Face to Face Interviews: 1-on-1 & MMI

“The more I pay attention to what’s going on inside, the more I realize that how I feel, and how I react to what I feel, creates my reality. The more in touch I can be, the better chance I have to control what’s happening in my life.”

– Ricky Williams


Focused Interview Prep Walkthrough

White Coat Checklist has never recommended trying to memorize more than a brief self-introduction for any formal medical school interview. This advice is particularly true for Multiple Mini Interviews which can average in length about six minutes each, where pretty much every single moment must be spontaneous. Conversation tends to flow much more naturally, at a lower stress level, by adopting a context-response approach where answers are developed in concert with the Fast Five Facts previously identified as the essential starting points for effective written communication. Consider the following set of five descriptors, provided by a prior WCC candidate upon successful matriculation (this response set will be used as the test case for WCC’s interviewing techniques over the course of this module):

  • Communication Skills
  • Compassion
  • Creativity/Resourcefulness
  • Self-Control
  • Strong Work Ethic (NOT RECOMMENDED – remember, the goal here is to avoid attributes that could be claimed by most other candidates)

Any competitive WCC candidate needs to be supremely comfortable with the personal set of Fast Five Facts, at least for a few minutes of formal interview discussion (especially if the attributes can be validated on the basis of having spoken with recommenders in advance to ensure that supporting documentation will validate them). The following examples demonstrate how the White Coat Checklist interview approach can be utilized to identify and amplify contextually relevant life experiences with practice interview questions, given appropriate attention to body language and related non-verbal cues. Evaluate strengthening your own  competitive interview advantage with the following practice resources tailored for use by medical applicants rehearsing for ‘the real thing’ in just a few days. A minimum of two weeks’ steady practice with the following sample questions is strongly recommended for best outcome results. 


Breaking Down Interview Question Categories

All medical school interview questions can be broken down into three categories: personal, topical, and ethical (ethical cases can be considered a highly specific subset of topical questions, focused on a very singular aspect of topical knowledge and empathetic understanding). The following sections are specifically provided to make sure you understand the differences between each question set and how to frame appropriate responses which will not only satisfy your interviewers but also help you earn their sincere respect. Read on, and good luck! Above all, remember that your essays have offered a particular narrative which this particular school has accepted as close enough to their own vision of medicine to possibly invite you to join them. Make sure to spend enough time reflecting on what you already have written, to make sure your future comments will reflect a similar spirit in new language. 

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