MMI Prioritisation Tasks: The Complete Guide

Advice & Insight From Interview Specialists

What are MMI Prioritisation Tasks?

MMI Prioritisation Tasks test the ability of candidates to complete a range of time and resource limited tasks. For example candidates may be asked to choose a select number of items from a specified list (in relation to a specific overall task), or alternatively candidates may be required to outline the order in which they would complete a specified number of medical/non-medical tasks.

There is often no specific baseline knowledge required to complete these tasks, nor are there any specific ‘right answers’. Instead it is about offering a systematic, well-reasoned and well-planned answer.

How To Prepare For Prioritisation Tasks?

Our MMI Question Bank and MMI Course Guide contain a number of MMI Prioritisation Tasks with example answers. Practice these example scenarios with professional interviewers at our MMI Interview Courses, in order to accurately reflect the interview setting.

Additionally, practice implementing our 5 Step Approach to Prioritisation Tasks on a daily basis as you create a ‘to-do list’ and attempt to verbalise and justify the order in which you would complete these tasks.

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MMI Prioritisation Task Tips

5 Step Approach to Prioritisation Tasks – The majority of prioritisation tasks do not have any specific right or wrong answers; instead examiners are looking for a methodical, systematic approach with well justified answers. For further information, attend an MMI Interview Course or review the MMI Question Bank.

​Always Justify Your Answers – Whilst the scenario may only request you to advise 5 out of 15 items, it is essential not to fall into the trap of limiting your answers to just this information. Well justified answers, including why you chose the specific items, as well as potentially why you did not choose the other items will help you immensely to stand out from other medical school applicants. 

Consider The Specific Scenario – The items you would choose from a specified list will vary from case to case, even if the list of items remains exactly the same. For example, if the specific scenario was based in the antarctic, a thermal coat would be far more useful than if the scenario was based in the Sahara desert. Hence, make sure that you make each of your justifications as specific to the scenario rather than mentioning pre-rehearsed justifications. 

Avoid Common Pitfalls – The most common pitfall amongst students is to rush in to answering the scenario without due planning. This is obvious for interviewers to see, with candidates often stuttering after stating their first couple of items, or even having to ask the interviewer which items they have already mentioned. Successful medical students and doctors implement thoughtful, systematic approaches. Similarly, before you start talking,ensure that you take a minute to plan your answer and are aware of the order in which you intend to complete the task, or 5 items you wish to choose, before commencing your answer.

What Am I Being Assessed On In MMI Prioritisation Tasks?

​MMI Prioritisation Tasks are testing three core domains. The first is a methodical, well planned approach such as the 5 Step Approach to Prioritisation Tasks. The second is safe practice; for example, whilst there are no right an wrong answers per se, it would be unsafe and clinically negligent to review a patient with back pain before a patient having a cardiac arrest. Hence, it’s essential to ensure that all decisions are clinically justifiable and consistent with the actions taken by a medical professional. Finally, in prioritisation tasks it is as much about what you say as how you say it. Confident and competent communication skills are essential to succeed in MMI Prioritisation Tasks.

The BlackStone Tutors MMI Prioritisation Task Mark Scheme is available to candidates attending an MMI Interview Course with past medical school interview mark schemes also included in the MMI Course Guide.

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MMI Prioritisation Tasks Example Scenarios

You are an FY2 Junior Doctor on a medical ward and you required to leave hospital in 30 minutes to collect your unwell child from school. Outline the order in which you would complete the following five tasks:

  1. You have agreed to meet your registrar to discuss changes to the medical rota
  2. A ward nurse calls you regarding a 57 year old gentleman who is complaining of left sided chest pain.
  3. The pharmacist has bleeped you regarding a possible medication error that you had signed for.
  4. A family member has requested to speak to you to discuss the progress of their relative
  5. Your phone alarm rings with a reminder to purchase flowers for your wife, as it is your wedding anniversary.

Model Answer
Click Here (Available to MMI Question Bank Subscribers)
​You are about to embark on an eight hour drive with your three young children in order to visit your aunt, who lives in the countryside. Choose 5 of the 10 items to take with you on your journey

Glass Mirror
£1,000 cash
Chalk and chalk board
Spare mobile phone
Portable TV
Tennis ball
Plastic Container

Model AnswerClick Here (Available to MMI Question Bank Subscribers)

Further Reading....

MMI Prioritisation Tasks: The Complete Guide

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