Interview Questions?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Scooby Doo, Aug 27, 2001.

  1. Scooby Doo

    Scooby Doo IEatShavedPussyCats
    10+ Year Member

    Jul 9, 2001
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    So I am wondering how detailed the interview questions will be. For me, I have a a couple different research experiences, a few volunteer experiences, many personal life experiences, and a few jobs / teaching jobs.
    How much in detail will the interviewers delve into all these subjects? Should I expect main topic to involve why doctor and why this particular school?
    Or will they mainly focus on the personal statement? Will they leave it somewhat open in the questions? Such as "Please elaborate on one of your volunteer experiences..."
    If they wanted to know about every single one I did, it would take too long to explain it and I would probably bore them, as well as myself, to death.
    Interview feedback is good b/c it gives us "interesting questions", but having never really interviewed for very many things how many questions will the people be asking us?
    10? 20? 30?
    Will they just go down our personal statement and lists of activities and ask us about EVERY single one of them? Or will they try to look at more "unique" activities and ask us about those...
    Can any of the people who have gone through the process already or people like baylor21 who have already done one either private message me or post on this.
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  3. jdub

    jdub Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Jul 27, 2001
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    Resident [Any Field]
    i definitely am not the most experienced, but i have read plenty on types of interview questions and i have had a few interviews myself, and it comes down to where you are being interviewed and by whom.

    most interviews don't go over 30-45 minutes, and believe it or not, that doesn't leave time for a whole lot of questions.

    as many have said, i would be up to date on your research stuff, volunteer stuff, work stuff, and personal essay. also make sure that you think about and are prepared to answer some questions on current medical issures (ie stem cells, euthanasia, hmo's, etc)

    most likely, they are going to ask you why you want to be a doc, a little about a few of your experiences, probably with an emphasis on what the interviewer finds to be intersting with your app, and somekind of ethical question.

    they are not going to go over your whole application, but anything on it is fair game, so be as prepared as possible, but don't try to memorize answers. also, know why you want to go to a particular school.

    hope this helps . . . :D

    ps a book like "essays that will get you into med school" has a lot of typical questions and good suggestions on interview prep.
  4. ckent

    ckent Membership Revoked

    Jul 31, 2000
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    1 this site has all of the medschools and what questions they asked. Be sure to give back and post your own experiences on this site.
  5. Hopkins2010

    Hopkins2010 Membership Revoked

    Nov 5, 1999
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    They definitely will not ask you about every single experience, since that would take too long. What I noticed is that they WILL ask you experiences that they are interested about, in addition to perhaps some ethics/health finance/personal introspection questions.

    Ironically, in my first interview I was NOT asked why I wanted to be a doctor specifically, but several of the conversation items revolved around it in a peripheral way.

    I dont think they have enough time to ask you more than maybe 10 questions. Even that may be a little too much. For a 30-45 minute interview, if you answer more than 10 questions it makes me think that 1) either you are not elaborating enough in your responses; or 2) the interviewer is trying to push you along.

    As far as open questions vs specific details, I think they ask both types. On medically related areas, they will be more likely to ask in depth questions I think because thats their area of expertise. For something like hobbies, unless they happen to share the same hobby, the questions should be more open. My interviewers asked me general stuff about mountain biking, and I filled in specific details. But since she wasnt a mountain biker, she didnt really know any specific questions to ask.
  6. BeckyG

    BeckyG Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Jun 5, 2001
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    Hi Scooby,

    There are a couple of things I would add to what others have said. First, the "type" of interview determines what will be asked of you. If it is an "open-file" interview (e.g., the interviewer has your entire application to read and refer to), anything in your written documents is fair game for them to ask about -- interviewers usually will use some of this info to ask you questions. If it is a "closed-file" interview, they do not know anything about you -- so, they will ask more vague questions to get a sense of who you are and then steer the conversation based on how you respond or on other "issues" they want to cover. Some schools, like Univ. of Vermont, have a set of six questions that must be asked -- the remainder of the interview is up to the interviewer(s).

    The second thing I would say is that they can only ask you in-depth personal questions IF YOU supply them with the initial information. Translation -- unless you want to talk about a particular issue or it is on your application (in an open-file interview), they cannot ask you about it. Another way of saying it is that only the information you supply them is "fair game" -- they cannot go "fishing" for other information. Keep that in mind as you formulate your answers.

    As everyone else has said, make sure you know your application materials and experiences, know why you want to attend the school, why you are a good fit for the school, why you want to be a doc and understand the "climate" of medical education and practice these days (e.g., managed care, problems encountered by physicians, ethical issues). Also, as baylor21 mentioned, you should be an active participant in the conversation (i.e., do not give one or two word answers to questions -- explain things well and give depth to your responses), be enthusiastic, REMAIN POSITIVE in all of your responses, and show interest in your interviewer's questions and comments.

    Hope this is helpful. Good luck!!

    -- Becky

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