I'm a bad interviewer - got 2 coming up in a month - help!

Jul 23, 2017
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Pre-Medical
I received three interviews last year. One was an MMI resulting in a reject, and two were traditional and resulted in wait-lists at low-yield schools. I've improved a lot of things on my app from last time. Much better essays, new volunteering, and going D.O... but I'm sure my interviewing skills had something to do with it. I know I'm fairly shy and have trouble opening up to people, but I've never been told I behave inappropriately. I thought I did pretty well at both of the wait-list schools: all smiles, compelling reasons to go there, didn't stumble over "why I wanna be a doctor."

Fast-forward I've got interviews coming up at RowanSOM and LECOM.

I'm in kind of a late-night panic and feeling like I've already got no shot and will bomb them. Does anyone have any advice on how to improve traditional interviewing performance in such a short time?
 
Jul 12, 2017
103
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Pre-Medical
I know this is cliche, but be yourself. Of my 2 interviews, I've found they were all conversations rather than interrogations. So talk like normal and know your experiences, and have big 5 that can be used for multiple questions. But don't have answers rehearsed AT ALL except for why doctor.
Though my thought is that you're coming off as very monotone, thats something you can and should practice. Not with interviews, but when talking to anyone in general. It'll come off as weird in the beginning, but try varying your tones in normal conversations. That way, you'll engage your interviewers a lot better. Just look up "how to stop talking monotone." Might be a world of difference, and is honestly more important than what you say.
 
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latinclubimperatus

First Aid is life
5+ Year Member
Jul 7, 2014
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I received three interviews last year. One was an MMI resulting in a reject, and two were traditional and resulted in wait-lists at low-yield schools. I've improved a lot of things on my app from last time. Much better essays, new volunteering, and going D.O... but I'm sure my interviewing skills had something to do with it. I know I'm fairly shy and have trouble opening up to people, but I've never been told I behave inappropriately. I thought I did pretty well at both of the wait-list schools: all smiles, compelling reasons to go there, didn't stumble over "why I wanna be a doctor."

Fast-forward I've got interviews coming up at RowanSOM and LECOM.

I'm in kind of a late-night panic and feeling like I've already got no shot and will bomb them. Does anyone have any advice on how to improve traditional interviewing performance in such a short time?
PM me.
 
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lalalaaaaaa

7+ Year Member
Sep 29, 2011
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I'm in kind of a late-night panic and feeling like I've already got no shot and will bomb them. Does anyone have any advice on how to improve traditional interviewing performance in such a short time?
-Be humble about being a reapplicant if it comes up. Focus on how you have improved through your experiences and how you've grown as a person. "I'm now more mature becuase xyz." Remember that they know you are a reapp and like you enough to offer you an interview. A good answer that shows maturity and growth here can be a game changer and should be a slam dunk because you have prepared an epic response.
-Have stories ready to go for clinical experience. Talk with some amount of passion about a clinical interaction.
-Try to have fun with it.
-Do research about the schools!!! Have some things that you are interested in and be able to relate your previous experiences to whatever those things are. "I've worked a lot with breast cancer research and I see you have a breast cancer fundraiser and I really think that's a good opportunity to bring my experiences to your school." I've interviewed applicants that clearly have done minimal homework on the school and are not interested in going to my school and that reflects poorly on them. Be stoked about the school, the city, the curriculum. Don't go overboard, but don't be flat.
-You're going to Rowan in Camden... talk about your interest in living in an urban city or something like that. If you say you want to be a rural kansas doc that's cool, but might not make you the best fit there (I'm just assuming about Rowan, you need to find out why you fit at any school).
-You said it yourself, you've improved a lot. Let that give you confidence that you are a stronger applicant and go in with a confident attitude.
-Sorry this is a bunch of random stuff haha

Good luck!
 

sss1219

2+ Year Member
Nov 18, 2015
756
886
To prepare for mine, I made a long list of questions to practice based on the school interview feedback page on sdn. From there, I typed out a small blurb for each and memorized my answer. However, I found that really practicing them in person and making the response muscle memory instead of trying to recall brought out more genuineness in how I responded. I practiced my list maybe 6-7 times with my family until I was comfortable in making my responses seem somewhat conversational even though they were entirely memorized. During the actual thing, this really helped me because once I got into the groove of things through some of these recited answers, the conversation became free-flowing.

The hardest part for me was working on body language. Learning to sit with good posture, work my hands (hardly use my hands when I talk), and especially not look at the ceiling while I think took a good bit of practice.
 

mtglover1991

2+ Year Member
Feb 15, 2017
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Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
Honestly I would get a list of frequently asked medical school interview questions (I'm sure you could find that somewhere) and I would answer them, in person, with five or so different people asking the question. People that are your age, maybe younger depending on how old you are, and older/professionals. It is important that you are comfortable answering questions in a conversational tone. Have the people that you're talking with critique your length of phrasing, body language, and anything else that they notice.
 

NightWindDriftr

7+ Year Member
Nov 5, 2010
30
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Does anyone have any advice on how to improve traditional interviewing performance in such a short time?
Have someone do some background research on interviews (in general) and have that person interview you. Record the session. Find and work on areas where your interaction feel awkward, stilted, or inappropriate. It'll be worth every moment of cringe.
 
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