Applying to Medical SchoolPre-Med Academics

How to Answer “Any Questions?” During an Interview

Don't leave the interviewer without making them answer a few questions

At the end of each of your interviews, you will most likely be asked if you have any questions. Do not shake your head and say, “No.” Would you buy a car without asking any questions? Would you undergo a medical procedure without asking any questions? Therefore, how could you not have any questions about a decision requiring a huge investment of time, money and effort that is going to impact the rest of your life?

To that end, not only should you have questions prepared for each person or group you interview with, but they should be quality ones. Do not ask questions that can easily be looked up on the medical school website. Do not ask questions just for the sake of asking questions. Interviewers can tell when you are being disingenuous. Instead, really think about the things you want to know more about so that you can make the most informed decision possible.

Although I cannot tell you what to ask, here are three tips that will hopefully enable you to come up with quality questions on your own.

First, research the medical school you are interviewing at. And I do not mean read the same four or five website pages that every interviewee reads. Read everything you can on the website about the medical school, its affiliated hospitals and anything else that seems relevant. The more you know, the more specific questions you can ask.

Second, Google the medical school and then click “News.” This way, if there is anything major happening at there, you will be able to discuss it. The last thing you want to happen is for your interviewer to say, “So what do you think about X” (with X being the latest greatest thing happening at the medical school), and for you to look like a deer in the headlights.

Third, if you are interviewing with medical school students, ask them about their experience as a medical student. Furthermore, not only should you ask what they like about their experience, but also what they think could be improved. After all, you are assessing the medical school as much as it is assessing you. It would be strange if the medical student did not have any constructive criticism about the medical school.

So remember: be sure to have some quality questions prepared. Otherwise, the interviewers may question if you are a good fit for their medical school.

Ziggy Yoediono MD

Dr. Yoediono was a Duke University pre-major advisor, and an adcom member for Duke University School of Medicine, the University of Rochester School of Medicine and the Harvard Longwood Psychiatry Residency Program. Today, he is an Associate Director of Advising at MedSchoolCoach.

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