Common Styles of Interviewing

Traditional One-on-One

The traditional process consists of two, 30-minute, one-on-one interviews. Your interviewer may be clinical faculty, research faculty, a professional school student, or a dean or director of admissions. The interview questions are designed to allow the interviewer to evaluate your ability to establish rapport, your qualities that will make you a competent health professional, your knowledge of the profession, your ability to think through challenging situations, and your awareness of current issues impacting your profession. There is also a time for you to ask them questions. Be prepared to ask questions that will elicit the kind of information that would help you evaluate the school’s fit for you.

Multi-Mini Interview (MMI)

The MMI consists of a series of multiple “stations”, each with an interview question, scenario that calls for action, or a role play (like speaking with a standardized patient). Typically, you are given two minutes to read and think about the prompt. During this time, you should think carefully about how you will frame your response. Be careful with questions that have multiple parts. You will want to make sure you answer all components of the prompt. At the end of the two minutes you will be signaled to enter the room and introduce yourself (name only) and then you will provide your answer to the prompt. The time in the room is also timed. It varies from 5-8 minutes. You are not expected to speak for the full amount of time. Your initial answer will likely be between 2.5 and 3.5 minutes. Then the interviewer will typically ask additional questions or provide additional information for you to consider. When signaled, you will exit the room and move to the next station. In the case of a virtual interview, you will typically be in a zoom room where the prompt will be posted. At the end of the 2 minutes, you will be put into a breakout room with an interviewer. You will introduce yourself and then answer the question.

Group Interviews

Some schools conduct a group interview. The purpose of this is to observe how you typically behave in a group. Typically, the size of the group is somewhere between 7-10 students. You are provided with an activity to be completed as together. An example of this is:

  • You are stranded on a desert island. Here is a list of 20 resources. You will only have access to 10 of the resources. As a group, please determine which 10 resources you will request. You have 15 minutes to complete this activity.

The intention is not for everyone to be the leader – this would clearly not work. You must find a way to collaborate that allows everyone to be heard. You must also decide how to make your selection of resources. While the group is working through this process, a person (or two) will be observing the dialogue.