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Part 3: General Advice for the Interview What should you always avoid during the interview? 1. Vague answers: When standing behind the door and waiting for the interviewer to call your name, you have approximately two minutes to prepare an answer. In that time, you should be thinking of points to make and ordering them in order of importance. 2. Filler words: Too many “likes” and “ums” convey nervousness and will likely translate to a “choppy” answer. To prevent this from happening to you, bear in mind that practice makes perfect. Practice answering prompts and record yourself while doing so. Then, catch yourself whenever you insert filler words into your responses. Is it when you are talking too quickly? Now that you know this, repeat your response and slow down this time. Find the source of the challenge and address it. That is what practice is for. For example, here is how you should not answer a question: Question: Why did you choose to apply to our school? Answer: Well, you know, (filler words convey a lack of confidence) it is close to home so it is where I want to go. The hospitals here are great and are what I am looking for. Feedback: The first words that the interviewee uttered are filler words that convey uncertainty and detract from the flow of his answer. Not only that, but his points were poorly organized. Being close to home is not the main reason for wanting to join a program. A better answer would provide an example of a strong point of the school that the applicant finds alluring. For example, let’s say that McMaster has a history of accepting a culturally diverse range of students in hopes of turning out doctors who can relate to all types of populations, socioeconomic statuses, and beliefs. You can mention how you read through the school’s website and have asked current medical students and they have all confirmed this fact. You can go above and beyond and mention a relevant experience with your own life. What could a relevant experience be? As long as it does not sound forced, any experience involving diversity could be incorporated well into your answer. For example, have you worked or volunteered with children from low socioeconomic statuses? Voice how important you believe acceptance and diversity are and how it matches with your beliefs. A real life example is engaging for the interviewer and truly demonstrates your desire to be a part of their culture. There are a handful of helpful YouTube videos that cover the main points for what an interviewer is looking for during the interview. To get you started, here is one that covers most of the key points: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OLxz4pCBXKo . I should also emphasize the fact that practice makes perfect. This is why you should answer as many prompts as possible with yourself and/or a partner. Some excellent source of prompts with ideal answers can be found here: Practice MMI Interview Questions as well as a handful of Canadian universities with sample question (see McMaster's manual found here). Conclusion Ultimately, the key to success in the MMI is practice and knowing yourself inside and out. Make a habit of reviewing a few prompts a week with a partner. Grade yourself on the days where you do not see your partner. Never forget that practice makes perfect. I wish you the best of luck in your journey. Let me know if you have any questions.