The health professions school interview
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The Health Professions School Interview. SC 201: Fall, 2013. “ The reward goes not to him with the greatest ability, but to him with the greatest determination. ” -Voltaire. Factors Behind the Admissions Process.

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The health professions school interview

The Health Professions School Interview

SC 201: Fall, 2013

“The reward goes not to him with the greatest ability, but to him with the greatest determination.”

-Voltaire


Factors behind the admissions process

Factors Behind the Admissions Process

GPA and test scores are still very important – You are intellectually qualified!

Once you have been chosen for an interview, the school is then looking for the rest of the picture of you:

  • Can you handle stress?

  • Can you handle long hours?

  • Are you dedicated to the field above all?

  • What type of practitioner will you be?

  • Empathy

  • Selflessness

    Most admissions committees now take this holistic approach to selection 


Factors behind the admissions process1

Factors Behind the Admissions Process

Admissions committees are also dedicated towards their needs!

  • Do you fit in with their mission?

  • Class diversity

    • Increases student understanding of and compassion for a wide variety of individuals.

    • Includes diverse ethnicities, life experiences, geographic backgrounds, and approaches to problem solving

  • They need to understand why a student believes he or she is a good fit for that institution


Factors behind the admissions process2

Factors Behind the Admissions Process

Admissions committees are also competing for you!

  • If you made the interview, other schools may be interested as well:

    • Sell yourself because the school is trying to sell itself to you!

  • The people who interview you will be the people to speak up for you during the admissions committee so show your best face.


Factors behind the admissions process3

Factors Behind the Admissions Process

Admissions committees are also competing for you!

  • If you made the interview, other schools may be interested as well:

    • Sell yourself because the school is trying to sell itself to you!

  • The people who interview you will be the people to speak up for you during the admissions committee so show your best face.


Styles of interviews

Styles of Interviews

Structures

  • Individual, or one on one interview

  • Panel: several interviewers at once

  • Multiple Mini Interview (MMI)

Types

  • “Blind”: they have not seen any other part of your application

  • “Partial blind”, usually have seen everything but your scores

  • “Open”, up to the interviewer whether they have read your application

    So you many get questions that sound like they know nothing about you, or quite a bit…


Preparation for the interview

Preparation for the Interview

This is about youand a serious investment in a demanding and life encompassing career.

Don’t be someone else you think would get into the health professions school.


Preparation for the interview1

Preparation for the Interview

Well in advance of the interview:

  • Before any interview, read up on the school you are visiting!

  • Look at any info on the schools own website or from other sources.

  • If you want to be taken seriously, you need to know something about who you are meeting!

    • Are there any programs you are curious about?

    • Are you aware of any unique attributes about the institution?

    • Anything you would like to know??

    • You should have five questions ready for the school.


Preparation for the interview2

Preparation for the Interview

As the Interview Approaches: Practice SPEAKING.

  • This cannot be overstated: Your interview is a conversation. Whether you are shy or extroverted, you can become more at ease with expressing yourself skillfully.

  • It is a huge leap from “thinking your thoughts” to SPEAKING them aloud. Practice so you can easefully translate your thoughts into verbal communication with others.

  • Get together with friends or family and have them ask you questions. This gives you the chance to build your capacity to respond coherently and be more relaxed, more “yourself.”

  • Mock interviews are a plus – seek them out!


Preparation for the interview3

Preparation for the Interview

As the Interview Approaches: Know YOURSELF.

  • An interview can have surprises, but if you gather your thoughts about key questions you will be more flexible and “at the ready” for any questions.

  • When your stories and experiences are easily available in your mind, you will feel much more at ease.

  • Question examples include: Why do you want to practice medicine? What are some of your strengths and weaknesses? Tell us about a time when you overcame a challenge? Tell us “about yourself?” …. We’ll talk about questions shortly…

  • Great resource: 100 Medical School Interview Practice Questions

    http://www.colorado.edu/aac/PreMed_interviewquestions.pdf


Preparation for the interview4

Preparation for the Interview

Before the interview (common sense):

  • Know when your interview is and where you need to go

  • Figure out directions and time to venue ahead of time, plan your travel accordingly—arrive the evening before if possible!

  • Make a plan that includes a decent sleep, time to get dressed, eat something and arrive 15 minutes early.

  • Take notes! Bring a neat folder/pad/pen to write with.


Preparation for the interview5

Preparation for the Interview

Before the interview (common sense): Clothing.

Doctors are professionals. In your interview, you want to look the part!

Dress in a way that is not distracting for patients.

Fashion is for personal gratification. You are there for your patients not to show off your individualism.

You also need to function as a health provider; any clothing that gets in the way of cleanliness or function shows poor professionalism.


Preparation for the interview6

Preparation for the Interview

Men

Women


Preparation for the interview7

Preparation for the Interview

Men: Don’t:

  • Turtlenecks

  • Leather other than shoes/belt

  • Jewelry in excess of a ring

  • Piercings

  • Tattoos (covered)

  • Odd shoes

  • Ties with pictures/designs

  • Strong colognes

  • Overly gelled/prepped hair

  • Hair out of face

  • Facial hair trimmed and neat

Women, Don’t:

  • Short skirts/Bare legs

  • Jewelry in excess of ring or single pair of earrings

  • Piercings

  • Tattoos (covered)

  • High heels/fad shoes

  • Tasteful buttoning of blouse

  • Strong perfumes

  • Hair out of face, conservative

  • Gaudy or trendy purse/bag

  • Long nails/arty coloring


Arriving at the interview

Arriving at the Interview

DON’T

  • Be late

  • Be sloppy

  • Look down or disconnect during greeting

  • Bring food

  • Slouch

  • Put arms in defensive position

  • Play with your hair or face.

  • Body language speaks!

DO

  • Arrive on time (aka, 15 minutes early)

  • Dress appropriately

  • Treat everyone you meet well-interview starts when you enter front door.

  • Have a firm handshake

  • Make good eye contact

  • Use good (nice long spine), and attentive posture.


The interview

The Interview

Interviewers are often very experienced.

They genuinely want to get to know you better and want to have a conversation with you.

The interview is not meant to be “scary” though you might feel nervous (which is natural). It is meant to engage you.

If you need a moment to answer, take a moment. “Hmmm, good question..”

If you stumble, it’s okay to laugh at yourself…recover, move on.


T he interview

The Interview

  • Talk WITH the interviewer, not AT the interviewer.

  • If you don’t understand something, ask for clarity. This is a conversation.

  • Answer the question asked. If it’s repeated, they want you to give more of an answer.

  • If you don’t know or have, the answer to something, let them know, don’t fake it. They can tell.

  • Confidence is different than arrogance. Be sincere.

  • MEMORIZE YOUR APPLICATION – Many questions will be formed from your own words and record!


T he interview1

The Interview

Styles of Questions that are often asked….

  • Personal

  • Your Motivation and Commitment

  • Knowledge of Program

  • Education & Experience

  • Goals and Plans

  • Current Events and Issues in Medicine

  • Behavioral/Choices

Practice questions in all these areas and you will be WELL PREPARED…even if you can’t have predicted a question you actually get. You will have greater access to yourself and your ability to be flexible and creative!


T he interview2

The Interview

Q: why do you want to be a physician?

  • *Remember what a physician does. They’re not just looking for a great student or researcher, but also someone with the spirit/desire to help people.

  • This one be able to do in 2 minutes or less!

    Q: Describe a weakness.

  • Turn this around. Think of a quality of yours that at it’s best is a strength but sometimes is a challenge. i.e.: “I love to take initiative and enjoy the challenge of helping start projects. However, sometimes I have to be very mindful because I can take on too much….”


T he interview3

The Interview

Q: Tell me something about yourself?

  • Think of this as an icebreaker vs. an overwhelming blank slate. An opportunity to suggest a topic of conversation by mentioning something meaningful to you. Is there something you’d love for them to know that didn’t make it onto your application?

    Q: What will you do if you don’t get into Medical School?

  • Do you really want to go? Tell them about your plans to become a better applicant next time around. They’re looking for applicants who really WANT to practice medicine, not just think it’s a “good idea.”


T he interview4

The Interview

Q. What would you do if a parent refused a controversial, but life-saving treatment for their child?

  • Questions like these are chances for them to learn about your reasoning skills, empathy, understanding of “first do no harm”. There aren’t “right answers. Be thoughtful and genuinely consider your answer.

    Q: How do you spend your free time?

  • They really want to know! What do you enjoy in life? Talk about an interest, a passion: Nature? A sport? Time cooking with friends? Be genuine!

    They’re not trying to trick you!

    Each Q is an opportunity to let them know more about you…how you engage is as important as what you say!


T he interview5

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular Interventions Division of Cardiovascular Medicine

Associate Dean for Admissions

The Ohio State University College of Medicine

If you get offered an interview, there is a chair in that school’s first-year medical school class with your name on it. Based on your performance in the interview, you will either claim it or give it away.


T he interview6

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular Associate Dean for Admissions

Sit up straight (posture counts)

Slumping or letting your shoulders sag may feel comfortable, but it sends the following message: “I’m bored, disinterested and unimpressed.” Obviously not the message you want to send. Think military here: Back straight, chin up! But you don’t want to look stiff; it makes you look tense and uncomfortable. While keeping your back straight, lean forward a bit, toward the interviewer. It makes you look interested.


T he interview7

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular Associate Dean for Admissions

Make eye contact, but not too intensely.

Poor eye contact gives the appearance of dishonesty or low self esteem. It also may be construed as a lack of interest in what the other person is saying. Again, clearly not the messages you want to send when you are interviewing for acceptance into medical school. Look the interviewer in the eyes when they are speaking, and look them in the eyes when you are speaking. On the other hand, you don’t want to burn a hole in the interviewer with your gaze. Don’t stare; it is acceptable to avert your eyes for a second or two. Blinking is also acceptable.


T he interview8

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular Associate Dean for Admissions

The best answers are a combination of rehearsed fragments tied together by extemporaneous connectors.

There are certain questions that you can assume will be asked at any medical school interview. You will most likely be asked some version of “Why do you want to be a physician?” or “If you don’t get into medical school, what will you do?” or “What do you consider your main strengths/weaknesses?” I disagree with some interviewers whoseem to hold with disdain the answer that sounds canned or rehearsed. Rehearsing is fine; in fact, I recommend it.


T he interview9

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular Associate Dean for Admissions

The best answers are a combination of rehearsed fragments tied together by extemporaneous connectors.

The trick is, you want to sound conversational, not like you are reading a script. How is that achieved? More rehearsing. When I interviewed for medical school, I practiced my responses to questions that I thought I was likely to be asked. Of course, it is impossible for you to anticipate every question that may be asked, so you will have to do some ad libbing. That’s OK. Be yourself, and enjoy the experience. Oh, and try not to let out a loud “Whew!” or look too excited when you are asked a question that you practiced for. Pause for a second, stroke your chin, and say “Hmmm, it seems to me...”


T he interview10

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular Associate Dean for Admissions

Look enthusiastic and happy to be there.

Being a physician is the greatest job in the world, and I truly believe that it is the second most noble profession that you can undertake, second only to being a religious leader, clergyman, minister, priest, etc. As stated earlier, if you are invited for an interview, that medical school has decided that you probably have the goods to succeed at their institution. So, be excited! You are on the cusp of something great and your dreams are within reach. Leave your interviewer with the impression that you are happy to be there and grateful for the opportunity. Even if it is your last- choice medical school, approach the interview with gratitude and humility, and imagine yourself walking those very same halls as a medical student. Because, well, you just might.


T he interview11

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular Associate Dean for Admissions

If the interviewer continues to repeat the same question despite the fact that you have answered it, he or she likes you but did not like your answer, and is giving you the opportunity to modify it.Example:Interviewer: “So, why do you want to be a physician?”

Candidate: “Because medicine is such a challenging field, and I have always loved challenges.” Interviewer: “OK. But what really attracted you to a career in medicine?”Candidate: “I am very curious about how things work, and I really love science!”


T he interview12

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular Associate Dean for Admissions

If the interviewer continues to repeat the same question despite the fact that you have answered it, he or she likes you but did not like your answer, and is giving you the opportunity to modify it.Interviewer: “So why not become a research scientist? Why medicine?”

Candidate: “Medicine is dynamic, and more suited to my personality”Interviewer: “OK, thank you for clarifying that. Now, on to something else. So...why do you want to be a physician?”In this example, the interviewer does not like the answer and is giving the candidate a chance to give the “correct” answer. If the interviewer did not like the candidate, he or she would have simply noted the answer and moved on. So, if you have the impression that the interviewer keeps repeating the question, unless it is your life’s mantra, I suggest you modify your answer.


T he interview13

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular Interventions Division of Cardiovascular Medicine

Associate Dean for Admissions

The Ohio State University College of Medicine

Your “Why Do You Want to be a Doctor?” answer should include something about your desire to help your fellow man.Most medical school admissions committees feel that the most important reason for practicing medicine is to serve mankind. So, while it is OK to mention your love of science and technology, and the fact that you love challenges, and the fact you have never really wanted to do anything else, it is a mortal sin of omission to not state your desire to help your fellow man as the main reason that you want to be a doctor. We regularly reject students with perfect GPAs and near perfect MCAT scores if we are not convinced that they have a serving heart.


T he interview14

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular

It is better to take a brief pause before answering a question to gather your thoughts than to dive right in and “find the answer” in your ramblings.Some candidates begin answering the question the instant the last word rolls off of the interviewer’s tongue. Some of these same students have not clearly thought out their answers, and ramble while they are getting their thoughts together. Finally, they decide how they feel about it, and answer the question directly after many unrelated sentences. I think this is because candidates feel that an awkward silence is uncomfortable and to be avoided at all cost. But a brief pause before answering a question is perfectly acceptable, and makes you appear thoughtful. It is much better to pause for a second or two and gather your thoughts than to blurt out a stream-of-consciousness response that takes a circuitous route to the answer.


T he interview15

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular

Arrogance is a mortal sin

I like confidence; I think most people do. A candidate who has put in many long hours and has learned that hard work results in success is refreshing. Medical schools want to admit students who believe in themselves and who think they can do the work. However, avoid sounding arrogant, which is how the candidate can sound if they stress their personal successes too much. Example: if you started a new pre-med club at your college, that shows exemplary leadership, and the admissions committee will see that as valuable.


T he interview16

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular

Arrogance is a mortal sin

When describing it, it would be better to be humble, acknowledging the role that others played (“...my fellow biology majors were very helpful in this endeavor.” ) rather than making it sound like you did it completely by yourself. Another example: If you are complimented on the fact that you got straight As in your honors humanities courses, don’t respond, “Piece of cake!” In particular, medical student interviewers (some medical schools have medical students serve as interviewers and members of the admissions committee) are quick to detect arrogance in a candidate, and tend to be very harsh judges when they perceive this trait. Feel good about yourself; you’ve earned the right to feel confident. Just remember, there is a thin line between a hard-earned swagger and arrogance.


T he interview17

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular

The best answers to “What if You Don’t Get in to Medical School this year?” always include some variation on this theme: “I will find out why I did not, address the shortfall, and then reapply.”Persistence can be admirable. Many medical school admissions officers look favorably upon the re-applicant who applies himself and specifically addresses his shortcomings. For this reason, when the interviewer asks what you would do if you were rejected, he is trying to ascertain how committed and passionate you are about being a physician.


T he interview18

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular

Even though it is wise to have a backup plan, if you answer the “What will you do if you do not get into medical school?” question with “Well, I've always liked kids and teaching. I would probably get my teaching certificate and become a high school science teacher,” you may be perceived as lacking a commitment to pursue a career in medicine. When there are many other candidates who will let nothing stop them from realizing their dream of becoming a doctor, you don’t want to come off as though you will happily move on to plan B if medical school doesn’t work out. Those who truly hear the high calling of medicine will find a way. This means finding out why you were not accepted, correcting this shortcoming, and applying again. This is the kind of passion that admissions officers want to hear.


T he interview19

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular

Ask informed questions about the medical school at which you are interviewing.

Approach your medical school interview the same way you would prepare for an organic chemistry quiz: study for it. Prior to visiting the medical school, you should, at a minimum, be familiar with the segment describing that school in the annual AAMC Medical School Admissions Requirements publication. Additionally, you should do some online research, to find out what is new at the school – perhaps new expansions, new initiatives, etc. Asking informed questions will leave the impression that you are truly interested in attending the school, and therefore likely to come if you are accepted. Admissions officers tend to look more favorably upon students who they think will accept an offer of admission than those who they think will not.


T he interview20

The Interview

From:

Quinn Capers IV, MD, FACC, FSCAI

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director, Peripheral Vascular

The “ethical question” should always be answered with the following bent: “I will put the patient’s best interests first, and do whatever is best for the patient.”Though falling out of favor, many interviewers will still ask a question or two meant to evaluate your ethical decision making. Questions in this variety include queries about how you, as a physician, would respond if you encountered a drunk surgeon prior to his performing an operation. Another favorite is the question that asks what you would do if you witnessed a medical school classmate cheating on an examination. The golden rule in medical ethics is to always put the patient’s best interests first. Thus, the “correct” answer to any ethical dilemma posed is the one that places the patient’s welfare above all else.


Masters ph d programs

Masters/Ph.D Programs

How hard is graduate school?

  • Attrition rate of some Ph.D programs is as high at 75%

  • By comparison more than 90% of medical school students receive degrees.

  • Very few jobs in biology for B.S. degree students.

  • You usually must do a graduate level program to get a good job.


A look at the other side

A Look at the Other Side


The art and science of interviewing or tricks to the eras application

The Art and Science of Interviewing (or tricks to the ERAS application)

Sheilah Bernard, MD

Associate Program Director, Medicine Residency

Chair, Internship Recruitment and Clinical Competence Committee


Objectives

Objectives

  • Understand the role of the interview

  • Reflect on how to determine if you would like to work with that candidate (or just socialize) e.g can this candidate care for my loved one?

  • Familiarize yourself with interview Do’s and Don’ts

  • Review for the experienced and stimulate the novice


The process

The process….

  • Candidates apply to many schools 12-50

  • Many ERAS (Electronic Residency Application Service) applications are received

  • All are screened

    • MSPE (Medical Student Performance Evaluation) or Dean’s letter –where do they rank in the class?

    • DOM letter: where do they rank amongst IM applicants from that school?

    • IM Clerkship/IM SubIntern grades

    • USMLE scores: are they coachable?

    • Extracurriculars: what could they contribute to program?

  • Only 10% are selected to interview; 10% of these match


Know who we are high value care

Know who “we” are (High Value Care)

  • Come to Infosession, email to follow if you can’t

  • Socially responsible, academic municipal hospital in Boston serving diverse patient population (98% insured state-wide) with a VA experience

    • Triad of education, research and patient care

    • Exceptional Care Without Exception, or The Right Care, no more, no less

  • Block schedule (ambulatory distinct from inpt)

  • Entirely electronic (Epic experience appreciated!)

  • Opt into tracks as PGY2

  • Successful matches into subspecialties


The pre interview

The “pre-interview”

  • Frequent complaint is “the interviewer did not read my application”

    • Program will try to match interviewee with both a faculty/junior faculty sharing similar birthplace, college, med school, fields of interest (in and out of medicine)

    • Last minute changes occur, we try for Friday distribution prior to interview week (M/W)

    • Look for an underlying theme linking personal statement, work experience, research, or extracurriculars; ask open-ended questions to explain


The interviewer should

The interviewer should…

  • Maintain professional atmosphere in a quiet room, avoid interruptions; turn beeper over

  • Limit discussion to issues related to candidacy for residency position

  • Ask only for information necessary to make a sound decision

  • Use proper terminology: we interview residency “candidates” for further training, in business we interview “applicants” for variable skill sets


Identify red flags

Identify Red Flags

  • Misdemeanors

  • Typographical errors

  • Gaps in education (buried in transcript or Dean’s MSPE)

  • “Nice, punctual” are not flattering adjectives

    • “Will develop”, “Made strides”, “gaining confidence”

  • Special considerations

    • Needs to be in Boston

    • Couples matching, Visa are a tick box

  • Information provided on application is subject to questions


Identifying key words

Identifying Key Words

  • Every school is different, interpret in quartiles or quintiles or sextuples

  • MSPE: Outstanding > Superior > Excellent > Very good > Good > Capable

  • DOM: “We will be recruiting him/her to stay at our institution”

  • Integrity of LOR: From researchers, mentors or family acquaintances; “in my 30 (vs 2) years’ experience”


Guiding principles for interview

Guiding Principles for Interview

  • Be time sensitive

    • 2 interviews plus tour: 30 minutes limit/interview

  • Introductions

    • The applicant may have Google’d you (do they know you more than you know them?)

  • Be aware that online Residency Interview Tips on YouTube are popular this time of year

  • Always observe

    • Composure, fluidity of thoughts/language

    • Motivation, “fit” at BMC, Talk the talk or walk the walk?


The interviewer should1

The interviewer should…

  • Approach the interview as s/he would a patient encounter

  • Ask open-ended questions

  • Avoid interrupting the candidate

  • Use silence or pauses to encourage the candidate to speak candidly

  • Ask the same questions of all candidates regardless of gender or ethnicity


The interviewer should2

The interviewer should…

  • Focus the interview on the candidate’s expressed capabilities and attitudes in relationship to the residency or fellowship appointment

  • Avoid stereotyping candidates; use gender neutral terms

  • Try to get feel for candidate’s humility, intellectual integrity and willingness to work

  • Use nondiscriminatory language to identify special needs (are there any reasons you would not be able to perform expected duties?)


Areas to avoid

Areas to avoid

  • Although questions about social, personal or family issues may put a candidate at ease, one should not ask about age, marital status, pregnancy, family planning, number of children and childcare issues, religion, physical disabilities or race

  • Ask questions that the Selection Committee would need to know


Recommended questions

Recommended questions

  • “Are there any current or foreseeable family obligations or health considerations that might make it difficult to work as a resident at BMC?” Open ended, can be asked of all candidates

  • “Are there any questions I can answer about community life outside the medical center?” Allows candidates to ask about childcare, etc.


Types of interviews

Types of interviews

  • Structured

    • Standard panel of questions each candidate must answer

    • Allows us to train and standardize interaction

    • Less spontaneous and more formal

    • May put off candidates


Types of interviews1

Types of interviews

  • Structured

  • Semi-structured or unstructured

    • Allows the interviewer to individualize the contact

    • Allows more critical evaluation of weaker candidate; allows more inviting format for stronger candidates

    • Interviewer evaluates interviewee while interviewee is evaluating interviewer

    • Allows the flexibility to scrutinize or recruit the candidate


Types of interviews2

Types of Interviews

  • Individual (standard)

  • Panel

    • A panel of interviewers evaluates a single candidate

  • Group

    • Interactions with program coordinators

    • Watching interactions during Meet & Greet

    • Feedback from tours

    • Board games for down time

      • IPSC, leadership, assertiveness/passiveness


Establish rapport

Establish rapport

  • What would you do if not medicine?

  • What do you think makes a good resident?

  • What do you do to relax (in application)?

  • What motivates you?

  • What are you looking for in a training program?

  • What is important to you?


Ask about past performances

Ask about past performances

  • Tell me about your research project. Why did you choose that hypothesis?

  • What areas do you think you can improve on? How have you worked on them in the past?

  • Tell me about an interesting or inspirational patient (personal statement) and why.

  • Tell me about a challenging patient. What did you learn from it?


Ask about past performance

Ask about past performance

  • At the end of a “good day”, what makes it good?

  • How would you like to be remembered by your medical school?

  • What was your most challenging goal and how did you achieve it?

  • What was your most difficult decision in medical school and what influenced that decision?


Assess interpersonal skills stress management

Assess interpersonal skills/stress management

  • What kind of person has been difficult to work with, and how did you deal with it?

  • What do you think constitutes teamwork?

  • Describe an unpleasant or stressful situation in medical school and how you dealt with it.

  • What gets you going, what keeps you going?

  • What will be your biggest challenge as resident?

  • What barriers would keep you from coming to our program?


Assess character and personality

Assess character and personality

  • What single quality distinguishes you from other candidates? What should I know about you to help us decide if you were a good candidate for our program?

  • How have you changed over the past 4 years?

  • What in your life are you most proud of?

  • What do you like to read?

  • Describe your weaknesses

  • What are your goals during residency?


Clarify understanding

Clarify understanding

  • What are your 10 year goals? Your 3-5 year goals?

  • How would you describe the ideal physician?

  • Who is your role model? Whom do you emulate inside or outside of medicine?

  • What 4th year electives are you taking and why?

  • What will you like most/least during residency?

  • How would you change your medical school curriculum? What are its strengths?


Clarify understanding1

Clarify understanding

  • What are your reservations about IM residency or our program specifically?

  • Tell me what interested you about our program today.

  • Can I clarify anything you heard or saw today?


Challenging questions

Challenging questions

  • Ask candidates to tell you how they do something at which they are adept (e.g. cooking a dish, golf swing, jigsaw puzzle). See how well they convey information

  • (Ask riddles/brain teasers)

  • (Present challenging clinical cases)


Review notes and finalize impressions

Review notes and finalize impressions

  • Standard interview sheet

    • Objective grades/scores

    • Letters of references (MSPE, DOM, others)

    • Extracurriculars and level achieved

      • Volunteerism

      • School activism/civic duties

      • Research

    • Interview x 2

    • Exit interview


Review notes and finalize impressions1

Review notes and finalize impressions

  • Quickly jot down feelings and impressions

  • Document concerns (Red Flags)

  • Document the context and who initiated if sensitive topics discussed

  • Document items for discussion by Selection Committee

    • VIP candidates, current residents’ friends/opinions

    • Need to be in Boston, Visa issues if not already documented


Post interview communications

Post-Interview Communications

  • A national headache

  • Communication with candidates after the interview regarding their competitiveness should be forwarded to the Program Office.

  • Thank you’s are being discouraged; you can respond to the interviewee that you enjoyed talking to them and you wish them professional success; bcc program office.


Why review interview process

Why review interview process?

  • Helps add your voice to our candidates’ application

  • Struggling residents had evidence of struggles recognized in the application process

  • We will endorse a candidate’s application if we feel we can support him/her

  • Your interviewees are seeing all these questions on the internet, YouTube so be prepared!


Present concepts

Present concepts

  • The Behavioral Interview

    • Behavioral interviews are based on the premise that a person's past performance at “work” is the best predictor of future performance

    • Interviewer asks how candidate acts and reacts in certain circumstances; how one handles a situation rather than just gathering information

      • Give specific "real life" examples of how candidates behaved in situations relating to the questions

      • Give an example of a goal you achieved and tell me how you achieved it


Future directions

Future directions

  • Multiple Mini-Interviews

    • Started at McMaster University with 6-10 timed stations through which applicants rotate

    • Each station has a scenario, task or question

    • Medical schools seek to admit individuals who will make not only excellent students, but ultimately become outstanding physicians. The best physicians are those who are not simply repositories of information; they are ethical, caring professionals and excellent communicators.

    • The MMI was created as a potentially more effective means of assessing qualities that lie outside the realm of grades and test scores


The health professions school interview

MMI

  • Standard interview questions may not reveal an individual’s communication skills, problem-solving abilities, level of professionalism or other skills important for the practice of medicine.

  • The MMI approach uses a series of stations to assess specific skills and qualities and assigns the same interviewer to rate all applicants at a station in order to address some of the weaknesses of the standard interview format

  • Used at the medical school level, technique is filtering into residency programs


Mmi stations

MMI stations

  • Ethical dilemmas or questions about policy or social issues.

    • The instructions describe a situation and then ask the candidate to discuss the ethical or other issues involved.

    • The interviewer may follow up with questions designed to probe the applicant’s response

    • Obamacare supports care for all over care for the individual. Discuss.


Mmi stations1

MMI stations

  • Standard interview questions.

    • An MMI may include one or more stations with traditional interview questions such as “Why did you apply to this school?” or “Describe an obstacle that you have overcome.”

  • A task requiring teamwork.

    • Since the ability to work as part of a team is essential to medicine, some stations involve two applicants working together to complete a task.


Mmi stations2

MMI stations

  • Essay writing.

    • Some schools include an essay component as part of the interview process so a station may involve responding to a prompt in writing.

    • This station may be longer than the others to allow for the applicant to formulate and write the response

  • A rest station.

    • An interview takes a lot of energy, since the applicant is “on” the whole time and being presented with challenging tasks at every station.

    • Many MMIs include a rest station. The applicant can clear their mind and get ready for the next station.


Mmi stations3

MMI stations

  • Interactions with an actor.

    • At these stations, the applicant is provided with a scenario involving an individual who is played by an actor.

    • The applicant may need to give the individual bad news, confront the person about a problem or gather information e.g. catching a friend cheating

    • An observer present in the room will rate the applicant based on his or her interaction with the actor


The health professions school interview

Does applicant personality influence multiple mini-interview performance and medical school acceptance offers? (UC Davis)

  • Looked at 5 traits in 444 applicants in 2010-11 (agreeableness, conscientiousness, extraversion, neuroticism, openness) undergoing MMI

  • Extraversion was associated with MMI performance, whereas both extraversion and agreeableness were associated with acceptance offers.

  • Adoption of the MMI may affect diversity in medical student personalities, with potential implications for students' professional growth, specialty distribution, and patient care.

Acad Med. 2012 Sep;87(9):1250-9


Objectives1

Objectives

  • Understand the role of the interview

  • Reflect on how to determine if you would like to work with that applicant (or just socialize) e.g can this applicant care for my loved one?

  • Familiarize yourself with interview Do’s and Don’ts

  • Review for the experienced and stimulate the novice


Motivational interviewing

Motivational Interviewing

  • “...a collaborative, person-centered formof guiding to elicit and strengthen motivation for change.”

  • MI is a particular kind of conversation about change (counseling, therapy, consultation, methodof communication)

  • The style of MI is calm and focuses on drawing out motivation to change from the interviewee rather than trying to force the interviewee to make positive changes

  • Used in addiction patient encounters

  • Used in mentoring/coaching to change behaviors


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