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What are the Different Interview Formats?

Traditional Interview

This is the typical one-one-one interview. Interviewers are either medical students or faculty. Most schools have you interview with a student and a faculty member for 20-30 minutes each. Nevertheless, interviews can range anywhere from 20 minutes to one hour. Be sure to quickly respond to your interviewers unique style. Some may want to have a casual conversation while others ask question after question. There is a lot of variability in the traditional interview but just be sure you are comfortable talking about yourself.

Group or panel interview

This type of interview usually consists of one (you) to four interviewees and two to four interviewers. Again, the interviewers are either medical students or faculty. If you are the only person interviewing in front of a panel, they will take turns asking you various questions. If you are interviewing with others, the interviewers will take turns asking each of you different questions. Sometimes they may make you work together to figure out a problem. The content of a group interview usually depends on each school and so it can be hard to predict.

Multiple Mini Interview (MMI)

This type of interview, which was originally developed in Canada, is a more recent development. More and more schools are adopting this method because they believe it is fairer and objective. The MMI consists of about eight stations through which the interviewee rotates. You will be given a different scenario or question in each station. You may be asked to role-play with your interviewer or another application or answer a question. Sometimes you are required to work in a team to figure out a problem. You will be given a couple of minutes to read over each exercise and prepare your response. The different scenarios and questions in the MMI are designed to evaluate your personality, communication skills, values, ethics, and your reactions to problems. Once again, each school does the MMI differently and there really isn’t much you can do to prepare for it. Some admissions committee officers say the closest thing to an MMI is speed dating.

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