Most shortlisted candidates will be called for interview at The University of Manchester, although we hold some interviews overseas.
About the interview
The pre-interview screening process operated by the medicine admissions team at Manchester will already have ensured that all candidates called to interview appear to have sufficient academic potential. The purpose of the interview is to take a wider view of the applicant.
The interview itself is a formal, though friendly, process. The majority of the interviewers are drawn from both the University and clinical environments and all have undergone specific training for interviewing applicants including issues relating to equality and diversity. In addition, we also draw on the expertise of patient/lay representatives (Manchester education partners), current medical students and simulated patients. We appreciate that some candidates will be nervous, so we ensure that interviews are conducted in as relaxed an environment as possible.
The interview is not a test of your academic knowledge. The aim of the interview is to explore the non-academic criteria, as well as to encourage you to talk naturally about yourself, your studies and your experiences, and to demonstrate that you have the interpersonal skills to be able to communicate effectively and show that you are a well-rounded individual. In this way, you can show that you meet the academic and non-academic attributes required of a prospective doctor.
We will look at the following areas in your interview.
Ability to communicate
Communication skills are essential to the practice of almost all aspects of medicine. We expect candidates to be able to express their ideas clearly and coherently and to be able to follow a reasoned argument.
Candidates who give spontaneous yet well-thought-out answers to questions are more likely to impress the interviewers than those who give obviously rehearsed and 'coached' responses.
Why do you want to be a doctor?
This is an obvious but vital question. It is also the question to which candidates most frequently reply with a coached and practiced answer.
We will seek specific evidence of the experiences that have influenced your decision to study medicine.
Previous caring experience
Your experiences in a caring role will be of great interest. These need not be in a traditional mainstream medical environment.
The interview is an opportunity for candidates to relate not only the facts and details of their experiences, but also their emotional responses to them and what they have gained from them.
Matters of a medical interest
Candidates will not be expected to have detailed knowledge of medical processes.
However, the interviewers will expect you to have an informed layperson's view on contemporary aspects of medicine, particularly those of current media interest.
Ethical and other issues
Ethical issues may be raised by the interviewers, but only to assess your ability to coherently summarise the issues at stake.
Candidates should be reassured that neither the interviewers nor The University of Manchester will take a position on any ethical issue.
It is not your ethical views that the interviewers may be interested in, but how coherently you express the ethical dilemmas facing medical practitioners.
You will not be asked questions in any of the following areas: gender, sexuality, marital or parental status, race, religion, social background.
The interview process for 2020 entry will adopt a seven-station multiple mini interview (MMI) format, with each station having an interviewer.
Each station will be seven minutes long and there will be a two-minute gap between stations. In the two-minute gap, you will be provided with some information about the next station so that you can begin to prepare your thoughts.
The station where you start will be allocated at random and you will then pass round the circle from station to station until you have completed them all.
For 2020 entry, interviews at Manchester will be held in December 2019 and January/February 2020. You will not be offered a place at Manchester without an interview.
All interviewees will be sent detailed information which explains the interview procedure and format of the interview process.
International applicants are offered the opportunity to either come to Manchester for interview or to be interviewed overseas. We are usually able to offer interviews in Singapore, Malaysia, Dubai and Mauritius.