My main message for you today is that practice makes progress. Do not think of getting into medical school as a matter of luck. It is all hard work and dedication. The same applies to doing well on the MCAT and earning a top GPA.
The following is how I, as a current Canadian medical school student, would go about preparing for medical school interviews.Other people may prepare themselves differently.
So let's get started, shall we?
Does which school you are applying to matter?
Seeing as to how I was accepted to multiple schools, I do not see why it would not work at any school that interviews students in the MMI format. Whether that is McMaster, UofT, Queens, McGill, Dalhousie, UBC, or any other school you have your sites on, MMI preparation is a skill that can be improved.
Part 1: Resources
1. A partner: You need someone to practice with on a weekly basis. Review recent health care articles together and ask each other prompts. Providing feedback for each other is crucial to learning from your mistakes.
2. Practice prompts: There are quite a few resources available such as UBC's own medical school (http://science-student.sites.olt.ubc.ca/files/2014/01/Sample-Questions-2013-2014.pdf
). The best ones include answers to the questions (http://TeachDoctor.com/interview-questions/
). If you want to improve your interviewing skills, it would make sense to simulate questions from the interview. This website includes in-depth answers from medical students. You can answer all the prompts in the world but how do you know if your answers are what the interviewers are looking for? This is why it is helpful to have a resource that provides helpful responses that you can practice with.
3. Medical Ethics: Ethics in Medicine (URL: http://depts.washington.edu/bioethx/topics/index.html
). You are not expected to be a walking encyclopedia when it comes to medical ethics. Medical schools understand that incoming students should only have some knowledge on this topic.
4. Doing Right: A Practical Guide to Medical Ethics by Herbert. This book is held in high regard by a great deal of students. Does it actually help? I personally believe that the University of Washington’s online lessons are more than enough (see link 2). This book is an enjoyable read, but it does not involve enough active recall and practice. Reading it is a passive task that does not help in preparing you for the interview.
5. Communication and rapport: You should demonstrate an ability to establish rapport with patients. Obviously, there are indicators that people convey to the interviewer that they can or cannot convey empathy and consideration for other peoples’ perspectives. You should read the American Medical Association’s 6 tips on how to understand patients (URL: https://wire.ama-assn.org/education/6-simple-ways-master-patient-communication
). Again, there are many books on this topic. But the main idea is that you want to convey empathy and establish rapport with patients.
Medical schools want to produce doctors who truly care for their patient. As a matter of fact, rapport and understanding the perspective of others is a central aspect of medicine.