For each medical school, only about 10-15% of applicants are offered an interview each year, let alone placed on a waitlist. So, if you’re on a waitlist, you’re in rare company! It’s actually quite an accomplishment. Okay - sorry - we know that’s not much consolation. The waitlist is the medical school equivalent of “being in limbo,” so we’re sure you have lots of anxious questions. Let’s get them answered!
Have you recently interviewed at your dream medical school? Were you just placed on its waitlist? Is interview season over, and you’re still waiting to hear back from your top-choice program? If you answered “yes” to one or more of these questions, it’s likely time for you to write a letter of intent. This letter is quite high-stakes, so you want to get it right! This article will help you write an effective letter of intent that gets noticed and moves the needle.
Canceled MCATs; online coursework; in-person shadowing restrictions; virtual interviewing - COVID-19 undoubtedly shifted the medical school admissions process in 2020 and created unprecedented challenges for pre-meds. But how will it impact medical school admissions moving forward? What will COVID-19’s legacy be in the 2021-2022 cycle?
Now that medical school virtual interviews are underway, we’ve talked to some applicants who have interviewed already, so that we could pick their brains and share some insider tips with you. Hopefully these insider tips will give you the edge you need, or at least provide some much-needed comfort during this nerve-racking time.
Secondary application fees range anywhere from $75 to $150, averaging at $112.5. What if we told you that you could significantly improve your virtual interview appearance for less than a single secondary fee?
Once you submit your secondaries and the summer dies down, it's time to send update letters to the medical schools on your list! Confused about how to start? What to include? When to send them off? We're here to answer all of your pressing questions and help you craft a stellar update letter that gets noticed by medical schools.
The makers of the CASPer, Altus Assessments, have decided to create their own version of the AAMC Video Interview Tool for Admissions (VITA), so that they can cash in on this new market (even though they’re a bit late to the party). Now Altus will have two CASPer tests that it can charge applicants for. Maybe they should spell it CA$$$Per…
You might be wondering if there are any strategies that can give you an edge and help you crush the VITA. It’s smart to review the AAMC’s VITA guide, but we want to offer you some additional strategies that you might not be able to find elsewhere.
Even if you practice for the VITA until you’re blue in the face, it might feel like you’re alone in an echo chamber, with no objective way to gauge the quality of your responses. That’s why we wanted to place you in the position of the evaluator by showing you a sample VITA response and inviting you to participate in our critique. By seeing the negatives and positives of someone else’s sample, you can hopefully improve the quality of your own answers.
In the AAMC VITA, you will be presented with complex questions aiming to gauge your ability to address the AAMC pre-med competencies. Don’t panic quite yet! We’re here to cover some tips for how to ace your responses.
In last week’s post, we covered how to look your best on screen during virtual interviews, including wardrobe, lighting, and backdrop. Now we’re back with more tips to ensure that your virtual interview isn’t jeopardized by faulty technology.
The AAMC House of Horrors has instituted a definitely not new and probably not improved virtual interview tool (VITA), to be used as yet another way for medical schools to evaluate you. We’re here to answer all the questions about aesthetics and appearance that you’re dying to ask.
Imagine having to record an 18-minute speech about your qualifications for becoming a physician. Now imagine that speech being sent to all the medical schools you’re applying to, without being able to make any edits or start over. Sounds pretty terrifying, right? Well, that’s essentially how the new AAMC Video Interview Tool for Admissions (VITA) is going to work… more or less.
It was recently announced that two medical schools - University of California Davis School of Medicine and University of Minnesota Medical School Twin Cities - will be participating in the AAMC’s pilot Situational Judgment Test (SJT). If you’re applying to either or both of these schools, you probably have a lot of questions: Is the pilot test mandatory? Will the test affect my admissions chances? What kinds of questions will be asked? We’re here to help get those questions answered!
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In an MMI, you’ll never be able to fully predict the questions you receive, so the best you can do is have strategies and frameworks that you can continuously draw upon.
“People are a hundred times more interested in themselves and their wants and problems than they are in you and your problems.” This excerpt from Dale Carnegie’s book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, is not a condemnation of people as self-absorbed jerks. He’s merely pointing out a very important fact about networking - the secret skill that separates average pre-meds from standout ones.
I want you to take a look at these three faces and tell me whom you’d choose to be your doctor, based on appearance alone:
Making a good first impression at your medical school interview is vital, but it’s only half the battle! Just like physicians with their patients, you not only have to instill confidence and trust right away, but maintain those feelings throughout the conversation.
Marathons suck. The first few miles feel like a stampede, as the hordes of runners jostle for position. If you’re lucky, the next few miles go well, but by the end of the race, your body breaks down and the pain becomes intolerable.
How long does it take you to answer, “why medicine?” - Go ahead and try it. Time yourself if you’d like. Go on. I’ll wait.
Pre-meds tend to have a lot of substance. They spend hundreds of hours helping patients in the hospital, countless more volunteering for good causes, and even devote themselves, unpaid, to developing research that benefits humanity.
In my new video, I’m sharing the six tips I use with my pre-med students for writing a better Thank You note. I can’t guarantee that yours will be plastered to the wall of the person you’re thanking, but I promise it will make your thank you notes more sincere.
If you’re like most pre-meds, you’ve used Rate My Professors to determine the right instructors for those important pre-reqs and easy-A electives.
Is there a perfect way to prepare for the Western Michigan phone interview? Probably not. But that doesn’t mean you should just wing it completely.
Warning! Warning! There’s a dangerously adaptive, highly resistant viral outbreak in your vicinity. It’s up to you, and a small courageous team of healthcare professionals, to isolate and nullify the threat.
IMAGINE YOU’RE THE PRESIDENT OF MARSOn the big day, you enter the first MMI station and shake the interviewer’s hand. After some pleasantries, the interviewer presents the prompt. You take a deep breath and focus:
My friend begins every trip to Vegas at the roulette table, throwing down a chunk of chips on black or red. “Let’s just see what happens,” he says.
The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) has published a list of 30+ questions to at your medical school interview. That’s right - easy peasy lemon squeezy - just memorize those questions and recite them at the end of your interview, and you’ll be a shoe-in.
In his famous book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie calls for an attitude adjustment, a shift in your perspective as a communicator. And we think you should heed his advice during your medical school interview, especially towards the end when you get to ask the interviewer questions.
Oh good, we’re glad to see you’re making your travel checklist for your medical school interview.
You’re about to walk into your first MMI station, and you can feel the interview jitters coming on. Before you enter the room, you’re given a prompt and have two minutes to take notes and gather your thoughts. Piece of cake, right?
You may have heard that there's a new test required by a growing list of medical schools: the CASPer. The spread of its use has been fairly fast. A few years ago, it was only required by Tulane and New York Medical College (in the US), and now the list is 20 schools strong and growing.
Even if you’re one of the rare pre-meds who isn’t fazed by interview anxiety (well la dee da!), you can go from a good interview to a great interview by using our tips below.
Your Achilles heel. Your hamartia. Your kryptonite. The fatal flaw, the chink in the armor, the tragic foible, the blemish on your otherwise impeccable character.
Last week we explained the The 5 Necessary Factors for Getting into Medical School, but what about the cherries on top? The X-factors? What are the ways you can elevate your application from average to extraordinary?
The interview is possibly the most stressful part of the application process. As someone who recently went to a half-dozen interviews (both MD and DO), I wanted to share the eight tips - from least important to most - that helped me succeed in the interview.
During interview preparation, pre-meds scramble to research every possible question or scenario they might encounter. They practice and rehearse their answers over and over again, in hopes of eliminating verbal tics and finding that perfect pace and delivery.But crafting and delivering your verbal response is only half the battle.
“So, Your Name Here, go ahead and tell us your thoughts on the Affordable Care Act. How can we improve the healthcare system in the United States?”
Most pre-meds start preparing for their interview a few weeks before their actual interview at a medical school. If you’re adept at talking to strangers and feel comfortable thinking on your feet, this approach will work just fine for you.In our experience, though, most pre-meds aren’t. Many pre-meds lack the basic skills to succeed in the interpersonal interview (to say nothing of the MMI). Others COULD be good interviewers but get undermined by a lack of confidence or a surfeit of anxiety.