How did the interview impress you?
What was the stress level of the interview?
0 = low, 10 = high
How you think you did?
0 = low, 10 = high
Select Questions & Recent Responses
"Keep being amazing!"
"Beyond the usual suggestions, I would add making 3rd or 4th years available to meet with applicants."
"Everything was fine for me.
However some people had interviews that were very close to lunch or during the tour and maybe that can be avoided in the future."
"Provide the locations of common interview spots"
"Provide a decent breakfast. I actually enjoyed having lots of free time, it gave me time to talk to current students and learn a lot from them"
"At least offering breakfast would still be nice."
"Nothing really. Maybe try to have each applicant be interviewed by faculty and student."
"Be a bit more flexible with sheduling interview dates; fill downtime with scheduled activities"
"Very cold - didn't provide many activities and weren't helpful when asked about info on class schedu"
"Give students a list of classes they could audit to fill downtime instead of hospital tours"
"More activities and please be nicer. Don't make us show up at 8:00 if we only have afternoon intervi"
"Have the interview date be a little more structured and please, please, PLEASE train your students a"
"I think creating a more cohesive tour would help a lot."
"Why do you do research? (Disclaimer: I have a ton of research experience)"
"Tell me more about your research."
"Very conversational, healthcare roles, activities, etc"
"Tell me about your background, i.e. your journey to America"
"If you had the chance to make your case to the admission committee, what would you say to them to convince them that they should accept you?"
"Why Harvard? Why didn't you apply to the HST Program?"
"What do you see yourself doing in 10 years?"
"Tell me about your family."
"Tell me more about...(insert activity)"
"What makes a good doctor?"
"It was very conversational. I guess we started by talking about my job and why I decided to go into that kind of work."
"I studied a bunch of interview questions listed by others on the Student Doctor Network, and I was prepared for every question they asked me. Low stress; mostly interested in what I've done and why."
"What were some of the challenges you encountered in your job as a ____."
"Specific questions about activities listed on AMCAS application, in the style of "tell me about your involvement in this organization/sport/lab.""
"Tell me about XX in your file."
"Tell me about yourself, tell me about your parents, tell me about X activity, what's your proudest accomplishment? why medicine? where do you see yourself in 10 years? What are some problems in healthcare? Why HMS? Anything else you want me to know? Any questions for me?"
"Have you experienced failure, no matter how hard you tried? How did you deal with it?"
"It really was just a conversation -- I can't even remember specific questions!"
"Tell me about yourself/ X activity from your file / research."
"Do you think that asking people to donate their tissue to a lab is coercive? (not in a stress interview kind of way: it makes sense based on my background)"
"Standard questions to learn more about you."
"Why did you get involved in HIV/AIDS volunteering?"
"Talk about a certain activity from your file that they chose"
"Tell me about your research in (X)."
"Tell me about band. "
"It's clear that the interviewers all went over my application very carefully. They asked very detailed questions regarding all that I had listed as activities, but it was by no means grilling."
"Can you tell me about your MCAT?"
"what'd you do outside the classroom your freshman year? (we basically went through my college + post-college experiences chronologically). "
"Tell me about your research."
"Tell me about how you got to [my small liberal arts college]. "
"chatted a bit about healthcare reform"
"tell me about yourself"
"What would you identify as a weakness in your application?"
"Where do you see yourself in 10-15 years?"
"Tell me about this research experience."
"How did you get involved in community service?"
"Describe your research experience -- give me your hypothesis, methodology and findings. "
"Why do you want to be a doctor?"
"What is the point of doing research on insect parasites? How is that going to help people? (I didn't really have an answer for this...)"
"I'm a non-traditional applicant, so I was asked questions specific to my life experiences (both interviewers had access to my AMCAS application)."
"How did you get involved in [X]activity?"
"Tell me about AMCAS activity XYZ."
"Tell me about your undergraduate school. (Mine was a bit non-standard.)"
"My second interviewer asked me a couple of generic ethical scenarios (to transplant or not to transplant); what did study in school and why; talk about your research; talk about your extracurricular activities"
"What would you like me to tell the committee that (1) you didn't tell the other interviewer, and (2) you didn't mention in your application?"
"What makes you unique?"
"What was your childhood like?"
"Why did you go to Morehouse?"
"What was your most rewarding endeavor in college?"
"What will be the most difficult thing to overcome in the next four years?"
"Tell me about yourself?"
"What direction do you think adolescent medicine is heading in?"
"Are you an activist?"
"So what did that experience/school leave you with?"
"who are you? why are you here? what do you want to do? "
"Most of the questions were specific to my application"
"What are you doing now?"
"Tell me about some experiences that made you want to practice medicine."
"Tell me about you...Why medicine?"
"Tell me about X on the AMCAS - including a few questions about really obscure courses that I took Freshman year - the importance of those (which was not really much)"
"Tell me about your father and any research he has done"
"Tell me about your research. The first doctor asked only about my current research. The second doctor asked about both my current and my undergrad research projects."
"Tell me about where you grew up."
"Why ____ (school i attend)?"
"talk about your experience working with groups"
"Tell me about your family..."
"Where do you see yourself in 10 years?"
"Tell me about your research"
"Tell me about your background and how your majors tie into medicine"
"What was the most valuable experience you had in college?"
"What do you think of socialized medicine? "
"What is the difference between an MBA and an MPP?"
"Tell me about (book) and your (class)? "
"What is the difference between the two positions you've held in company X?"
"Why do you want to go into medicine?"
"What would you contribute to the small group discussions at Harvard? (small group discussions are part of the PBL style)"
"Tell me about yourself."
"Can you explain the trend in your undergraduate grades? - the interviewer was definitely looking for ways to defend me in front of a committee"
"Both interviewers seemed to want to know a lot about my family and childhood, so the early questions were very much focused on that."
"What are your faults?"
"How do you think people on the West and East coast are different?"
"Nice tie. Did you buy it esp? (crimson colors) Then he suggested I get a couple of other ones when i go to UNC and Columbia....(all in good humor, he knew the school i was interviewing at for Dental SChool)"
"Are you arrogant? (Same person who asked if I was anal) I'm not, but will someone really believe you if you say no to this question?"
"Why Harvard? Followed by how does that make us different from other schools? I hated this question because I thought the same thing while I was preparing for the question."
"Why'd you choose to do research instead of a clinical opportunity in your year off?"
"They asked about my entire family, sibling by sibling, asking what everyone does, and where they went to school. They ask very good questions to get to know who you are."
"What are your hobbies?"
"What was the last book you read?"
"What is the most challenging thing you've dealt with?"
"Where do you see yourself in 10 years? Do you have any specific field you are interested in?"
"Describe some of the problems in health care that are most troubling to you."
"Be prepared for a possible clinical scenario from faculty."
"Why do you think Harvard's PBL and small group learning is a good fit for you?"
"A clarification question about a blemish on my transcript."
"Tell me about how your mother's sacrifices affected you?"
"Why is there so much inequality in health care delivery, even in Boston?"
"What is something about yourself that you are proud of?"
"In one interview (with a researcher), we talked very in depth about my research project and its applications. He asked me to discuss the pros/cons of using a particular approach over another. I have never been asked such engaging questions about my research, so I enjoyed it!"
"Is there anything that you have heard that makes you think less of Harvard? Anything you don't like?"
"What are some of the differences between the US and Canadian health care systems?"
"Do you think humanistic and scientific inquiry are two dichotomous modes of thinking?"
"Where do you live on campus?"
"My student interviewer and I started talking about how the style of baroque music mirrors the style of other art and architecture in that time period. "
"Is there anything else you would like me to know about you that we haven't talked about?"
"What does your mother/father/sister/brother do? (jobs)"
"General discussion of undervaluing of public health in U.S. Felt more like exchange of ideas than interview."
"Give me two words to describe how you participate in groups"
"What would you do if you couldn't go to medical school or do anything related to science or medicine? "
"What do your parents do for a living, your sisters, your husband? (I just thought it was odd to start off my interview about me this way...)"
"There was nothing too out-of-the-ordinary, or difficult... both of my interviews began with them asking me to just talk about myself, and the rest of the conversation was completely tailored to my application, with them asking me about different experiences on my AMCAS"
"What do you want in a medical school?"
"From the recent experiences you've had shadowing doctors, what problems have you observed in our health care system and what do you think we can do about them?"
"Do you think that asking people to donate their tissue to a lab is coercive?"
"Do you think that HIV education in Africa really makes a difference without tackling the underlying cultural difference? Without sustained presence, does a short term program do any good?"
"All questions were down to earth, intended to truly get to know you."
"A lot about my opinions on American culture/society which were very interesting."
"What was one thing you failed at and how has this made you more prepared for medicine?"
"Give an example of a rewarding experience"
"What are the biggest strengths and weaknesses in healthcare today?"
"Long talk about my research"
"How do you like Philadelphia? (my interviewer and I had spent several years in the same city)"
"What do you think of ''The Sound and the Fury''? (after I mentioned how much I enjoyed a seminar course on Faulker)"
"Nothing really. Mainly about my files."
"What do you want the epitaph on your gravestone to say?"
"Not really a question, but we got into an interesting discussion of various healthcare systems around the world"
"What was hospital care like from a patient's perspective?"
"What are you looking for in a medical school? "
"What are some trends in medical education that you've seen at other schools? "
"Nothing really interesting."
"What is the role of women in medicine and how has it changed?"
"Is there anything you did not get to do in college that you would have liked to do?"
"Very laid back. One interviewer wanted to talk about AMCAS activities and the other wanted to talk about me as a person. Awesome people who really wanted to make me feel at home. "
"Pretty straight-forward stuff."
"You mentioned [insert phrase from AMCAS application]. What did you mean by this?"
"All questions about my specific application and interests."
"The really was no interesting question. I think the interview was more about getting to know me more (talking about my activities...my experiences....what sets me apart from the other applicants)"
"Why did you get involved in community service so early as a freshman? Was that what people at your school do for a social life?"
"I'm a non-traditional applicant, so it was specific to my life experiences."
"If you could go back to school, what are three courses you would take?"
"What do you like to do to wind down in your free time?"
"Why don't minorities go to psychiatrists?"
"Why didn't you talk about why you wanted to do medicine in your personal statement?"
"A patient comes in and complains of trouble breathing. You tell the patient that there is a problem with her heart and you would like to admit her to the hospital. Name some characteristics that she, as a patient, would be looking for in you, her doctor."
"none, it was all just a conversation -- "tell me about yourself""
"What do you think is the most interesting thing about yourself?"
"What do you think could have been done better? (I was talking about watching a patient's mother being told about her daughter's paralysis)."
"How do you think you will have impacted the practice of medicine 20 years from now?"
"Where else have you gotten in so far? Tell me about the program there. "
"Has Montreal recovered since 1976? (Im from there)"
"What has been the most negative moment in your life? What has been teh most positive?"
"Tell me about your participation in a sexual assault victim advocacy program."
"None. Very open."
"Should IVF be covered by Medicaid?"
"What career would you pursue if not medicine?"
"Is there anything about yourself that is not included in your application. That seemed to be as interesting as it got."
"Who do you think is more important to impress, your girlfriend's mother or father?"
"None were particularly interesting. The questions were pretty basic, pertaining mostly to my undergrad and post-undergrad activities."
"Do you think that doctors in academia are better than non-academic physicians?"
"Tell me how reading _________ affected your perception of health care and/or healing? "
"In depth research question"
"Would you tell a terminally ill patient the stark reality of their condition or be optimistic?"
"what do you feel are problems in the field that you are going into (psychiatry)? this led to an ethical discussion of various situations i have encountered"
"The interviews are meant to be open file, but my faculty interviewer received my application right before the interview so it was semi-closed. My student interviewer had definitely reviewed my file before hand and had very specific and interesting personal questions, but they were all related to things I had written about or experiences I had."
"This interview was for HST. Most interesting question was what would I do if I suspected a colleague and good friend of stealing painkillers from the hospital?"
"One interviewer showed me the rating sheet and asked me what score I thought I should get on each topic. The other asked me a very detailed question about my research that I would not have expected him to get from a 5 min blurb... watch out because they are sharp."
"What are the problems with healthcare today and how do you fix it?"
"What is your greatest fear about attending our program (the HST program)?"
"So why exactly is the HIV/AIDS situation in Botswana so serious eventhough it is an ecomically stable African nation?"
"What would be the hardest thing to give up if you decided to come to Boston for school?"
"Standard questions specific to the choice of a career in medicine. Nothing to stump you. very conversational."
""How about those women in combat. How do you feel about that?""
"Several scenario type questions relating to group learning and also an ER case "
"All the questions were typical. Why medicine? Tell me about your family."
"why did you choose a non-science major?"
"Who are your role models in medicine?"
"Do you like politics?"
"nothing stands out"
"How do you think your past experiences have prepared you for being a good physician? (i've been out of school for a number of years)"
"Nothing in particular - some interesting ones as my application got probed in depth, but they were specific to my file."
"During World War II, President Roosevelt came to MGH for a checkup. His physician, Dr. Lahey, found that he had extremely high blood pressure and had had several mini-strokes which may have impaired his judgement. Roosevelt told Lahey to keep the matter confidential. If you were Dr. Lahey, what would you do, given that Roosevelt was about to go to Yalta to divide up Europe with Stalin and Churchill?"
"Since I had traveled around a lot, I got a lot of questions during my interview about my impressions of different places compared to others."
"If I were to ask your father what are you three best and worst qualities what would he say? "
"So I see that you have some great grades...are you anal or something? (No joke)"
"Both interviewees asked about a traumatic experience I mentioned in my personal statement."
"If an Admissions committee member met your mom on the street, how would she describe you?"
"The interview was by far my most positive of the four schools I've interviewed with thus far. The students are all very nice, very down to earth, and extremely helpful. Harvard treast their students very well, providing excellent housing, and a program that is second to none. My interview was with the dean of Admissions, and was very positive. We talked for over an hour, mostly about books, life, etc. I think we both got to know eachother very well, and ir was an extremely pleasurable experience. "
""Tell me about the ethical cases you have been asked at other interviews and lets see how I do on them." - My interviewer wanted to be quizzed"
"I had a lot of questions about my research, which were probably the most interesting ones."
"How would you fix the present health care system?"
"Pretty standard. My first interviewer was in the medical education department, with a Ph.D in education. She was very friendly and had thoroughly reviewed my file, so she asked me a few education-type questions (I did lots of tutoring and mentoring) and other questions pertinent to my file. The second interviewer hadn't read my file, so he asked things to get to know me."
"What would you tell your mother if she voiced her concern about you possibly contracting HIV from a needle-stick?"
"Lots of great ones by my student interviewer: Hypothetical questions about health care access, education...but don't worry these all pertained to my application. Just a really good conversation."
"What talent do you have that you could contribute to the second year show?"
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