January 25, 2020
The Multiple Mini Interview: Everything You Need to Know
Learn the Format, Sample Questions, and More
The Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) is an admissions tool used by various professional healthcare schools across the world. Medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, physical therapy, and many other fields conduct the MMI as a means to score potential professional school candidates. Medical schools and medical residency programs have been leading the charge at implementing the MMI.
As a way of probing deeper into a student’s character, the Multiple Mini Interview is designed to test applicants on their aptitude for the medical profession through a series of short interviews. Interviews test the applicant on their communication skills, ethics, professionalism, critical thinking abilities, and more. Each “mini-interview” is scores individually. Performance on one MMI station does not effect future or previous stations.
A typical MMI interview usually lasts for two hours, with approximately ten small interviews within that duration. Applicants cycle through interviewers who test them in various scenarios until the process is complete.
The MMI interview is a crucial step for admission to any healthcare profession. For medical schools, it plays an equally important role in your acceptance as your GPA, supplementary application, and MCAT scores. The MMI Interview is the best chance for a candidate to shine.
First developed by McMaster University Medical School, the MMI’s goal was to replace the flawed traditional interview method. Unlike a conventional interview, where one interviewer questions the applicant for 40 minutes to 1 hour, the MMI subjects the applicant to multiple mini interviews. This allows for better consistency and more rigorous observation.
The idea behind the MMI interview is this: by having several interviewers grade the applicant, it eliminates any individual bias one person may have and enables a more objective perspective on the applicant’s abilities.
Healthcare professionals are essential to our society, so schools must know that they’re admitting the most professional, empathetic, humanistic, and thoughtful students possible. Having stellar grades isn’t enough for many of these fields; one must also show that they’re a well-rounded person, capable of caring for their patients.
While this is a difficult characteristic to quantify, the MMI interview tries its best to do so.
What Is the MMI Interview Format?
The MMI varies slightly depending on the healthcare profession, but in this guide, we’ll be using the field of medicine. This information is still applicable to most healthcare fields. The MMI takes place on the school’s campus in a specialized area where students can quickly move between stations.
Each station contains an interviewer (and sometimes an additional examiner), who can be an actor, medical student, or member of faculty. The interviewers test the applicant on various scenarios for approximately ten minutes, then a bell rings, and the applicant moves onto the next interviewer.
This rapid sequence is called the MMI circuit, which has students alternate between interviewers quickly during the MMI duration. The unique experiences that a student will face during this test is one of the main reasons why MMI practice is so essential.
The content of stations varies depending on the type of interview. Stations involve:
- Group exercises
- Standard interview prompts
- Actors who play out dramatic scenarios to which the applicant must respond
- Behavioural questioning
Each station is designed to test a specific strength. For example, an actor might play a patient whose family member just died, and it’s the applicant’s job to break the news. A scenario like this would test empathy, strength and professionalism.
Other scenarios are more standard and can involve ethical dilemmas or open-ended philosophical questions to test the applicant’s critical thinking abilities and intelligence.
Ultimately, it’s very difficult to be fully prepared for the MMI interview. The best thing to do is to practice as many scenarios as possible and conduct mock interviews.
When preparing for the MMI, it’s crucial to focus on your behavior, such as eye contact, body language, tone of voice, and even what you wear. Interviewers won’t just be so much looking at your answers, but grading how good you’ll be at your future job as a doctor or other healthcare professional.
What Are Some Common Multiple Mini Interview Questions?
MMI Interview questions can range from standard interview prompts to elaborate on patient-practitioner scenarios. The goal of all MMI questions is to have the applicant display the same characteristics that are required of a healthcare professional in the field.
Here are a few examples of multiple mini interview medical school questions that you may encounter:
A physician developed a relationship with a patient who initiated the relationship and consented. Is it ethical for the physician to become sexually involved?
Questions like these test the ethical compass of a candidate and are highly important for a future doctor to know. For this question, the answer is clearly no. Sexual relationships between patients and practitioners constitute sexual abuse under Canadian law.
The prime minister asked for your advice on one major change that would be applied to the Canadian healthcare system. What do you answer, and why?
Open-ended questions like these give insight into the applicant’s critical thinking and analytical abilities. One should approach these questions with thoughtful answer and a meaningful and logical explanation for the pros and cons of that answer. Additionally, if time allows, you should also present alternative solutions.
An independent 17-year-old boy that’s married and has a child wants to participate in a medical research study. Does he require his parent’s permission?
A question like this is designed to test your critical thinking and to determine if you understand the nuances of a delicate situation. You should state the obvious legalities, but also determine if the student is emancipated, whether they are fit to make such a decision, and discuss other relevant circumstances.
How does the Canadian healthcare system compare to the system in both Britain and the United States?
Comparison questions test an applicant’s ability to recall the specific facets of recognized healthcare systems while also challenging them to analyze the pros and cons of each system. Be prepared to answer questions that may require you to understand healthcare beyond the traditional universal Canadian system.
The MMI may even ask questions unrelated to medicine, including:
What are your thoughts on the effects of media on society?
The goal of this type of question is to help the admissions committee evaluate whether you are a well-rounded person, someone that actively thinks about societal issues and those around them. Schools want doctors who are well-developed personally and professionally and have a broad perspective on global issues.
Effective Multiple Mini Interview Practice Starts With MedApplications
Practicing for the MMI medical interview is very difficult, as it’s impossible to know what questions you’ll be asked. Even if you knew the questions, half the battle is being able to present yourself in a professional way.
To be prepared for the Multiple Mini Interview, It’s simply not enough to rehearse your answers or read through possible questions. The best way to get ready for the MMI is to go through rehearsals with medical professionals who have already been through the process.
MedApplications’ team of professional physicians have MMI experience working with every major medical school across North America. We will guide you through your MMI, step-by-step, and provide helpful feedback along the way. See your improvement with MMI rubrics, detailed feedback and expert advice. Have a specific medical school or professional health program in mind? No problem. You’ll be paired with a doctor or consultant directly from your dream medical school, dental school or healthcare professional program.
Rehearse the MMI online via video call with our team of physicians or in-person MMI training. There’s no better way to calm your nerves for the MMI than to practice it with our team of experts.
Don’t leave it to chance, sign up today, and we’ll help you improve your performance on the MMI and get accepted into the school of your dreams.
Our Unique MMI Coach Matching Process: The MedApplications Difference
When you sign on with MedApplications for MMI preparation coaching and assistance, you will be carefully matched with the right MMI physician expert for your specific needs. After all, there are many different health specialties and programs, so we go the extra distance to ensure your coach is well-versed in your particular health discipline and possesses helpful insights into your intended medical school and their admissions adjudication process.
To ensure MMI success, you’ll be paired with an expert MedApplications physician coach who deeply understands the MMI from the perspective of your health discipline, specific school and academic background.
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