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interviews

Exeter Medical School

Exeter was voted University of the Year in 2012. It is a prestigious Russell Group University.
Offers for interviews were sent out in letter form and were arriving on the weekend starting 16th November.
Successful candidates at the initial application stage will be invited to an interview which is designed to determine whether applicants have the non-academic qualities such as the communication skills, reflectiveness and empathy required to become a successful doctor.
“The interview is a structured process of approximately twenty minutes, using a predetermined scoring system. This is to help ensure that candidates receive as close to an identical experience as possible. On each interview day candidates will attend an introductory talk giving further details about the interview process prior to completing pre-interview exercises.’
Home/EU fee-paying interviewees will be asked to complete the following two pre-interview exercises, for which they have half an hour:
– Complete a written questionnaire, which aims to investigate a candidate’s commitment and motivation to study medicine or dentistry.
– Consider three scenarios, which centre upon contemporary ethical issues related to medicine or dentistry, and select one as the basis for their interview.

Why Exeter?
Exeter was voted University of the Year in 2012. It is a prestigious Russell Group University There are over 150 affiliated student societies. The Northcott Theatre is located on the campus of the university
Exeter University campus is very green and scenic, not all concrete and tightly packed like some university campuses. The campus is situated on the edge of the city within parkland which makes the whole place have a great atmosphere.
Exeter is a beautiful ancient city. First established by the Romans it has many beautiful ancient streets but has all the amenities of a modern city as well. It is located in Devon near many tourist areas.
Exeter Medical School uses a lot of PBL

Kings Medical Interviews

Kings uses both panel interviews and MMIs. The MMIs tend to be stations that have very similar questions as those asked at the panel interview The panel interviews usually have about 3 interviewers. You are asked to fill in a detailed form before hand and given an ethical scenario while waiting for your interview. At the interview you will be asked questions about your work experience and commitment to medicine, your Personal Statement and charity work, competence based questions and questions testing your knowledge about medical matters. At the end of the interview you are usually asked to discuss your ethical scenario.

Why Kings?
King’s College Medical School is the largest medical school in Europe and has facilities to match. As well as excellent research facilities it has a wide range of sports clubs. These include hockey, football, rugby, cricket, tennis and netball. Rowing takes place on the river Thames by Chiswick Bridge, 800m from the University of London boathouse. The Strand has a rifle range and Guy’s Campus has a swimming pool and
gym and many music, singing and dancing clubs. ‘I am very keen on contributing to student life and would like to join ————— club.’ is always a useful phrase to use.
There are many excellent libraries and the Hodgkin Library at Guys Campus is open twenty four hours a day As well as other medics you will be able to meet a diverse
group of students from many other countries studying many subjects – the humanities and arts as well as sciences. It is located in the heart of London – just under the new Shard, the tallest building in the UK. London is a varied, vibrant city with many museums, galleries and shows to enjoy. There is a diverse population with lots of inequalities in health, with wealthy areas along the river but with a lot of poverty around the teaching hospitals. The high immigrant population means you will be able to see many diseases such as sickle cell [Kings has the leading sickle cell unit in Europe] and TB. Having three campus sites increases this variety.
It uses mainly lecture base teaching with a strong emphasis on anatomy dissection and little PBL. PBL can be hit and miss with some PBL groups and facilitators being better than others. PBL often does not cover the whole syllabus and can leave gaps in knowledge. Students do get the opportunity to see patients with first years making GP visits within the first couple of months so although learning is traditional your interest in patients and their stories is also catered for. It repeatedly features as one of the top 25 universities in the World (QS World Rankings) having placed 21st in 2010. Kings has had a proud record of 10 Nobel Laureates in the staff and alumni of King’s who made major contributions to 19th-century science, medicine and public life in general. They include:
.James Maxwell, one of the world’s greatest physicists
• Florence Nightingale (1820-1910) founded the world’sfirst professional school of nursing at St Thomas’
Hospital in 1860
• Joseph Lister, Professor of Clinical Surgery at Kings from 1877 to 1893, introduced an antiseptic system which changed the practice of medicine and drastically reduced mortality rates from major operations.
Maurice Wilkins and Rosalind Franklin at Kings, made crucial contributions to the discovery of DNA’s structure in 1953, which Watson and Crick found invaluable. In their honour, today KCL has the Franklin-Wilkins building, the main part of the Waterloo Campus.

University of East Anglia

Each interview lasts approximately 50 minutes. Candidates will be invited to take part in an OSCE (Objective Structured Clinical Examination) style interview, also known as a Multiple Mini Interview. When candidates enter the interview section, they will find a series of booths, known as ‘stations’. There will be seven stations to circulate through, spending approximately 5 minutes at each station. There is one interviewer at each station. You will have a couple of minutes before each station when you are given a piece of paper with the question relating the next station. It is important to make use of this time and start planning your answer. There will be 6/7 other applicants rotating round the stations with you.
One scenario is usually an empathy scenario which may involve role play for example;
One of your tutorial group has not attended any of the teaching sessions for a week. Members of the group have tried to make contact on the phone but have not been able to get through. There is no reply to text messages that you have sent. You decide to call round to your friend’s flat (I’ll name this friend ‘Sam’) where you find them staring at a blank television screen.What are you going to do?
An ethical scenario is usually given remember it important to give a balanced answer mentioning all view points and arguments.
There is usually a station regarding the course and why you may be suited or not to the UEA curriculum
Why you rather than others interviewed should be chosen.
Competence based questions relating to subjects such as your leadership skills/team working abilities
Questions on work experience and motivation for medicine.
Questions testing candidates on their knowledge of the pros and cons of medicine.
Questions on extra curricular activities and evidence of caring and commitment to community.
Questions relating to topical issues.
The interview comprises of seven individual stations, each with a different interviewer. Each interviewer also gives an “Overall Impression” score. The Overall Impression score is averaged over the seven interviewers and the mean score is added to the other station scores as an 8th Station. Each station score is out of 12.
The advantage of MMIs is that you are scored separately for each station so that if one interviewer does not like you are say something silly at one station you have the possibility to make it up on the others. Remember as soon as one station is over forget it and start thinking about the next [you will be handed a piece of paper relating to the next station.] Timing is important – don’t waffle on and then run out of time so that you don’t get the major points across. [see my book Medical School Interviews All You Need To Know The Knowledge P94-101 re MMIs]

Why UEA
The Medical School is small and friendly [about 140 in a year]. They take pride in their staff: student ratio being 13:9 so maybe mention that. Each student has a Personal tutor, a PBL tutor and a GP tutor.
Modern medical school with modern facilities. The campus is supposed to be a fantastic, set in acres of Parkland with a large lake. Amazing award winning architecture, student accommodation has been voted one of the best. The beautiful Norfolk broads are adjacent and Norfolk Research Park and Norfolk Hospital are set next to the University.
The sports park has just been refurbished and has a gymnastics centre. ‘You’d be crazy not to take advantage of the sports facilities at UEA’ The Sports park is a huge multi million pound complex which includes a huge sports hall, outdoor athletic track, tennis courts, hockey pitches, 4G 7-a-side football pitches, an Olympic swimming pool, gym, climbing wall and dance and martial arts studios. Prices are fairly good for students to hire any of the facilities. Sports clubs run at UEA include American Football, Athletics, Golf, Climbing, Kayak, Rugby, Netball, Squash, Sailing and Badminton. If intense sport isn’t your thing then there’s cheerleading, Tai Chi, Yoga and Riding.’
‘With over 150 clubs and societies to join, the biggest indoor sports centre in Britain, all the amenities you could need on campus, excellent accommodation, a consistently high quality of teaching across all schools, and a huge range of courses, we think UEA offers an amazing student experience.’
It was voted no 1 in the NSS student satisfaction survey 2011!

Entertainment and Area
The city of Norwich contains some lovely historical buildings including Norwich Castle and Norwich Cathedral. There is an ancient market place, and the two shopping malls provide most things you could possibly need. This is before you even make it on to the high street!
As for entertainment, the Norwich Theatre Royal is a great place to see comedians, performances, and pantomimes..
Meanwhile, there is a great selection of music venues ranging from the Norwich Arts Centre to the Waterfront and on-site UEA LCR.
The LCR events on Tuesday nights, fancy dress Tuesday is reasonably priced at £3.50 and normal Saturday nights at £4.50; however tickets can sell out very quickly and often gig tickets are all sold out by the beginning of the term.
A well established student run Facebook group entitled ‘The spare LCR ticket group’ provides reselling of sold out club night and gigs tickets between students; the union encourages prices at face value or very little above.
The campus is centred around the main square, a wonderful space for initiations and lazing about on a summers day on the steps, and according to legend, the campus was designed so that no one building is more than 5 minutes from another. Unfortunately this is no longer the case due to expansion and new residences, but it remains compact and practical, located in a wonderful environment, overlooking the Norfolk Broads.
The Course
The University writes ‘We offer a PBL (Problem Based Learning) integrated curriculum supported by a comprehensive programme of lectures and seminars, with early and regular patient centred teaching in both primary and secondary care starting in week two of the course’
The course is much more practical than most medical schools. UEA will expect you to know about the advantages and disadvantages of PBL and why it would suit you. There is a lot of patient contact from the start, a whole day a week is spent in General Practice and talking to patients and your learning is much more relevant although you may feel you at times lack the basic science grounding.

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