250+ Medicine Interview Questions (And How To Answer Them!)

Updated on: December 3, 2023
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Written By Dr Ollie

Every article is fact-checked by a medical professional. However, inaccuracies may still persist.

What would you say if I told you you could know and prepare for almost all the medicine interview questions you’ll be asked?

Well guess what, every medicine interview question broadly falls into a category that comes up time and time again.

By the end of this guide, you’re going to know what those categories are, how to recognise them and how to deal with complete curveballs!

Types Of Medicine Interview Questions

As I said, almost all the medicine interview questions you’re going to be asked will fall into one of these ten categories:

  1. Motivation For Medicine
  2. Depth & Breadth Of Interest
  3. Personal Insight & Qualities
  4. Work Experience
  5. Medical Ethics
  6. Professional Judgement
  7. NHS Hot Topics
  8. Duties Of A Junior Doctor
  9. Structure Of The NHS
  10. Specific Medical School Knowledge

As you’ve probably seen, you can find lists of literally hundreds of random medicine interview questions online.

Whilst that can be useful, I think it’s more helpful to be clear as to what question category each practice question is coming from.

That way you can easily identify your strengths and weaknesses to help better prepare.

Below I’ve listed 25 practice questions for each of the ten categories below… Giving you 250 medicine interview questions to practice with.

I’ve also built a random question generator that you can use to put yourself to the test!

Motivation For Medicine Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • Do you actually want to study medicine or is it just what someone else wants for you

Practice Questions

  1. Why do you want to be a doctor?
  2. What would you do if you didn’t get into medicine this year?
  3. Are you prepared for the challenges of medical school? 
  4. What’s going to motivate you when the course gets tough?
  5. What’s led to you sitting here as a medicine applicant?
  6. What’s driving you to graduate from medical school?
  7. Why have you applied to medicine and what’s got you here?
  8. Could you see yourself doing another job other than being a doctor?
  9. Would you become a nurse if you didn’t get into medicine?
  10. Do your parents want you to be a doctor?
  11. How did you first decide on medicine?
  12. What first sparked your interest in medicine?
  13. What experiences have you had that have motivated you to pursue a career in medicine?
  14. How do you envision yourself making a positive impact in the healthcare industry?
  15. What are your long-term career goals in medicine?
  16. How do you plan to stay motivated throughout your medical training and career?
  17. What aspects of medicine do you find most rewarding and why?
  18. How do you hope to make a difference in the lives of your patients?
  19. What motivates you to work hard and succeed?
  20. What role do you see yourself playing in the healthcare system?
  21. What personal experiences have you had that have influenced your decision to pursue a career in medicine?
  22. What do you think sets you apart from other candidates in terms of your motivation?
  23. How do you plan to use your skills and training as a doctor to make a positive impact on the world?
  24. Have you ever considered pursuing a different career?
  25. What are the three main factors that are pulling you towards becoming a doctor?

Depth & Breadth Of Interest Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

  • Do you have any interests outside of medicine 
  • Do you have any extra-curricular achievements
  • What are your opinions regarding the wider world and its events

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • Are you a well rounded applicant with an interest in the world around you? Or are you a one-dimensional want-to-be doctor?

Practice Questions

  1. What are your interests outside of medicine?
  2. What scientific advancement do you think has had a significant impact on patient care in the last 50 years?
  3. What’s an interesting book you’ve read recently?
  4. What have you seen in the news related to healthcare lately?
  5. What’s your proudest achievement to date?
  6. Do you think it’s important for doctors to have hobbies outside of medicine?
  7. How do you think politics can influence healthcare?
  8. How do you unwind after a busy or stressful day?
  9. Do you play any sports?
  10. How do you plan to balance the demands of a medical career with your personal life?
  11. How do you spend your free time?
  12. What are your passions and interests outside of school?
  13. How do you like to relax after a long week?
  14. What are you currently reading or interested in learning about?
  15. How do you keep yourself motivated and engaged outside of school?
  16. Do you have any side projects or creative pursuits that you are currently working on?
  17. What are your long-term personal goals?
  18. How do you stay active and healthy?
  19. Where in the world would you most like to visit and why?
  20. Do you enjoy participating in team sports or other group activities?
  21. Do you have any creative outlets, such as writing, drawing, or photography?
  22. Do you have any hobbies or interests that you have pursued for a long time?
  23. Do you have any hobbies or interests that you have recently taken up or would like to try in the future?
  24. Do you have any musical talents or enjoy playing an instrument?
  25. What are your favourite types of hobbies or activities that allow you to be creative or expressive?

Personal Insight & Qualities Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

  • What your personal strengths and weaknesses are
  • Examples of situations that you’ve displayed a particular quality
  • How you react to certain situations

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • Do you have an honest, insightful understanding of your own personality. Can you reflect on how this influences your reactions

Practice Questions

  1. Why do you think you’ll be a good doctor?
  2. Tell us about a mistake you made recently?
  3. What aspects of life as a doctor do you think you’ll struggle with?
  4. Are you able to reflect on past experiences and improve?
  5. What’s your biggest weakness?
  6. Do you think you’d make a good prime minister?
  7. How would one of your best friends describe you?
  8. What do you think sets you apart from other candidates pursuing a career in medicine?
  9. What do you think will be the biggest challenges in your medical career and how do you plan to overcome them?
  10. What personal qualities and characteristics do you possess that you feel will make you a successful doctor?
  11. What are some personal challenges you’ve faced and how did you overcome them?
  12. How will you know if you’re a good doctor?
  13. What are your personal values and how do they align with the values of the NHS?
  14. How do you handle conflict or difficult situations?
  15. What are some things that you believe set you apart from other candidates?
  16. How do you think you can contribute to the culture of the NHS?
  17. What are some things that you are passionate about and how do they impact your work?
  18. How do you handle feedback and criticism?
  19. What are some personal goals that you have set for yourself and how do you plan to achieve them?
  20. What motivates you to do your best work?
  21. How do you handle stress or pressure at school?
  22. Can you give an example of something you’ve learnt from a recent failure?
  23. How do you prioritize your work and responsibilities?
  24. What are some things that you are proud of achieving in your personal or professional life?
  25. How do you think you have grown and evolved as a person over the last 5 years?

Work Experience Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • Has this candidate actually gone out and put the hours in to understand medicine and a caregiver’s role? Or have they just watched ‘Scrubs’ on TV?

Practice Questions

  1. What have you done to prepare yourself for a career in medicine?
  2. Did your work experience make you reconsider your desire to be a doctor?
  3. What was your main take-away from your work experience?
  4. What did you learn about yourself from your work experience?
  5. What surprised you that you saw on your work experience?
  6. Will your work experience influence your practice as a doctor in the future?
  7. What did you learn from the patients you saw and their experiences?
  8. What did you enjoy most about your work experience?
  9. How did your work experience help you understand the role of technology in healthcare?
  10. What did you like least about your work experience?
  11. What did you learn from your work experience that you can apply at medical school?
  12. How did you interact with patients during your work experience?
  13. Are there any patients that stick out in your mind from your work experience?
  14. What was the most rewarding part of your work experience?
  15. How did your work experience help you gain a better understanding of the healthcare industry?
  16. How did your shadowing experience help you develop your communication skills?
  17. What did you learn about patient care during your work experience?
  18. What was the most difficult part of your work experience and how did you handle it?
  19. How did your shadowing experience help you understand the role of a healthcare professional?
  20. What was the most surprising thing you learned during your work experience?
  21. How did your shadowing experience help you understand the importance of patient confidentiality?
  22. How did your work experience help you understand the importance of bedside manner?
  23. What was the most challenging case you observed during your work experience?
  24. How did your work experience help you understand the role of patient support in healthcare?
  25. What did you learn about patient care coordination during your work experience?

Medical Ethics Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • Do you have a basic grounding in the framework of medical ethics? Can you apply this framework to examples and analyse the conflicts

Practice Questions

  1. Should a doctor be able to refuse treatment to a patient if it goes against their beliefs?
  2. Is having an opt-out system for organ donation fair? 
  3. Are there times when not treating a patient is better than treating them?
  4. What can doctors do if a patient refuses to consent for a procedure?
  5. Is consent always necessary before a doctor does something?
  6. Why is confidentiality so important in medical practice?
  7. Are there any instances when a doctor can break a patient’s confidentiality?
  8. What does having ‘capacity’ mean?
  9. Why is it important to assess whether a patient has capacity?
  10. What can doctors do if a patient doesn’t have capacity?
  11. Should doctors be role models for patients?
  12. How do you define medical ethics?
  13. What are some ethical principles that guide doctors’ work as a healthcare professional?
  14. How would you handle ethical dilemmas in the workplace?
  15. How would you handle conflicts between the wishes of a patient and the recommendations of the healthcare team?
  16. How do doctors handle situations where a patient’s autonomy conflicts with their well-being?
  17. What would you do if there were a difference between a patient’s values and your own?
  18. How would you handle a situation where you disagree with a colleague’s approach to patient care?
  19. What might a doctor do if a patient’s family is making decisions that they believe are not in the patient’s best interest?
  20. How do healthcare teams handle situations where a patient is not capable of making their own decisions?
  21. How do doctors handle requests for treatments that they believe are not in the best interests of the patient?
  22. How would you handle a situation where you believe a patient is being mistreated by a colleague?
  23. What issues could arise if a patient’s cultural or religious beliefs conflict with recommended medical treatment?
  24. What are the rules governing euthanasia in the UK?
  25. What are the ethical dilemmas inherent in health professionals going on strike?

Professional Judgement Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

  • How you’d act in certain difficult situations
  • How you’d resolve conflict between two parties
  • What your thought process is in determining priorities

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • Can you make balanced, mature decisions regarding complex scenarios 

Practice Questions

  1. What are the risks of accepting gifts from patients?
  2. How could you deal with a colleague who’s not pulling their weight?
  3. What would you do if a patient started messaging you on social media asking you out on a date?
  4. Why do doctors have to use their power wisely?
  5. What are the dangers of a doctor’s extremely privileged position to influence people?
  6. Can a doctor ever date a patient?
  7. What would you do if the senior doctor turned up on the ward smelling of alcohol?
  8. Do you know of any examples where a doctor’s professional judgement has failed?
  9. Why must doctors use social media carefully?
  10. Can a doctor ever talk about patients with their friends?
  11. How do you define professional judgement?
  12. How can you develop your professional judgement skills?
  13. How do you handle situations where you are unsure of the best course of action?
  14. Have you ever had to make a judgement call with incomplete information?
  15. How do you handle situations where you have to make a decision under time pressure?
  16. Do doctors ever have to make a judgement call that goes against their personal beliefs?
  17. Have you ever had to make a decision that balances the interests of multiple stakeholders?
  18. What are some strategies you can use to resolve conflicts between colleagues?
  19. How could you handle a situation where a patient is not compliant with their medication regimen?
  20. Why might a patient choose not to follow their treatment plan?
  21. What would you do if you saw a colleague stealing medication from the ward?
  22. Can you ever let a patient influence your professional decisions?
  23. How can a doctor’s personal life impact their professional life?
  24. Why must doctors maintain a professional appearance in front of patients?
  25. Can doctors ever lie to patients?

NHS Hot Topics Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • Are you alert to the most recent challenges the NHS faces? Can you analyse them and their implications

Practice Questions

  1. What are some of the biggest challenges the NHS is currently facing?
  2. Could you talk about a high-profile medical case you’ve learnt about?
  3. What aspect of the NHS would you improve with a budget of ten million pounds?
  4. How could the NHS have better dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic?
  5. What are some of the lessons we’ve learnt from COVID-19?
  6. How do you think the NHS can address the challenges of increasing demand for healthcare services?
  7. Why is it currently so difficult to get a GP appointment?
  8. What are the dangers of patients not being able to see a doctor in a timely fashion?
  9. What impact do long A&E waiting times have on patients?
  10. What could the government do to improve A&E waiting times?
  11. How do you think the NHS can address the challenges of an aging population?
  12. What can the NHS do to attract and retain more staff?
  13. How might the integration of technology and innovation in healthcare improve patient outcomes?
  14. What are the hurdles in the way of addressing health inequalities and promoting equity in the UK?
  15. What impact could reducing bureaucracy and paperwork have on the NHS?
  16. Why is improving coordination and collaboration between different healthcare organisations and professionals so important for patient care?
  17. What strategies could the government use to reduce healthcare costs?
  18. Should addressing and preventing healthcare-associated infections be a priority for the NHS?
  19. How can hospitals improve patient safety and reduce medical errors?
  20. How do you think the NHS can address the challenges of improving mental health services and addressing the stigma surrounding mental illness?
  21. What impact might the rising cost of living have on healthcare provision in the UK?
  22. What’s the importance of providing equal access to healthcare for all patients?
  23. Is patient satisfaction an important measure for the NHS to track?
  24. What could the government do to help reduce NHS waiting times?
  25. What will the NHS have to do to adapt to the UK’s population needs over the next 10 years?

Duties Of A Junior Doctor Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • Do you actually know the ins and outs of the job you’re signing up to?

Practice Questions

  1. What might a typical day look like for a junior doctor on the wards?
  2. What are the roles of some of the professionals you might work with in a hospital?
  3. How does the job of a doctor and a nurse differ?
  4. Are you going to actually enjoy the work of a junior doctor?
  5. How do you plan to stay current with the latest advances in medicine?
  6. What do you see as the primary duties of a doctor?
  7. How can doctors balance their duties to their patients with their other professional and personal responsibilities?
  8. How would you ensure that you’re providing high-quality care to your patients?
  9. When might a junior doctor have to coordinate care with other healthcare providers?
  10. Do doctors ever have to advocate for a patient’s needs or rights?
  11. What are some of the main tasks that junior doctors are responsible for in their day-to-day work?
  12. How do doctors diagnose and treat medical conditions?
  13. How do doctors work with other healthcare professionals to provide patient care?
  14. Why is it important that doctors communicate with patients and their families about their health and treatment plans?
  15. How do doctors stay up-to-date on the latest medical research and best practices?
  16. What are some methods doctors use to manage their time and prioritise their responsibilities?
  17. Can you describe the role of the multidisciplinary team in healthcare?
  18. How do doctors coordinate care with other members of the multidisciplinary team?
  19. How do doctors collaborate with other members of the multidisciplinary team to develop treatment plans for patients?
  20. How could you handle situations where the roles and responsibilities of different members of the multidisciplinary team overlap or conflict?
  21. How might you ensure that the multidisciplinary team is collaborating effectively?
  22. How would you ensure that you are meeting the expectations of your patients, colleagues, and employer?
  23. How do junior doctors handle situations where they’re expected to work under time pressure or with limited resources?
  24. What could a junior doctor do if they don’t believe a consultant’s care plan is in the best interests of a patient?
  25. Why is it so important that junior doctors are able to work with a diverse range of patients and colleagues?

Structure Of The NHS Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

  • How the structure of the NHS works to deliver healthcare to patients
  • This might be regarding both a hospital or community setting
  • At a micro scale, how the multidisciplinary team works together 

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • If you’ve got a sense of how healthcare is delivered on a national and local scale and how you’d fit into it 

Practice Questions

  1. What’s the difference between primary and secondary healthcare?
  2. Who does a consultant surgeon answer to?
  3. Are GP practices private businesses?
  4. What are the main components of the NHS?
  5. How do primary and secondary care services work together to provide healthcare for patients?
  6. How is the NHS funded?
  7. Who’s in charge of the NHS?
  8. How is the NHS governed and regulated?
  9. How does the NHS ensure that it is providing high-quality care to patients?
  10. How does the NHS engage with the public and other stakeholders in its decision-making processes?
  11. How does the NHS involve patients and their families in the healthcare process?
  12. How does the NHS ensure that it is meeting the needs of the communities it serves?
  13. How do hospitals coordinate care with other healthcare providers?
  14. How does the NHS ensure that it is using resources efficiently and effectively?
  15. What are some of the main departments in a hospital and how do they work together?
  16. How do hospitals handle situations where there are staff shortages?
  17. How is a hospital organised and managed?
  18. How is a hospital funded?
  19. Can you describe the structure and operation of a GP practice?
  20. What are the main responsibilities of a GP and their team?
  21. How do GP practices coordinate care with hospitals and other healthcare providers?
  22. How do GP practices ensure that they are following best practices and guidelines?
  23. How is a GP practice funded?
  24. How is a GP practice governed and regulated?
  25. What kinds of healthcare professionals could you find working in a GP practice?

Specific Medical School Knowledge Interview Questions

Questions of this type will ask you things along the lines of:

  • What features of this medical school made you apply
  • Whether the way the curriculum is delivered will allow you to learn effectively 
  • Why you’d value this offer over other medical schools’ offers

What the interviewer is trying to understand:

  • Why have you chosen to apply to us specifically? Will you be a valuable addition to the student body

Practice Questions

  1. Why have you chosen to apply to this medical school?
  2. Do you think our teaching style will suit your learning needs?
  3. Do you think you’ll fit in well here?
  4. Why do you need to study here and not somewhere else?
  5. What are the main features of this university that made you apply?
  6. What do you hope to gain from your studies at this university?
  7. How does this medical school’s curriculum align with your academic and career goals?
  8. Does this university’s reputation and resources make it a good fit for you?
  9. How do you see yourself contributing to the community here?
  10. How have you researched this university and its programs?
  11. How do you envision your time at this university helping you to achieve your long-term goals?
  12. What are you most excited about in terms of your studies and experiences at this university?
  13. What makes this university stand out to you compared to other institutions you’ve applied to?
  14. Have you connected with faculty, staff, or current students at this university to learn more about the academic and student experience?
  15. How do you plan to take advantage of the resources and opportunities offered here?
  16. How have you considered the location and community of this university in your decision to apply?
  17. What do you hope to contribute to the academic and social community at this university?
  18. Have you considered the academic and extracurricular offerings of this university in your decision to apply?
  19. How do you plan to get involved and make the most of your time at this university?
  20. How does attending this university support your future career goals?
  21. What does the diversity of the student body and faculty at this university mean to you?
  22. Do you plan to make use of any research or internship opportunities available here?
  23. How do you see this university’s program complementing your previous education and experiences?
  24. Have you considered the faculty and their research interests at this university in your decision to apply?
  25. Have you considered the housing and campus life options at this university in your decision to apply?

Recognising Each Type Of Medicine Interview Question

Recognising the category of question you’re being asked truly is an important aspect of your interview technique.

Without putting any thought to it, you’ll be answering blind, not knowing what the interviewer was trying to get from you.

You may think it’ll be obvious and you’ll easily be able to infer what the interviewer means on the day.

However, without taking a conscious second to consider the category, the pressure of the day may see you launching into a detailed explanation holding the complete wrong end of the stick.

Always have an ear open for the triggers that will highlight to you which category the interview question you’re being asked falls into.

That way you’ll have a rough understanding of what your interviewer is trying to elicit from you so you can tailor your answer accordingly.

A medical school interview in progress

Now this isn’t to say there’s no possibility of an interviewer asking you what you had for tea last Thursday (hint: it rhymes with baghetti seatballs).

But, you can be fairly sure that 95% of medicine interview questions you’re going to be asked will fall neatly into one of these categories.

Once you know which category of question you’re being asked you can kick into that mode of question answer, hitting all the key points for full marks.

Dealing With Complete Curveballs

As I alluded to earlier, not every question will neatly fit into the ten categories above.

However, what every question does have in common is a purpose.

What is the interviewer trying to understand?

Take the classic question example of “if you could invite any three people to a dinner party who would they be and why?”

There could be many different purposes to this question:

  • How creative is this candidate in their thinking?
  • Do they have an inquisitive nature and a deep interest in others around them?
  • Who are their role models and why do they value them?

And so on… What these curve-ball type questions do is actually give you a wider scope to answer the question to suit you.

It would be impossible to prepare for every curve-ball question due to the very nature of them!

What you can do when asked one however is take a second to think how you can use this question to showcase yourself in the best light possible.

One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self-confidence is preparation.

–Arthur Ashe

If you want to practice with some more left-field questions then you should check out this list of weird medicine interview questions!

Final Thoughts

The reality is the majority of your medicine interview questions are not going to be groundbreaking.

The majority are all going to be within the ten categories of medicine interview question.

And that means you can very easily prep for them.

You can literally have a rough outline of an answer ready to go.

You probably won’t be asked in the exact same words but with enough practice you’ll soon see the very common themes that run through all interview questions.

With the right prep and mindset, I’m confident you’re going to interview fantastically.

About the author
After studying medicine at the University of Leicester, Dr Ollie now works as a junior doctor in London. His interests include medical education and expedition medicine, as well as having a strong belief in the importance of widening access to medicine.