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Healthcare Graduate School Questions

Health Profession Graduate School Interview Questions for Medical/Dental/Optometry/Physical Therapy/Occupational Therapy Schools
How are you today? (Not as innocent as it may seem. Prepare 30-second intro that stresses what you want them to know about you. Be careful that it does not sound canned.)
Tell me about yourself. (Avoid rambling)
What are your strengths and weaknesses? (Turn weaknesses into strengths/end on a positive note) Similar questions:
Have you always done the best work of which you were capable?
What will be the toughest aspect of medical education for you?
Tell me about a time you failed. What did it teach you about yourself?
Tell me three of your worst qualities and three of your best qualities.
What do you think the hardest thing about being a physician is?
Who are your heroes? (Find someone)
Describe three people who have profoundly influenced you.
If you could invite any three guests (living or deceased) to a dinner party, who would it be?
What do you do in your spare time? (Tell them you do more than just study)
What are you currently reading?
What are your hobbies?
What do you do just for fun?
What are your plans for a family? (May be an illegal question but is asked often. Respond in a way to show that your outside life will not affect your performance)
Why do you want to be a physician/physical therapist...etc? (Do not become bored with your own answer.)
How do you explain your low grades/dropping of classes/low MCAT, DAT, etc. scores? (Do not sound defensive. A deficiency in one area doesn’t have to be a liability unless you react adversely. Be honest. Explain that you worked and went to school, that you had adjustment problems your first year, point out your high major GPA, or how your grades steadily improved over your college career, etc.)
What will you do if you are not accepted this time? (Make sure they know you will do what it takes to apply again)
Do you have any questions for us? (Always say yes. Refer to CDC worksheet, “Interview Questions to Ask Health Related Professional Schools” for ideas).
Expect the unexpected. Here are some questions designed to test your quick thinking abilities or how you handle stress.

If you could be any cell in the human body, which would you choose to be and why?
I don’t think you’d be right for a medical career, why don’t you be a nurse/ teacher/other occupation?
Teach me something not related to your schoolwork in five minutes.
How do you normally handle conflict?
What is your most important coping skill?
If your house were burning, what three objects would you save?
Tell me about a time when you had to tell someone something unpleasant.
Ethical and current event questions are popular. However, be careful. Stay away from soapboxes. You don’t know the views of those who ask the question. Stick with general facts to show that you are well read.

How do you see the delivery of health care evolving in the twenty-first century?
What would you do if you were in a position to treat someone for an injury who had just stabbed your best friend?
How emotionally involved should a physician become with the health of his or her patients?
What is the most important ethical question that you will face as a physician in the next decade?
What are your opinions about physician assisted suicide/stem cell research/genetic testing/other controversial current topics?
If you could spend one hour with the President of the United States, what would you want to discuss with him?
Some questions are designed to find out how much first hand knowledge you have of your chosen profession. (Hint: you need a lot!)

Tell me about your volunteer experiences.
What clinical experiences have you had?
Tell me about the patient from whom you learned the most.
What percentage of your time do you anticipate devoting to basic research and clinical medicine?
Where do you see healthcare in 20 years?
Some questions are designed to relate your skills and personality type to what is required in the field.

What do you think is the most important quality a doctor/dentist/OT/PT should have?
What three traits do you possess that you are most proud of?
When you experience the death of a patient, is it something that you will take with you, or will you leave it at the hospital when you go home?
What kind of fulfillment do you expect from patient contact?
What do you have to offer your fellow medical students?

The following are actual questions at several health profession school interviews:

What would you do if all medical schools in America were to close today?
What do you want to be doing in 10 years?
Do you think it’s important for people to know two languages?
What good qualities have you seen in doctors, and what bad qualities have you seen?
What is something your mother would say about you, and what is something your best friend would say about you?
Know your personal statement: a lot of discussion can come from this.
Should an uncooperative patient receive more or less time than a cooperative patient?
Rate your humility on a scale from 1-10.

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