How To Stand Out at a Medical School InterviewJune 19, 2013
If you’ve received a letter inviting you to a medical school interview – Congratulations!
Being asked to come in for an interview is a major step in being accepted to any medical school. It means they are impressed with your credentials and are interested in having you as a student in their school. There’s just one more step you need to go through before your application is confirmed and that is the personal interview. On paper, the medical school recruiters can see that you have potential. Now they want to meet you in person and see whether you actually fit the bill.
From the medical school’s perspective, the interview is meant to identify those students who show the most aptitude for that particular program. In most medical schools, places are limited and the school authorities would like to make sure that that they are making the right choice and not wasting a place.
From your perspective, this is your opportunity to shine. Your profile on paper was good enough to get you this far. Now you have the opportunity to show the school board that you have what it takes to make it in this profession.
While the way you dress is not the ultimate criteria, it could help swing the interview if the interviewers have to make a tough choice. Besides, nobody likes a dishevelled doctor. Dressing smartly at the interview will give the interviewers the subtle message that you are serious about choosing this profession.
Prepare For the Interview
An interview is not for judging your academic proficiency. The interviewers already know you are brilliant and that’s why they extended you an interview invitation. What they now want to know is how passionate you are about becoming a doctor. Expect to be asked questions like these:
· What is your reason for wanting to become a doctor?
· Do you think you’d make a good doctor? Why?
· What do you think the qualities that make a good doctor are?
· What exposure have you had in the medical field?
· What do you like most about the thought of being a doctor and what do you like least?
How you answer these questions will play a huge role in influencing the interviewers into accepting or rejecting your application. Do you know what you are going to say? If you have not given these questions a thought, you will find it almost impossible to answer them on the spot. Think about exactly why you chose this profession. Some time spent introspecting will help you find the right answers not just for the interview, but yourself too. The important thing is to be honest. Whether they say anything to you or not, interviewers have a knack of seeing through lies and can easily spot when you are trying to convince them of something that isn’t true.
Research The School
It won’t hurt to spend some time doing a bit of research about the school. You should be able to put forth how the strengths of that particular school co-relate to your own interests and strengths. Check the school’s web site for detailed information or speak with people who already study there.
Very importantly, re-read your application and cover letter before you go for the interview so that you do not refute what you have written. In non-blind interviews you may be asked about things that have been mentioned in your secondary essays. Re-reading and remembering what you have written there will help you sound confident and sway the interviewer’s votes in your favour.