Interview Preparation

Many health professional programs invite applicants to interview for acceptance to a program. The interview is one of the most important elements in the healthcare professions application process.  When a school invites you to an interview, they are indicating an interest in selecting you. The interview gives both of you the opportunity to exchange information to determine if you are a good “fit” for each other.

View the tabs below to find out more information about the types of interviews you may encounter, PHMO Interview Prep services, and trusted resources for interview preparation in different healthcare professions.

The interview process for health professions programs varies widely between professions and individual schools. In all cases, the interview allows the admission committee to learn more about your experiences, assess your problem solving and critical thinking skills, and evaluate your interpersonal skills and your motivation for the profession. Below you will find information on the different interview questions, types, and styles you may encounter.

Interview Questions

  • General: General questions include typical interview questions about your strengths and weaknesses, for example.  “Tell me about yourself” is the most common question to begin an interview. Here is sample list of questions the Career Center staff often use when conducting mock interviews with students.
  • Behavioral Based: Interviewers ask Behavioral Based questions to determine how you managed certain situations in the past to determine if you would be able to handle them and perform well in the future as an employee at their organization. Here is a sample list of Behavioral Based questions. It is important to use the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Results) method anytime you are providing an example to help answer behavioral based questions. Using diverse and honest examples from all of your experiences helps them know and understand you are in tune with your experiences.

Interview Types

  • Individual Interviews: During this type of interview, you will meet one-on-one with your interviewer. The interviewer may be a faculty member, admission office staff, professional in the field, a current student, or a member of the community. The full interview process may consist of only one individual interview or you may have several individual interviews throughout the day.

  • Panel  Interviews: Panel Interviews typically involve several interviewers meeting with you at once. These may be in a "question and answer" type format where each panel member asks their own question, or "scenario" format where you will discuss situations with the entire panel.

  • Small Group Interviews: In Small Group Interviews, multiple applicants are interviewed at once by one or more interviewers. Again, these may be in "question and answer" format, where you may be asked questions individually, or "scenario" format where you will discuss situations with the group as a whole.

  • Multiple Mini Interviews (MMI): An MMI typically consists of six to ten timed stations through which applicants rotate, meeting with a new interviewer each time. At each station, the applicant is presented with a new question, scenario or task. The MMI approach uses these stations to assess specific skills and qualities. An applicant should focus on developing his or her ability to formulate a logical, thorough response within a strict timeframe.

Interview Styles

  • Open:  the interviewer has seen the file
  • Semi-Open: the interviewer has seen a portion (usually the personal statement)
  • Closed: the interviewer has never seen your file (expect lots of open-ended questions)

The interview is a vital part of the admissions process and PHMO is here to provide a few different ways of helping you prepare for interviews. The PHMO offers InterviewStream and in-person mock interviews with emeritus faculty members of Emory University. The services build on each other as way of helping you prepare. You must complete an InterviewStream and self-assessment before scheduling an in-person mock interview.

InterviewStream Mock Interviews: InterviewSteam is a web-based program where participants can create an account and answer pre-recorded questions to practice skills that will help them to succeed in healthcare professional school interviews. Emory affiliated students (current Pre-Health undergraduates and alumni) may have one virtual interview critiqued by the PHMO after they have successfully completed an interview and the accompanying self-assessment. While only one virtual interview will be critiqued, students may record as many practice interviews as they choose. See the instructions for setting up an account here: InterviewStream Instructions.

Emeritus Faculty Mock Interviews: Students may schedule an in-person mock interview with an Emory emeritus faculty member. To be eligible for an in-person mock interview, a student must complete an InterviewStream and the self-assessment. To request a mock interview with an emeritus faculty member, please complete this request form: https://emoryoue.wufoo.com/forms/mnoe9tj0fdxfnf/. You should request an interview 2-3 weeks in advance. Mock interviews will begin in September 2017.

PHMO and Career Center Resources

Profession-specific interview resources can be found under each healthcare profession on the "Explore" page of the PHMO website.