If you’ve been invited to a Medical School interview at Barts, make sure you read this guide to the common Medicine interview questions you can expect.

Barts (Queen Mary) Medical Interviews

Barts and The London Medical School offers a 5-year Undergraduate Medicine degree and an accelerated 4-year Graduate degree.

Interviews at Barts typically occur between January and March.

Those who are interviewed at Barts must have met the shortlisting criteria:

  • Met the UCAS application deadline
  • Achieved or predicted the minimum entry requirements (undergraduate – A*AA with Biology or Chemistry and at least one other science subject; graduate – 2:1 degree with additional A-Level requirements depending on your degree)
  • Have sat the UCAT in the year of application and scored within the third decile or above

Following this, candidates are selected for interview based on a weighted score that ranks the candidates.

For the undergraduate course, scores are calculated 50:50 from UCAT score and UCAS tariff. For graduate entry, scores are calculated 50:50 from UCAT score and degree classification (1st class or 2:1). As such, GEM candidates with a 1st class degree (or predicted 1st class) are at a significant advantage in terms of interview selection.

In 2023, Barts interviewed 1,207 candidates out of over 2,500 applicants for the undergraduate course. Approximately 646 candidates were made an offer.

In 2023, Barts interviewed 131 candidates out of 1,036 applicants for the graduate course. Approximately 40 candidates were made an offer.

Detailed information on admission statistics for previous application cycles, including home and overseas students, can be found here.


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How is Barts (Queen Mary) Interviewing For 2024 Entry Medicine?

Barts uses panel interviews for its undergraduate and graduate courses. Typically, the panel will comprise of two members of clinical or senior academic staff, a medical student and sometimes a lay selector.

The interview lasts 20 minutes and is comprised of two parts. During the first 10 minutes, you will be asked questions on an article sent to you prior to the interview. During the second 10 minutes, the panel will conduct a more traditional medical interview.

Barts has confirmed interviews for the 2024 cycle will be online.

Article Component of Barts Interview

An important distinction between the two course interviews is that undergraduate candidates receive the article a week prior to interview, whereas graduate candidates receive it only 24 hours beforehand, and thus are under more time pressure.

The article will likely be about a current ‘hot topic’ within the NHS or wider scientific field, but will not require any sophisticated medical understanding.

To prepare for this component, read through the article and ensure you understand all of it. Find bits that interest you or that you think are important in the article and do some background reading. Make notes on these, as you may wish to reference these during your interview.

When you answer questions on it, try to demonstrate qualities and values in yourself that would make you a desirable candidate for Barts. For example, try to show a balance in arguments and bring in evidence to support your opinions.

Part 2 of Barts Interview

The second 10 minutes of the interview comprises more traditional Medical School interview questions.

Barts aims to evaluate the following qualities via its interviews:

  • Motivation and the reality of a career in Medicine
  • Initiative, resilience and maturity
  • Teamwork
  • Organisation and problem-solving abilities
  • Contribution to university life
  • Communication skills

In your answers, try to demonstrate to the panel that you have these qualities by bringing in your personal experiences and reflection upon them.


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Common Medicine Interview Question Topics at Barts

The interviewers may ask questions on the following topics:

Motivation for Studying Medicine

  • Why do you want to study Medicine?
  • What are the disadvantages of studying Medicine?
  • How will you cope with the high workload at Medical School?
  • What speciality are you interested in?

Medical Ethics

  • Do you think the NHS should fund treatment for smokers?
  • Should vaccination of children be mandatory?

Work Experience

  • What work experience have you had in the past?
  • What have you learned from your work experience that will make you a good Doctor?
  • What have you done to prepare for Medicine?

Motivation for Studying at Barts

  • Why do you want to come to Barts?
  • What will you contribute to university life at Barts?

Attributes and Qualities

  • How would you deal with death as a Doctor?
  • Tell me about an experience when you had to demonstrate teamwork skills.
  • What makes a good team?
  • How do you want your patients to perceive you?

Tips for Answering Barts (Queen Mary) Interview Questions

Barts likes to know why you want to attend Barts in particular. What is it about the Medical School that you like? Aspects of teaching? The location?

Reflect on these aspects to enable you to give an original and genuine answer to this question. Make sure you research the local area (East End and Whitechapel). What diseases are prevalent in the area? Why would the location be beneficial to you in your medical learning?

Demonstrating a work-life balance is a key quality that Medical Schools now seek. Show how you will be able to cope with the high amount of work during the course and the high stress in the career. What do you do for stress relief? Any hobbies or sports?

Also consider researching clubs and societies that Barts offers, and reference these in your interview. This shows that you have done your research and that you are likely to participate in wider university life.

Where possible, bring in examples from your personal experiences (whether it be work experience or extracurricular). Instead of stating that you have good communication skills, provide evidence and examples of your communication skills and demonstrate reflection on these experiences.

Note that although Barts does not use the Personal Statement as part of its selection criteria, it may come up in the interview – so be prepared to answer any questions regarding your Personal Statement.

How Are Interviews At Barts Assessed?

Barts scores candidates on a scale of 1 (reject) to 5 (outstanding) on four measures:

  • Intellectual ability
  • Evidence of commitment and interest (including work experience) and awareness of the realities of Medicine
  • Evidence of teamwork and leadership skills
  • Communication skills and empathic traits

Scores for the above four measures are combined to provide an overall score, provided by each interviewer independently.


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