools. Common traditional interview questions and areas of interest can include:

- Why do you want to study Medicine? The panel will be looking at what motivates you, and this question can speak volumes about you as a person and candidate. Answer concisely and clearly, avoiding clichés.

- Area of medicine you are interested in. There are many possible areas a medicine graduate can move into, so do not be afraid if you are unsure which part you wish to specialise in. However, Knowing what you wish to pursue is important, and talking confidently with knowledge on these areas will help immensely.

- Medical industry news and current events. Medicine is an ever changing field, so ensure you are fully up to date on the latest news. The National Health Service, the publicly funded health service of the UK, is rarely out of the news and useful resources include the NHS website, as well as Guardian HealthBBC Health and Science Daily.

- What appeals about the course and medical school. Attend any Open Days the medical school/university run, and learn more about the history of the course and any notable alumni. Think about your career goals and how they fit into the medicine programme you wish to study.

- Work experience. For most medical schools, work experience is an absolute must for any aspiring student to have completed. Explain why your work experience was useful and how it shaped your outlook on wanting to work in medicine. Use examples to show why you are worthy of a place on their medicine programme.

Communication and working with others. Use examples from work experience or prior study practice of how you have communicated clearly and effectively to colleagues or project members. Remember to listen attentively, speak calmly and confidently, and maintain eye contact throughout, as these are all traits of a good communicator, which is vital in medicine.

- Make an impression. Usual interview etiquette also applies, so make your impression with the panel count. Dress smartly, use positive body language, be polite, and prepare a few questions at the end, specifically related to the course or university.

Study Medicine in the UK

Your medical school interview can be a daunting prospect, but the SI-UK Medicine Service can fully prepare you for it with interview practice from a doctor who sits on the admissions panel of a London medical school. Arrange a free consultation with SI-UK to learn more.

Breckett Front  My consultant was very helpful and motivating. She helped me every step of the way, even when the deadline was so close. I feel I could not have done it without her. I'd highly recommend this service to any and all of my many friends interested.  Breckett Front

Brishti Basu Biosciences at Coventry University