Admittance Interviews: Critical for Medical School Admissions

As you know, doing well in your med school admittance interviews dramatically increases your chances of getting into the school of your choice.  Many students make the mistake of failing to prepare for these interviews—either because they don’t realize how important preparation is, or because they don’t think there is anything they can do to increase their chances of success.  Both notions are incorrect—the reality is that effective preparation and planning can improve your performance substantially.  Below are three key principles to keep in mind as you prepare for your admittance interviews:

1) Learn everything you can about the school and your interviewer. You can count on being asked several generic questions relating to the school you are applying to—for instance, “why do you want to attend our university?”  But to truly impress your interviewer, go beyond these basics.  Spend time researching the school, browsing their website, and reading their informational brochures.  If you know who you’ll be interviewing with, spend time researching their background.  Learn about their career and read papers they have published.  Your preparation and attention to detail is guaranteed to impress!

2) Tell your story. You will be asked many basic questions, about your motivation to become a doctor, your childhood, your dreams, etc.  Take the time to think through your answers to these questions, and think about the story you will be telling.  Don’t think of each question as separate from all the rest—think of the entire interview as your chance to tell your story.  What makes you unique?  Why are you a great candidate for admission?  Why should the interviewer believe in you?

3) Get the details right. All of your preparation can be for naught if you show up an hour late for the interview.  Make absolutely sure you know where you are going.  Plan to arrive very early—allow enough time to account for unexpected traffic, car problems, or other scenarios.  Dress appropriately.  Be polite.  Thank each interviewer… and for extra impact, send a thank you note when you get home.

Admittance interviews are your best chance to make a strong case for yourself.  By thoroughly preparing and planning for every detail, you can walk into your interview confident—and you can be sure that you’ll make a great impression.

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