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Oxbridge Medicine Interview Questions

Below is a selection of Medical School interview questions you may be asked in an Oxbridge Medicine interview.

The answer guides have been put together by medics who have successfully navigated an Oxbridge Medicine interview.

Remember, though, that an interview is about an individual, so there are no hard and fast rules. The answer guides are only examples and are not exhaustive. They should be used to stimulate your thinking — not repeated verbatim at your interview.

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Oxbridge Medicine Interview: General Advice

The Oxbridge Medicine interview is very different to other medical school interviews. They won’t spend too much time asking you the questions that most other medical schools focus on (for example, ‘Why Oxford/Cambridge?’ or ‘Why Medicine?’). Instead, they are interested in how you think and how you approach problems, and especially how you cope with not knowing the answer immediately. Focus on logical thinking, justifying your thoughts and adapting your ideas based on the discussion in the Oxbridge Medicine interview.

Additionally, the Oxbridge course has a heavy focus on research and an overall aim to produce academic doctors. For that reason, they want people who are interested in learning about science beyond the minimal requirements required to be a doctor.

The best advice for an Oxbridge Medicine Interview is to talk aloud – even if you feel it seems stupid, say it! Never answer ‘I don’t know’ – it completely shuts down discussion and gives the impression that you can’t tackle a problem on the spot. The interview is primarily a time for the tutors interviewing you to see how you would cope with the Oxbridge tutorial system. The interviewers are often those who will be spending an hour or more with you in weekly small group tutorials, so they are looking for people who will engage with and add to the group discussion.

What do you think makes a good doctor?

Answer guide:

Common mistakes:

Talk to me about an area of medicine or medical research that you find interesting.

Answer guide:

Common mistakes:

Look at this genetic tree and tell me about it.

Answer guide:

Learn answer techniques at our Interview Course

How do vaccines work?

Answer guide:

Common mistakes:

What’s the concentration of water?

Answer guide:

Common mistakes:

What are the ethical implications of boxing?

Answer guide:

Common mistakes:

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*According to an article in the Journal of Medical Regulation, A Census of Actively Licensed Physicians in the United States, 2016, vol. 103. no 2.

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