What exactly are the interviewers looking for during the assessment?

Each medical school will have defined the behaviours, attributes and values that are important for a medical professional and, maybe, some that are specific to their medical school. However, below we have outlined common areas that interviewers are likely to be looking for.

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  • Demonstrates self-motivation and perseverance when challenges arise
  • Responds in a calm manner, and able to work effectively, when faced with a difficult situation
  • Puts in place effective strategies to cope with pressure inside and outside work
  • Adapts approach accordingly when dealing with changes in circumstance or demands
  • Is open to trying new ways of doing things
  • Seeks support as appropriate when dealing with difficult or demanding situations
  • Demonstrates an awareness of the need to provide the highest standards of care to improve health and well-being (NHS Value 3 & 4)
  • Demonstrates an awareness of the diversity of people with whom they will be working and an understanding of the differing needs and priorities (NHS Value 2 & 5)
  • Understands the importance of patient-centred care and putting the patient first in all that they do (NHS Value 1)
  • Demonstrates commitment and motivation to following the career path
  • Shows passion, drive and enthusiasm for the role
  • Exhibits a realistic perception of the tasks and responsibilities of being a doctor
  • Actively engages individuals in open dialogue, through the use of open-ended and exploratory questions
  • Demonstrates active listening and effective use of non-verbal behaviour
  • Clearly and accurately communicates information
  • Adapts style of communication to suit the context and individual's needs
  • Demonstrates the ability to negotiate and influence others as appropriate
  • Confirms understanding through seeking verification and/or summarising information
  • Is able to view situations from the perspective of others (NHS Value 2)
  • Is non-judgemental when interacting with others (NHS Value 2)
  • Seeks to create a safe and trusting atmosphere, through showing a genuine interest and building rapport (NHS Value 4)
  • Demonstrates an inclusive approach, considering issues relating to equality and diversity (NHS Value 2)
  • Demonstrates empathy, understands and responds to the emotions and feelings of others, e.g. acknowledging or reflecting feelings (NHS Value 4)
  • Demonstrates patience and understanding when dealing with others

ReflectionsReflection Exercise