Graduate Entry Medicine Interviews
As with the usual undergraduate medicine route, each institution has their own interview processes for selecting graduate entry medicine applicants. It’s advisable to thoroughly research your choice of universities, but typically you’ll be given more information regarding your university’s specific interview process once you are invited for interview.
If you’d like a better understanding of what to expect from graduate entry interviews, as well as some tips on how to prepare, keep reading!
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What Is the Graduate Entry Medicine Interview Process Like?
Some universities use a traditional panel format for graduate entry medicine interviews, where applicants interact with both clinicians and academics and answer a range of questions on different topics. This process lasts between 20 minutes and an hour and can include more than a single interview.
Alternatively, some medical schools use the multi mini interview (MMI) style, where applicants complete a series of stations (between 6-10) under observation and timed conditions. The applicants are given a few minutes to read instructions before encountering various scenarios/individuals.
See general Medical School Interview Guide>>
How Can I Prepare for My Graduate Entry Medicine Interview?
All in all, the process for graduate entry medicine interviews is very similar to that for entering the profession through the traditional route. However, depending on the interview format, you can naturally expect questions about your undergraduate degree/past profession to come up.
It’s a good idea to think about how you can use your graduate studies/past employment to demonstrate your aptitude and suitability for medicine. As a slightly older and more experienced applicant, you’ll have a ton of skills and education to draw from during this stage, so don’t be afraid to use this!
Here are some things you can do to be fully prepared for your graduate entry medicine interview:
Demonstrate Your Knowledge and Passion for Medicine
If you’re entering the medical profession through graduate entry, chances are you’re coming from a different area of study, or possibly held a long-term job in a different sector. As such, it’s crucial to demonstrate exactly why you’re seeking this career change and that you have a strong awareness of what a career in medicine is like, as well as key issues concerning doctors and the NHS. Interviewers will want to be certain that your skill-set is suited to med school, and that you’re fully aware of the challenging nature of a career in medicine and what to expect from your studies.
See key NHS Hot Topics>>
Give Evidence of Your Aptitude for Medicine
As with any job or academic interview, it’s vital to demonstrate why your personal qualities and skills make you a suitable candidate. Therefore, you should illustrate how your abilities can be connected to a career in medicine and what makes a good doctor.
Interviewers will be observing graduate entry medicine applicants in regards to aspects such as; communication, listening and team-working skills. Medical ethics is another useful thing to read up on. Overall, don’t worry about getting everything right, this stage is about making sure you have the makings of a good doctor and are suited to medical school, so try to highlight your own personal skills.
See the key qualities needed to be a good doctor here>>
Reading and Preparation
Depending on your past studies and what you’ve been up to since leaving secondary school, it might be some time since you last opened a biology book. Generally, and particularly for graduates from non-science backgrounds, it’s advisable to carry out reading from basic level science to first year university level or to even take a short preparatory course. Tip: spend some time reading on NHS Hot Topics and New Scientist, as well as anything related to current healthcare news.
See 5 Books to Read for Aspiring Medics>>
Before your graduate entry medicine interview, it might be necessary to research or approach your institution regarding work experience, to know exactly counts as ‘experience’. You should think about drawing from any past voluntary or paid work in a related sector, as well as hobbies and interests. Consider how these experiences have prepared you for a role within medicine, and what you’ve gained from this time.
Try to seek out experiences as closely related to healthcare as possible, and demonstrate how these experiences have encouraged you to pursue a career in medicine. Relevantly, try to spot any gaps in your work life, and ensure you are able to explain these.
See our tips on finding medical work experience>>
Know Where You’re Applying To
Hopefully, you’ll have conducted some research into the course and university you’re applying to, the city in general as well as the connected facilities and practices. It’s important to have some knowledge of their teaching method and how it is suited to your own learning style, so you can show you’re well prepared and truly researched the med school.
Compare medical schools with our Comparison Tool>>
|University Name ||Interview Style||Topics That Might Feature
|Barts||Assessment Centre day. ||Trained assessors observe as candidates complete tasks including a group-based task and a structured interview, and score individuals on a set of predetermined criteria.
|Birmingham ||MMI||Applicants should prepare for interviews by keeping up to date with the latest medical news and demonstrate understanding of working in the UK healthcare environment. Extracurricular activities, as well as evidence of skills such as problem solving, leadership and communication will be taken into account.
|Cambridge||MMI ||Applicants should be keen scientists, with a sound scientific understanding. They must give evidence that they can meet national guidance on what makes a good doctor.
|Cardiff||MMI||There will be nine stations,
exploring personal qualities and attributes important to developing a good doctor.
|Dundee/ St Andrews||MMI||Applicants can expect to be asked about their motivation to study medicine, relevant work experience and personal attributes, and why they have applied to ScotGEM in particular.
|Imperial (temporarily suspended for 2019 entry)||Traditional||The following qualities will be assessed:
• Motivation and realistic approach to medicine as a career
• Capacity to deal with stressful situations
• Evidence of commitment to the values of the NHS constitution
• Evidence of working as both a leader and a team member
• Ability to multitask
• Likely contribution to university life
• Communication skills and maturity of character
|King's College London ||MMI||At each station candidates meet an interviewer who asks structured questions and marks the responses to the questions independently. MMI is similar in style (but not content) to the short objective structured clinical examinations (OSCE) used in medical school assessment.
|Liverpool||MMI||The Medical Schools Council has published a statement identifying the core values, skills and attributes needed to become a doctor. This will help applicants to medical school prepare by giving them an outline of what they might be tested on.
|Newcastle||MMI||Candidates can expect situational questions about their experiences/behaviours to explore key competencies. Assessors will be looking for:
• Integrity (honesty and probity)
• Communication (skills
• Empathy and self-awareness
• Motivation and commitment
to be a doctor
• Compatibility with MBBS
• Teamwork (including
• Personal organisation
• Persistence and resilience
|Nottingham ||MMI||Candidates will be observed for communication and listening skills, understanding of professional issues like teamwork and respect for members of professions allied to medicine.
Candidates will be questioned with regards to the following themes:
• Awareness of what the role of a doctor entails
• Evidence of their interest in and commitment to healthcare
• Whether they possess the personal attributes necessary for the study and practice of medicine
• Whether they've considered the strong emphasis placed on PBL at Derby and if this suits their own approach to learning
|Oxford||Traditional||Candidates can expect more than one interview; typically two at each college, and each candidate will be interviewed at two colleges. Candidates will be assessed according to the following criteria;
• Academic ability, commitment to medicine and personal suitability for medicine
• A high level of communication skills
• Interest and ability to communicate with people of all backgrounds
• Personal integrity, stability of character, leadership potential and concern for the welfare of others
• Evidence that their values are consistent with the aims and values of the NHS
|Southampton ||Selection Day||The Selection Procedure and Policy of the Faculty of Medicine aims to:
• Select students who have the motivation to succeed in medicine
• Select students who have the academic ability to be successful in the course and thrive in their future medical careers
• Select students who have the non-academic attributes necessary to be a member of
the medical profession
|St George's ||MMI||Throughout the interview process, candidates should show that they've gained insight into medicine through relevant work/voluntary experience. They must also illustrate how their experience, both in healthcare and non-healthcare experiences are relevant to an application for medicine. Additionally, candidates should show awareness of own abilities and limitations, as well as what they've learned. They will also be observed for transferable skills, including:
• Team work and leadership
|Swansea||Selection Centre |
(A day-long event including a written assessment and 2 oral interviews.)
|The interview process will take into account the qualities needed as a doctor, as set out in ‘Good Medical Practice’, and the capacity to meet the outcomes of ‘Outcomes for Graduates’.
• Communication Skills
• Problem solving skills
• Coping with pressure
• Insight and Integrity
• Passion for medicine/resilience to succeed
|Warwick||MMI||Assessors will be observing candidates for competencies including:
• Team working
• Respect and dignity