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U of T Interviews: How did they go?


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Hey did anyone else get the feeling that they did great as soon as they got out of the interview and as months pass by you become less sure of yourself?

 

I had this problem and to stop it from annoying me I wrote every single question down and rated how well I did (bad, OK, good). I determined this from how well-organized my response was, its content, how well it matched the rest of my application and what the interviewers gestures, comments were (this last part was hard because the interviewers were very neutral and nice the whole time).

 

When I did this, it makes me think my interview performance was not bad at all. I'm not sure what my interviewers thought, but at least I thought I did well and now I can study peacefully for these last exams!

 

You should all try this cause it might ease the waiting period.

 

Haha, I had the same feeling. But, really you shouldn't worry about it. I think coming out of an interview premeds have a tendency to focus on what they did badly and not what they did well.

 

The thing with UofT was that the interviewers (I found) were very laid back. It is difficult to gauge how you are doing if they just nod their heads at everything you say. They never really challenged anything I said. Anyone else find this to be a problem? I understand that their idea was not to make us nervous so that we could behave as naturally as possible.

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Yep, I had the same thing happening to me: they did not present any arguments about the things that I said. It was very different from my Ottawa interview, which was a lot more structured and they challenged my views on ethics/health care etc...

 

Did anyone else get the feeling with UofT that a decision was kind of already made prior the interview (whether negative or positive)?

 

Well, when the interviewers read your file they will form a preconcieved idea of who you are and what you will be like. So if they have an initially favourable opinion of you, the interview will go a lot more smoothly.

 

So yea, in some ways yes, they have already made up their minds. Its just basic psychology.

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Did anyone else get the feeling with UofT that a decision was kind of already made prior the interview (whether negative or positive)?

 

From what I understand, the interview is worth 20% (academic 60%, ECs/refs 20%)... so, the interview is really a flag more than anything else (assuming most people will do fairly well on it).

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From what I understand, the interview is worth 20% (academic 60%, ECs/refs 20%)... so, the interview is really a flag more than anything else (assuming most people will do fairly well on it).

 

Estairella did you find that somewhere on the UofT website? If so, where? Or did you hear it from sources? Thanks!

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Estairella did you find that somewhere on the UofT website? If so, where? Or did you hear it from sources? Thanks!

 

UofT med admissions (among other schools) made a presentation at my school and the breakdown was a part of their Powerpoint presentation, this was in like 2005 or 2006 so certainly things could have changed since then.

 

*Could try to find it for you but it's on laptop so would require work* :P

 

EDIT: To add to what Alpine said, it's 60% academic, 40% ECs/refs pre-interview, and then that becomes 20% ECs/refs and 20% interview post-interview.

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From what I understand, the interview is worth 20% (academic 60%, ECs/refs 20%)... so, the interview is really a flag more than anything else (assuming most people will do fairly well on it).

 

This is what I like about UofT. Their admission process is way more structured (unlike weird Mac process). I think I did very well in the interview. UofT is my top choice!

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i don't think it's as structured as they make you think...i have heard that a good interview or a good perception about you in the interview could weigh very heavily regardless of your marks

 

regardless of what they say about the percentages, if they mark very strictly on the interview it is likely to have more weight by virtue of the fact that most people will be very close in their GPA

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I call shenanigans. I've known two students sitting on interview panels and they both told me that they basically made the final decision for entrance. Anyone who has gotten an interview has already passed the rigorous academic criteria. At this point, they just want to make sure you're a good fit for the school.

 

Mind you, maybe there is a breakdown in percentages on paper. But it's likely that the breakdown of percentage difference in the academic portions are very narrow. That is to say, the difference between a GPA of 3.85 and a 3.95 is 1% of your overall package, while a good interview versus a bad interview can be the difference of 10+%.

 

At the end of the day, from what I've been told, the interview is damn important towards admission.

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Mind you, maybe there is a breakdown in percentages on paper. But it's likely that the breakdown of percentage difference in the academic portions are very narrow. That is to say, the difference between a GPA of 3.85 and a 3.95 is 1% of your overall package, while a good interview versus a bad interview can be the difference of 10+%.

 

At the end of the day, from what I've been told, the interview is damn important towards admission.

 

I don't think we're saying different things about the interview. Of course you can do poorly on the interview, and this will completely destroy your chances (hence the flag comment), however I don't necessarily think a good interview will significantly increase your chances - everyone I've talked to has said their UT interview went well.

 

And the academic comment makes no sense, unless you're suggesting they change how academics is weighed post-interview. If the difference between a 3.85 and 3.95 is minimal, the average undergrad entering GPA clearly wouldn't be 3.9+.

 

What you are arguing that might be correct is that pre-interview, everyone above the cutoff for interview falls within a small range of scores. But I'm arguing that (if you don't screw up the interview), your interview score will also fall within a small range... and a small range of 80% is still more important than a small range of 20%.

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Whether someone thinks their interview went well is irrelevant. You are not only graded on the things that you say, but on how well the interviewers could see themselves working with you. They are judging your character too. There is no way to tell how you did.

 

Your interview at this point, I would think, makes up the biggest portion of the admissions decisions. There are plenty of people with 4.0s and good ECs that got accepted to other Canadian med schools and got rejected from U of T pre-interview, so the GPA obviously didn't make that much of a difference.

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From my understanding, they just assign you a grade and the people with the highest combined grade get in. Your academic and non-academic marks have already been compiled pre-interview and then your interview mark is just added on top of that. So yeah, of course the interview is important but certainly not to the same extent as in many other schools. And it's really hard to gauge how well you did in the interview because ultimately, you can't read your interviewers' mind and they're nice and friendly to everyone from what I've been hearing.

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The interview should be weighted high at this stage. As was mentioned all those with interviews have reached the minimum criteria for GPA and MCAT. Whether you have a 3.95 or a 3.80 or a 3.5.....you will learn medicine during your med school years.

 

At this point it is important for the adcom to get a better idea of the type of physician that you will be. Will you be the type that cannot talk to patients and therefore is ineffective? Or are you the type who can relate to patients and be effective?

 

This SHOULD be the deciding factor as everyone has demonstarted that they can do academics above the level of the cutoff..

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Maybe that's true but the topic isn't how SHOULD they decide but rather how DO they decide. And what I've heard is consistent with what estairella and alpine are saying.

 

I, for one, am glad that UT weighs academics rather heavily and I certainly hope that there's more than a 1% difference between a 3.95 and a 3.85 just because of how much more difficult it is to attain the first mark.

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To really know if how they consider the 'interview' in their final decision, you'ld have to look at statistics of those interviewed and not accepted vs. interviewed and accepted. p101's posted stats don't generally have the former a lot, since ppl don't generally post that they got rejected. MDapps on the other hand offers this, however this can't be exactly accurate since ppl can make up whatever they want, so take it with a grain of salt. So here's a link to UofT's mdapps:

 

http://mdapplicants.com/schoolsummary.php?schoolid=128&a=1

 

this shows a difference from those interviewed and accepted vs rejected (3.84 vs. 3.73)

 

so this proves that the 'interview' isn't the end-all-be-all in deciding whether you're accepted. Also notice that those with high gpa's and rejected usually have an 8 in 1 MCAT section (which will be flagged). This however also shows how the interview is worth something (and is probably accurate at 20%) since some ppl with high gpa's that interviewed at a lot of schools, were subsequently rejected at a lot of schools, including toronto. This suggests the student isn't a good interviewer, which stopped them from being accepted at toronto. You'll also see some ppl that are accepted that have fairly lower gpas.

 

So basically, from this, you could conclude that the interview is worth something, but isn't worth everything

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Several of my supervisors and colleagues have done file reviews and interviews at UofT. From their comments it would seem like there is well defined structure (i.e. 60% academic and 40% EC's, LORs & interview) for how the various components of the application are weighted. However, I believe they are also given a fair amount of autonomy on making the final decision. For example if your file was reviewed and you didn't end up having a high enough score to get an interview, but the reviewer for some reason really thought that you should be interviewed, they can make that decision and grant you an interview. Similarly, say you had an amazing file review score but didn't do so great on the interview, the odds are that since file review is worth so much that you would still have a good shot of getting accepted. However, if your interviewer recommended that should not be accepted, then I think you end up in the rejection pile even though your overall score was good enough. Hope this make sense. They recognize that their formula is not always going to select the best candidates and therefore allow for exceptions. It makes it somewhat subjective in the end, but I think it allows them to select the best candidates for their program.

I interviewed at UofT this year and it is very hard to know how it went, the interviews were very friendly and it sounds like that was the case for most people. Even having more insight into the process isn’t going to help at this point, so just wait for May 15 and try to think about it.

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And the academic comment makes no sense, unless you're suggesting they change how academics is weighed post-interview. If the difference between a 3.85 and 3.95 is minimal, the average undergrad entering GPA clearly wouldn't be 3.9+.

 

What you are arguing that might be correct is that pre-interview, everyone above the cutoff for interview falls within a small range of scores. But I'm arguing that (if you don't screw up the interview), your interview score will also fall within a small range... and a small range of 80% is still more important than a small range of 20%.

 

 

No. You misunderstand what I'm saying.

 

To get to the interview stage, it's very possible that they screen out anyone who gets below a 95% on their overall pre-interview package. That's a combination of ECs, reference letters, and the GPA. So, anyone being granted an interview, out of the (for example) 80%, could be sitting on a 76+% off the bat. An interview is hugely subjective, though. It's not an objective measure. It's far easier to rank and assign people more widely distributed values. A 1/20 may be poor, a 10/20 may be average, a 15/20 good, a 20/20 amazing. If everyone goes in with about the same academic score (which seems likely, as why would they invite you otherwise?), then the interview is going to be what makes the biggest difference.

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No. You misunderstand what I'm saying.

 

To get to the interview stage, it's very possible that they screen out anyone who gets below a 95% on their overall pre-interview package. That's a combination of ECs, reference letters, and the GPA. So, anyone being granted an interview, out of the (for example) 80%, could be sitting on a 76+% off the bat. An interview is hugely subjective, though. It's not an objective measure. It's far easier to rank and assign people more widely distributed values. A 1/20 may be poor, a 10/20 may be average, a 15/20 good, a 20/20 amazing. If everyone goes in with about the same academic score (which seems likely, as why would they invite you otherwise?), then the interview is going to be what makes the biggest difference.

 

Well said, but I'm sure they can go back and change your pre-interview score after the interview

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No. You misunderstand what I'm saying.

 

To get to the interview stage, it's very possible that they screen out anyone who gets below a 95% on their overall pre-interview package. That's a combination of ECs, reference letters, and the GPA. So, anyone being granted an interview, out of the (for example) 80%, could be sitting on a 76+% off the bat. An interview is hugely subjective, though. It's not an objective measure. It's far easier to rank and assign people more widely distributed values. A 1/20 may be poor, a 10/20 may be average, a 15/20 good, a 20/20 amazing. If everyone goes in with about the same academic score (which seems likely, as why would they invite you otherwise?), then the interview is going to be what makes the biggest difference.

 

What basis do you have for thinking that the interview scores are going to be more varied than the pre-interview scores?

 

You can't apply without a GPA of 3.60. Between 3.60 and 4.00 (max) there is a range of 0.40. According to your logic, someone who scores a 3.60 on the GPA (the lowest possible), gets 1/60 whereas someone who scores 4.00 on the GPA (the best possible) gets 60/60.. with a 3.8 something like 30/60. That means there is a range of 30-60% for "competitive" (>3.8 GPA) students who go on to get interviews.

 

We know that's not true, because you can have a high GPA and still be rejected, but if everyone was at around the same score pre-interview, then you can't explain why people with higher GPAs get accepted post-interview compared to people with lower GPAs (as another poster as mentioned).

 

The point is, you don't know anything other than what they officially state, and what they state (from what I know) is 60/20/20. This makes sense - there are people with high GPAs who get rejected and low GPAs who get accepted but in general the higher your GPA the better your chance of acceptance.

 

/I'm an undergrad and my GPA, for the record, is a 3.8 so trust me, I'd love it if it was just about the interview, but that doesn't make it true... :P

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Just to add to that... some food for thought. If it was all (or mostly) interview post-application, then they could just say that, which some schools do.

 

I think it'd be misleading for them to state it was 20% interview if it held the most sway in your decision... what if the interview was stated to be worth 80% but everyone gets between 78-80/80 on the interview? That clearly doesn't make sense either; so unless UT is purposely trying to mess with you, then it's safe to assume they mean it when they say the interview is "worth" a fifth of your application.

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What basis do you have for thinking that the interview scores are going to be more varied than the pre-interview scores?

 

You can't apply without a GPA of 3.60. Between 3.60 and 4.00 (max) there is a range of 0.40. According to your logic, someone who scores a 3.60 on the GPA (the lowest possible), gets 1/60 whereas someone who scores 4.00 on the GPA (the best possible) gets 60/60.. with a 3.8 something like 30/60. That means there is a range of 30-60% for "competitive" (>3.8 GPA) students who go on to get interviews.

 

We know that's not true, because you can have a high GPA and still be rejected, but if everyone was at around the same score pre-interview, then you can't explain why people with higher GPAs get accepted post-interview compared to people with lower GPAs (as another poster as mentioned).

 

The point is, you don't know anything other than what they officially state, and what they state (from what I know) is 60/20/20. This makes sense - there are people with high GPAs who get rejected and low GPAs who get accepted but in general the higher your GPA the better your chance of acceptance.

 

/I'm an undergrad and my GPA, for the record, is a 3.8 so trust me, I'd love it if it was just about the interview, but that doesn't make it true... :P

 

 

The basis for thinking that the interviews are more varied is the fact that U of T drops one mark per year for most people applying, that pretty much evens things out.

 

If they mark the interviews much different than the Academics, it can be worth more even though it is 20% (ie some does poorly in the eyes of the interview can get 0-5/20, whereas someone who does well gets a 20/20.

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