George Washington University PA Interview Questions
Advice & Insight From PA Application Specialists
General Interview Information
Georgetown University’s PA program is highly competitive, with an acceptance rate of only 6%. In order to apply, you must have completed your bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0/ You need to have prerequisite courses in anatomy and physiology (one semester of anatomy and two of physiology), chemistry (two semesters) psychology (one semester) and statistics (one semester). You must also have sat the GRE and have at least 1000 hours of patient contact.
Interview Format for Physician Assistant Studies at George Washington University
The interview process at George Washington includes a tour of the Foggy Bottom campus, an MMI (Multiple Mini Interview) made up of ten seven minute stations, and a panel discussion with current students and alumni. The interview process is ‘designed to evaluate each candidate’s communication skills, maturity level, match to the GW mission, and his or her understanding of the role of the PA in today’s healthcare environment.’ Before each interview you will be given time to read the scenario or the question.
The application verification deadline is October 1, meaning that you ought to have submitted your application at least four weeks before (i.e. by September 1st) to ensure that your application is verified in time. You must ensure that you have also completed the GW supplemental application and that you have your GRE scores by the same dates. Interviews are generally held on two dates in September, one in October, and one in November.
Sample & Recent Interview Questions
You should expect questions to cover the following areas: communication skills, maturity level, match to the GW mission, and understanding of the role of the PA in today’s healthcare environment. Additionally, there will be one standard scenario that will ask you to discuss with the interviewer why you have chosen to pursue a career as a PA. Two scenarios below are drawn from GWU’s application information.
- Cheung recommends homeopathic medicines to his patients. There is no scientific evidence or widely accepted theory to suggest that homeopathic medicines work, and Dr. Cheung doesn’t believe them to. He recommends homeopathic medicine to people with mild and non-specific symptoms such as fatigue, headaches and muscle aches, because he believes that it will do no harm, but will give them reassurance. Consider the ethical problems that Dr. Cheung’s behavior might pose. Where do you stand on the topic of euthanasia?
- A man comes to your office and requests that he is allowed to see his wife’s notes, as he is worried for her health but she isn’t giving him any information about her condition. How do you proceed?
- Imagine another student encouraged you to cheat. What would you do?
- What would you do if one of the doctors in your team shirked their responsibilities repeatedly, leaving those same responsibilities to you instead?
- Imagine that you find a junior doctor looking through confidential patient’s notes that have nothing to do with their role. You realise that the notes are those of someone that they knew from medical school. How do you react in this situation?
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- Please describe a situation in which you had to rely on your communication skills to succeed.
- Please describe how communication skills can allow one to show compassion more easily.
- You are working in a busy ER and a patient becomes aggravated, screaming at others in the waiting room. You are tasked with calming the patient down and trying to understand the situation.
- Parking Garage (Communication Skills). The parking garage at your place of work has assigned parking spots. On leaving your spot, you are observed by the garage attendant as you back into a neighboring car, a BMW, knocking out its left front headlight and denting the left front fender. The garage attendant gives you the name and office number of the owner of the neighboring car, telling you that he is calling ahead to the car owner, Tim. The garage attendant tells you that Tim is expecting your visit. How do you proceed?
- Would you describe yourself as mature? Why?
- What does maturity mean to you?
- What life experiences stand out to you in your personal and professional lives and what have you learnt from them?
Match to the GW Mission
- Do you think that our program fits your learning style?
- What values and attributes do you consider to be particularly important, and how do you believe that these align with those of the program here?
Understanding of the role of the PA
- What does a Physician Assistant do? How does their role and scope of practice differ to that of a doctor?
- How does a physician associate’s role differ from that of a nurse practitioner?
- What is a dependent practitioner?
- Why have you chosen to pursue a career as a PA?