Alex | Founder of Medfully
05 Feb 8 min read

Ultimate Guide to Southampton Medicine Interview | Questions & Tips (2022)

Southampton Medical School: Overview

Southampton medical school offers three different medical programmes, adjusted to the needs of students: A BM4, a four-year programme for graduate students, BM5, a standard five-year programme and BM6, a six-year course with a foundation year.


All of the courses at Southampton medical school offer an integrated approach to learning and early patient contact, which is great news for all of those who want to exercise their clinical skills as soon as possible. Moreover, all medical students at Southampton have to undertake a research project during year 3 and finish the year with a BMedSci degree!


Not only is Southampton Medical School a fantastic academic environment, but it is also located in an excellent location. Sunny weather all year round, access to water and beaches and port architecture are just some of Southampton’s attractions.



Pre-interview Selection:
🔢 How does Southampton Medical School select for interviews?

GCSEs: GCSEs are not used by Southampton to rank candidates for an interview. Grades are only used to check if they meet minimum requirements.

A-levels: A-level predicted grades aren’t used beyond checking if they meet minimum requirements.

Personal Statement: The Personal Statement isn’t used to select students for interviews, but may be used on the interview (selection day) and post-interview.

UCAT: Southampton Medical School places fairly high emphasis on the UCAT score. However, the SJT section is not considered when shortlisting candidates for an interview.


📊 What is the lowest required UCAT score to get a medicine interview at Southampton?

Home Students: Last year the lowest UCAT score to receive an interview invitation at Southampton was 2680 (for BM5 home school leavers).

International Students: For international students, the lowest UCAT score to get an interview at Southampton medical school was 2780 (for BM5 home school leavers).


📈 Want to save yourself some time, stress and money in the process of preparing for interviews at the University of Southampton? Prepare with Medfully, the best interview preparation tool for self-paced interview preparation.


📤 When does Southampton Medical School send out interview invitations?

Southampton sends out interview invitations exactly two weeks before the interview is meant to happen. This means Southampton sends out interview invitations from January until mid-February.


🚀 TOP Tip: Southampton, like many other medical schools, leave very little time before sending you the interview invitation and the interview date. Two weeks is very little time to prepare to do yourself justice on a medical school interview, which is why you should start preparing before receiving any interview offers from medical schools!


👨‍👩‍👦‍👦 How many candidates get interviewed for Medicine at Southampton?

Home Students: In 2019, 1491 applications from the UK resulted in 897 interviews at Southampton. This is approx. 60% of all UK students who applied.

International Students: Unfortunately recent statistics for international students aren’t available.


Interviews at Southampton Medical School:
🗓️ Southampton Medicine Interview dates:

Medicine interviews at Southampton run from January until the end of February. Last year they took place between 26.01 and 25.02. The exact dates are always specified on Southampton's website. Make sure to check it prior to the interview period for the latest updates.


💬 What’s the interview format at Southampton?

Medicine interviews at Southampton include two parts - a panel interview and a group task. In the past two years, both stages took place online.

Both the panel interview and the group task last 20-30 minutes each, so the Southampton interview lasts around an hour in total.


👥 Group Task at Southampton:

During the group task at Southampton, you are assigned to a group with several other students. Each group is given a topic to discuss. Topics can vary, but they usually revolve around medical ethics and require no prior knowledge.

Before the group task, you are given all the instructions and 5 minutes of reading time to read the scenario and calmly think about your answer. As you discuss the case with your peers you will be watched by two interviewers and assessed on your interpersonal skills, like teamwork, leadership, communication or respect.


🏆 How likely is it I’ll be given an offer after an interview at Southampton Medical School?

Home Students: Out of 696 UK students interviewed, 363 were offered a place at Southampton after the interview, which is roughly 52% of those interviewed.

International Students: Unfortunately unavailable. The latest information published is from the 2016 entry when out of 67 international candidates interviewed 20 were offered a place. However, take this data with a pinch of salt, as may not be representative of today’s proportions.


💅 What to do before the interview at Southampton Medical School?

  • increase your confidence and interview knowledge by preparing using Medfully
  • find a place with strong wifi and check your connection
  • check if your camera and microphone work
  • find a quiet, private space with good lighting and a plain background and do at least one mock interview in the space to get used to the setting


👀 What are interviewers at Southampton looking for during an interview?

Interviewers at Southampton already know your academic abilities and now want to get to know you better as a person. Therefore, they look for a number of personal qualities and want to see you:

  • are self-motivated and resilient
  • have reflected on relevant life experiences (this may include work experience, paid employment and personal experiences both in and outside health and social care settings)
  • can communicate effectively
  • can interact successfully with others
  • understand the values of the NHS constitution


🤵‍♀️ What are the interviewers like at Southampton?

Most students who’ve sat interviews at Southampton agree that interviewers are generally friendly and kind. They nod a lot, which makes you believe that what you’ve said makes sense and gives you a boost in confidence.


🚀 TOP Tip: Not all interviewers that you’ll encounter will be kind. However, don’t be put off by this. Some interviewers are trained to be cold and poker-faced to stay more objective. It’s never your fault ;).


⏳ How long does it take to hear back from Southampton?

Replies are sent out only after all interviews have been completed. Therefore, you can expect to hear back from Southampton by the end of March.


🧠 Southampton Medicine Interview Questions:

Motivation:

  • Why would you like to study medicine?
  • Why would you like to study medicine at Southampton?
  • Medicine is a demanding field to work in. What do you think will keep you motivated to persevere in adversity?

Work experience and volunteering:

  • What has been the single greatest lesson you took from your work experience?
  • Why do medical schools require candidates to undertake work experience?
  • Was there any event, book or person that inspired you to go down the medicine route?

Communication:

  • Tell us about a recent situation when you had to overcome a challenge
  • Communication is a very broad term. What elements of communication are important in medicine?
  • Would you approach a patient with dementia any different to a paediatrics patient? How would your approach differ?

Group task (example scenarios):

  • Imagine you are the head of the surgical department in a hospital. There are two patients, A and B, both requiring an urgent liver transplant, but there is only one viable liver. Patient A is a 32-year old social activist, with a drug abuse history. Patient B is a 78-year old woman, who takes care of 3 children, whose parents died in a car accident. Discuss with the group how you would allocate the liver.
  • A 14-year old boy is rushed into A&E after a car crash. The patient is unconscious and has sustained huge blood loss as a result of the accident. Together with your team, you decide the boy requires an urgent blood transfusion. As you are about to take the boy into the OR, his parents arrive and forbid you to carry on with the blood transfusion on religious grounds. Discuss with the group how to proceed and what factors to consider

NHS & its values:

  • What values underlie the NHS?
  • What are the most important qualities of a doctor?
  • If you could choose to allocate an additional £20 million to either of the following areas of healthcare, which one would you choose and why? Cancer research, mental health, Covid-19 research, palliative care, prolonging life research.
  • What do you understand by the term “universal healthcare”? What are the advantages of universal healthcare systems like the NHS over privatised ones, such as the one in the US?


🚀 TOP Tip: Have a hard time answering any of the above questions? You’ll find insider tactics to tackle all of the above questions and formulate convincing and structured answers at Medfully - The Best Medicine Interview Preparation Resource.

Please note that these aren’t questions that have been asked at Southampton Medical School in past years. Publishing such information would be against Southampton’s policy. The above questions are adjusted for the interview style at Southampton and are meant to give you a broad sense of the questions you may face.


✅ Southampton Medical School Interviews: 3 Tips

Ensure you can talk fluently about your Personal Statement:

Interviewers at Southampton may have access to your personal statement and may ask you to elaborate on some of the points that you’ve mentioned there.

Since a bit of time may have passed since the time you wrote your personal statement, it may be a good idea to refresh your memory of it before your Southampton interview. The best way to do it is to print it out and highlight all the individual points you’ve made - work experience, volunteering, extracurriculars, books etc. Then try to extract questions from all of those points and answer them out loud, as you would do in an interview setting.


Brush up on your communication and team working skills

Medicine interviews at Southampton always involve group tasks, which is quite unique and tough to prepare for. After all, you can’t predict the exact topic of the group task or the way your group members will interact.

However, how good are your communication and team working skills lie fully within your control. Try to read online about good practices when working in a team and get a friend or two to discuss a medical ethics scenario with you to put your skills to a test. You can use the above ones to find more in our list of 250+ medicine interview questions.


Listen and ask questions during the group task

Never dismiss others’ opinions during the group task by default. Even if it seems that what your peers are saying is far-fetched and wrong. Instead, acknowledge what they are saying and ask them to elaborate. A helpful phrase that you may use is “I see where you are coming from, but...” or “That’s a great idea, I wouldn’t have thought about it. But don’t you think that...”


🤞 Good luck with preparing for the Southampton Medicine interview! Fingers crossed!

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