Following on from last week’s advice about preparing a strong application to study medicine at university, I thought a few tips on preparing for the interview might be useful.
Firstly research the format the interview will take as each university is different. Some have multi mini interviews whilst others take a more traditional panel approach. You may also have to join in group discussions. Practise handling all these scenarios to ensure you have the right skills to sell yourself whatever the format. Body language is important.
Ensure your background knowledge of the course is comprehensive. You will not only need to come across as having a passion for medicine and the motivation to work hard to stay the course, but also that you are completely in the picture as to the content of the course and how the learning is delivered-traditional or more problem based learning.
Showing that you have experience of assimilating with people from all walks of life and cultures with empathy and sensitivity is important. Be ready to share examples of how you have used communication and people skills to handle difficult situations, where others were angry or upset, for example as a result of bad news.
Ethics are critical to the medical profession. You will need to demonstrate that you have balanced opinions, can construct a logical argument, are open to cultural sensitivities and have an in-depth understanding of ethical principles. Your knowledge of current affairs will come into play here.
The structure and challenges of the NHS should be a subject on which you can show an in-depth knowledge. Medicine is a career and not a job. You will need to show that you understand the general direction of travel of UK healthcare and are committed to making a life-long contribution.
Learn to identify types of question so you can structure your answer. Does the question require facts and knowledge or the construction of a balanced argument or opinion? Structure your answer accordingly. In the introduction turn around and rephrase the question to give thinking time eg “There are many reasons that I want to study medicine ….. “ Then create an argument by grouping positives and negatives together if possible and finally summarise and reach a conclusion. Do not be afraid to express personal opinion and be prepared to defend it!
Deliver balanced but focussed responses and arguments.
If you need assistance to prepare your application for medicine or to prepare for the interview, our team of expert consultants are here to help. Give Sasha Wellings a call to discuss your individual ambitions so she can let you know how she and her team of friendly experts will support and advise you in achieving them. You can reach her by phoning +44 (0)7769 686961
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