From the applicant's perspective, the purpose of the interview is to:
- Present the person behind the application.
- Demonstrate professionalism and communication skills.
- Learn about the school and confirm if it's a good fit.
From the school's perspective, the purpose of the interview is to:
- Evaluate the interpersonal skills of the applicant.
- Evaluate professionalism and readiness for a career in medicine.
- Promote their institution.
- Attend an Interview Preparation workshop. See our events page for upcoming sessions.
- Participate in a mock interview (see details below).
- Review submitted application materials.
- Know the school thoroughly; review its web site.
- Keep updated on current topics related to medicine.
- Plan for the interview day (e.g. attire, transportation, location, etc.).
What to Expect
In general your interview will include the following:
- A tour of the school typically led by current medical students.
- An orientation including financial aid information.
- Interview(s) - Typically one or two 30-45 minute sessions with faculty, administrators and/or medical students.
- Lunch is usually with medical students (i.e. no admissions staff present).
- Some schools may offer an event the evening before interviewing.
- Some schools will offer accommodations with medical students to help defray costs.
- The Medical School Admissions Requirements (MSAR) guide (login required) contains information on format of the interview. Health professions advisors can also give insight into some medical schools' interview formats.
- Expect to be nervous, especially if it's your first interview. Most medical schools want to make the interview more like a conversation.
- Interview Preparation Workshops offered by HPA, usually in the fall quarter. See our events page for upcoming sessions.
- Meet with an advisor at HPA. We're happy to meet with applicants and offer insight on medical school interviews, including information on particular schools.
- Mock interviews are available to students who have applied to medical school and have received one or more interview invitations. We are only able to provide one mock interview per student, per application cycle. To schedule your mock interview, please email our Program Assistant at firstname.lastname@example.org with your interview information (school/program and date), as well as your availability for scheduling the mock interview. Mock interview requests will not be accepted via AdviseStream, as two advisors need to be available.
- Northwestern Career Advancement offers support for students with financial need through the Career Development Fund. Eligible students can receive assistance with up to two interview travel requests per year and funding for an interview suit once during their undergraduate career.
- The Association of American Medical College's (AAMC) "35 Questions I Wish I Had Asked" from medical students is designed to assist applicants in evaluating medical schools. Be aware that interviewers may be very familiar with these questions.