University of Sunderland Medicine Interview Questions

Advice & Insight From Interview Specialists

General Interview Information

The University of Sunderland Medical School invited 303 students to interview for its first year, 2019. Of these 303 students, 191 were made offers. 142 accepted their offer.

Standard Interview Format

The interview is typically made up of ten stations in an MMI (Multiple Mini Interview) format. Of these stations, nine will be assessed. One station will be a video station. The interview is designed to get the best out of students, and staff are encouraged to be friendly and welcoming. The entire selection day process will last around two hours, including an initial welcome, the MMI, a numeracy test, and a debrief afterwards.

There will be a degree of academic knowledge assessed during the questions, which is pitched at the level of AS, so should be relatively straightforward. Some stations will be one-to-one, others might have an actor or other person to interact with, or a pair of assessors.

In the interview stations, you will be assessed on a range of skills and aptitudes. These are highlighted as being:


  • Motivation/experiences informing your decision to pursue a medical career
  • Empathy and insight
  • Responsibilities and challenges of being a doctor
  • Awareness of ethical issues in health and society
  • Resilience in the face of difficult situations
  • Comprehension
  • Effective communication
  • What have you done in the community?

In addition, each candidate must complete a numeracy test which will assess ability to perform ‘clinically relevant calculations.’ This test is pass or fail. The questions are designed to be simple enough that one does not need to be studying Maths at AS, rather the questions can be completed with the combination of thought / problem solving and simple mathematics. The time pressure of half an hour is designed to ensure that students work fast.

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Before the Interview

Prior to the interview, you should particularly make sure that you are confident on your work experience, communication and leadership skills, and have reflected on these areas. Ensure that you have covered the General Medical Council’s Good Medical Practice guidance. You should also be confident on the main pillars of medical ethics, and read up on current healthcare news. The Student BMJ is a great resource, and you should also pay attention to reputable ‘broadsheet’ newspapers or the BBC Healthcare news.

Exemplar & Recent Interview Questions

Motivation/experiences informing your decision to pursue a medical career
Why are you interested in becoming a doctor?
What do you think are the most challenging parts of being a doctor?
Why do you want to be a doctor rather than a dentist?
What are some of the qualities that all good doctors must have?
What sources do you use to keep on top of healthcare news?
Tell me about your work experience.
What part of your work experience did you find most surprising?
How has your work experience informed your desire to study Medicine?

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Learn the best interview strategies and practice with past interview questions & model answers.

Empathy and insight
Tell me about the importance of empathy to a healthcare professional.
What is the difference between empathy and sympathy?
How is empathy useful when communicating with a patient?

Responsibilities and challenges of being a doctor
What do you think are some of the main responsibilities that a doctor has?
How are you prepared for a career in which you are responsible for the wellbeing of other people?

Awareness of ethical issues in health and society
What are some ethical issues that you have seen in the news recently?
Should vaccinations be compulsory for the general population? Should they be compulsory for healthcare workers?
Do you believe that the UK Government has dealt with COVID-19 well? Are there any ethical issues that stem from the way in which they have acted?

Resilience in the face of difficult situations
How can you illustrate to me that you have the resilience required to deal with a medical degree?
Have you given any thought to the resilience that will be required of you to succeed as a doctor?
Tell me about a life experience in which you showed resilience.
Tell me how you will balance your work and your life outside of work as a busy medical student and doctor.
Are you prepared for night shifts and weekend work? Have you experienced work like this before?

University of Sunderland Medicine Interview Questions

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