interview tips

Tips for Medical School Interview

3/04/2014,37 Comments

I interviewed by boyfriend about his med school interview experience and I'm sharing it with you guys. Photo from nadinemuller.

I have been supporting my boyfriend's dream to become a medical doctor so I know how anxious he got when he thought that the interview part was coming next. Anxious and yet excited. :)

From my personal perception, interview is the most critical point in any application - be it a job interview or a school interview. Why? Because you must be good in marketing yourself.

You must think, at least, that they are the buyers and you are the product and advertise yourself as the best product that they could possibly get so that they'd "buy" you and you'd qualify to whatever it is that you're applying for.

Related: Tips and Techniques for Future NMAT Takers


So here we go with the transcribed version of my interview with my boyfriend about his interview experience. LOL.

The interview is one of the most (if not the most) critical in the application process. Image from resumetarget.

After getting your desired NMAT percentile score, your next problem would be applying for Med schools.‏ I think majority would apply to the schools that they have chosen on their NMAT application.‏

As for me, my choices were: University of the Philippines College of Medicine (UP), Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM) and Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health (ASMPH).‏

How did you prepare for the interview?‏

The interview part really pressured me because I find my English really rusty during those times. Thus I took the initiative of looking for some tips and advice on YouTube about medical interviews.‏ Here are the things that I learned before and during the interview.

Please be reminded that all the things that I'll be sharing here are based from my personal experience.‏

1. Dress appropriately.‏

I suggest that you wear a semi-formal attire such as long sleeves, ties, slacks and black shoes. For the girls, wear your semi-formal or business attire (you know what they are), light make up and shoes with heels of at least 1.5 inches. Please bear in mind that it's not a fashion show so conceal what you must. Also, there are some institutions that rate your attire. :)

Remember: YOU'RE GONNA SELL YOURSELF to the institution. Bear in mind that you are a product so you should be presentable.‏

For the boys, look as neat as you can. Therefore, shave and visit the barber shop/parlor if you must. :)

2. Come on time or earlier than the scheduled time.‏

Keep in mind that you're aspiring to be a physician. Time is of great importance.‏ It's also a good way to gain a nice first impression.‏

3. Look Smart and maintain a good posture.

Avoid slouching.‏ This portrays decency. Sometimes, your posture and mannerisms spell what kind of person you are.‏

Med schools are looking for smart-looking individuals. Walk like you have an actual purpose. Have a purposeful gait.

Related: Tips and Techniques for Future NMAT Takers


4. Know thyself.‏

Have a good grasp of what kind of person you are because most interview questions revolve around self-awareness.‏ They're gonna look into your personality.‏

This can also ensure consistency in your answers. Thus, if you are inventing things during your interview, I don't think you're gonna get away with it. So honesty is the best policy.‏

Trust me, it will be one of the best (if not the best) weapon that you can bring with you during the interview.‏

5. Relax.‏

You're probably the 20th person who's gonna be interviewed so don't think of yourself as someone of utmost importance.‏ Try to be conversational.

6. Know thy thesis.

Trust me, you're gonna need this. :)

7. Follow-up your interview schedule.‏

You have to show them that you are determined to get into their medical school.‏ There are circumstances that may hinder them from contacting you for your interview schedule so you must take the initiative.‏

8. Be consistent with your answers.

There is no right or wrong answer so you have to be consistent. Stick to your answer, defend it, explain, elaborate and stand up for it - because who they're looking for is someone who is decisive and knows what he/she is getting into.

9. Practice common interview questions.‏

This is essential so that you won't be caught off guard.‏ It can also allay some of your anxiety, knowing that you already have a nice answer (or punchline) for a certain question.

10. Do's and Don'ts

  • Sit straight
  • Avoid crossing your legs and arms
  • Do away (if you can) with your twitchy mannerisms
  • Maintain eye contact
  • Keep your hands separated (so that you can openly express yourself using your hand gestures)
  • Lean forward to show interest but don't put your hand/s on the table.
  • Avoid looking up (it will look as if you've memorized your answers)‏
  • Rather, look down. It appears more thoughtful.‏
  • Smile because they are also looking for people who are comfortable speaking with strangers - a common yet important trait that physicians should possess.‏
  • Show passion when answering questions regarding the medical profession. They're not looking for over-confident people; they are looking for compassionate people.
  • Don't show an over-flowing confidence during the interview. They might find it cocky.‏
  • Be familiar with what you've put in your application form.‏ They might find some loopholes if you're inconsistent with your answers.
  • Download apps with sample interview questions and answers. Generic questions are also being asked.

Some more tips that you need to know before the interview. Image from ucas.

Interview is a face-to-face encounter, so they'd (the interviewer/s) see everything in you.

They'd see the way you carry yourself, the way you think or how long it takes you to come up with a decision, the way you respond when you're getting pressed on, the way you walk, the aura you have, the kind of conversation atmosphere that you evoke, everything.

Well all I'm trying to say is that the interview portion is not to be taken for granted. :)

Thanks for reading! I hope you learned something from this post. Good luck with your interview! :)

Related: Tips and Techniques for Future NMAT Takers

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