Alex | Founder of Medfully
11 May 7 min read

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

Plymouth Medical School: Overview

Innovative, flexible and pleasant is the medical school located in the city of Plymouth. Plymouth’s medical course is characterised by its heavy clinical focus with a lot of patient contact, which starts as early as the second week of year 1! Clinical placements will take place across Plymouth, Torbay and Taunton, all of which have scenic maritime landscapes and offer a perfect environment to both study and chill out.

Plymouth Medical School can also boast one of the highest student satisfaction ratings, with over 84% of students saying they were satisfied with the course in the 2020 NSS student survey.


Selection For Medicine Interviews at Plymouth:
🔢 How does Plymouth selects for interviews?

GCSEs + A-levels: For your application to be considered you need to meet minimum entry requirements for both GCSEs and predicted grades. Having grades higher than the threshold won’t increase your chances of getting an interview at Plymouth Medical School.

Personal Statement: Not considered when shortlisting students for medicine interviews.

UCAT: Each year, the admissions team at Plymouth sets a cut-off score, depending on the overall performance of the year’s cohort and the number of students who applied.

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📊 What is the lowest required UCAT score to get an interview at Plymouth?

🇬🇧 Home Students: In previous years Plymouth’s UCAT cut off averaged around 2400. However, for 2022 entry, due to a higher number of applications, the UCAT threshold was raised to 2610.

🌍 International Students: At Plymouth, International Students are subjected to the same requirements as home students. Hence, for 2022 entry medicine the UCAT cut off for international students was also 2610.

📈 Want to save yourself some time, stress and money preparing for the interview at Plymouth? Be a top achiever and prepare with Medfully; the best interview preparation tool for self-paced interview preparation.


📤 When does Plymouth send out interview invitations?

Historically, Plymouth usually sent out interview invitations between November and February of the application cycle.


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

🇬🇧 Home Students: For 2022 entry, Plymouth medical school has received 1445 applications from the UK and invited 686 students for an interview (47%).

🌍 International Students: For 2022 entry, Plymouth medical school has received 276 applications from outside the UK and invited 84 students for an interview (30%).


💡 How To Prepare for Medicine Interviews at Plymouth?

Preparing for medical school interviews requires more than just reading an article or doing a mock interview. It requires intentionality, structure and commitment. Luckily, with Medfully  it is simpler and more efficient than ever:

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Medicine Interviews at Plymouth (2022):
🗓️ Plymouth Medicine Interview dates (2023 entry)

This year’s interviews for medicine at Plymouth will most likely take place between December 2022 and February 2023. Once you get the interview invitation you should get the option to book a date that’s most convenient for you via Plymouth’s virtual booking system.


💬 What’s the interview format at Plymouth?

In the past two years (2021 and 2022 entry) Plymouth has been doing online Multiple Mini Interviews (MMIs) over Zoom. They involved 4 stations, each held by a separate interviewer, revolving around a different topic and comprised of several questions. Together with the introduction, debriefing and downtime between stations, the online MMI lasted approx. 50 minutes.

The interviewers at Plymouth can come from a variety of backgrounds: During your Plymouth MMI, you can face doctors, other healthcare staff, academic staff, medical students or even laypeople.

Plymouth Medical School hasn’t yet officially stated whether this year’s interviews (2023 entry) will take place online or in-person. We aim to update this section as soon as that information becomes available.


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

🇬🇧 Home Students: Following 686 interviews for 2022 entry, 299 students have received offers to study medicine at Plymouth (44%).

🌍 International Students: Following 84 interviews for 2022 entry, 23 international students have received offers to study medicine at Plymouth (27%).


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

  • boost your confidence and improve interview knowledge by preparing using Medfully
  • make sure to prepare a formal outfit in advance (and check it for any signs of wear/stains and if you feel comfortable in it!)
  • if this year’s interviews happen to be online, download Zoom and run a test call to see if it works flawlessly on your computer
  • find a quiet room with a good lighting and a strong internet connection and conduct at least one mock in that space to test it
  • don’t forget your reading glasses (if you use them), as you’ll be expected to read things off the screen


👀 What are the interviewers at Plymouth looking for?

Medical school interviews are an opportunity for the admissions team to get an insight into your personality and see if you have the necessary predispositions to become a great doctor. Therefore, during the Plymouth medicine interview, the interviewers will assess you on a number of qualities and skills:

  • integrity
  • veracity and honesty
  • flexibility
  • motivation and commitment
  • empathy and being non-judgmental
  • communication skills
  • potential for leadership
  • insight into the roles and responsibilities of a doctor, dentist, dental care professional or healthcare scientist
  • ability to be a team player
  • ability to deal with stress appropriately
  • problem-solving skills
  • students who know their limitations, their strengths and weaknesses
  • reflectiveness
  • students who demonstrate a suitable approach to life and people.


⏳ How long does it takes to hear back from Plymouth?

Typically, you’ll have to wait until all medicine interviews have been completed (end of February/early March), but it may happen that Plymouth will get back to you sooner.


🧠 Plymouth Medicine Interview Questions:

Motivation for medicine:

  • What steps have you taken to determine if medicine is the right path for you to take?
  • Why are you a good candidate for medicine?
  • Studying medicine is a long and demanding journey. What will keep you motivated to push through, despite the stresses, demanding workload and other obstacles?

Personality:

  • How would your friends describe you? Is there anything you would like to change about yourself?
  • Leadership is a vital skill in medicine. Tell us about a situation where you played the role of a leader.
  • A 14-year old son of your mom’s best friend asks you how to manage school workload and stress associated with his studies. What advice would you give them?
  • What are your 3 proudest non-academic achievements and why?


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Insight Into Medicine:

  • Tell us about a situation that made you aware of the challenges related to being a doctor.
  • Are good interpersonal skills more important than scientific knowledge for a doctor?
  • What's more important in medicine: sympathy or empathy? How can medical schools instil empathy in their students?

The NHS and Hot Topics:

  • What do you know about the way the NHS is funded? Currently, around 9.6% of the UK’s GDP goes to funding the NHS. Should the UK spend a larger percentage of the GDP on healthcare?
  • 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 know about the A&E crisis and how it could be resolved?
  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of the use of technology in healthcare?
  • How will you take care of your mental health as a medical student and later as a doctor?

Medical Ethics:

  • What are the ethical considerations regarding abortion?
  • 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. How would you allocate the liver and why?
  • A 19-year old patient comes to your GP practice and discloses they regularly engage in the use of illicit drugs. They ask you not to tell anyone, including the police. What factors should you consider in such a scenario, and who would you inform about the situation?

Role-plays:

  • You are playing basketball in front of your house with a friend. You wanted to pass the ball to them, but they made a dodge and it hit your neighbour's new car instead. As you approach the car you see that the ball caused one of the windows to shatter. You don't know your neighbour very well but heard rumours about him being grumpy and rude. Break the news to your neighbour.
  • You are a 3rd-year medical student. Together with a group of your classmates you've been working on a presentation on the impact of different calcium sources on hip fractures in older adults. As you prepare the setup you realise you forgot to save your part of the presentation. In turn, your group's presentation is incomplete. Approach your group leader and discuss the issue with them.

🚀 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 Plymouth in past years. Publishing such information would be against Plymouth’s policy. The above questions are adjusted for the interview style at Plymouth and are meant to give you a broad sense of the questions you may face.


✅ Plymouth Medical School Interviews: 3 Tips

Make your personality shine through!

Although “be yourself” is probably the most generic piece of advice we could give, it’s also one of the most important rules to follow. As we’ve stated repeatedly, the medicine interview’s main purpose is for the admissions team to get a glimpse into your personality, and see your qualities or soft skills in real life.

Therefore, you must allow them to get that insight! Don’t try to impress the interviewers. Don’t give memorised answers that you’ve read about somewhere online. Don’t try to fit your work experience whenever you can. Just be your humble, genuine self.


Study the GMC’s Good Medical Practise Guidelines & The NHS Constitution

Although there is no “required reading” listed by Plymouth, reading these two documents can immensely benefit your interview prep:

The NHS Constitution outlines what the patients and staff working in the NHS can expect from the NHS and what the NHS expects in return. Reading it will help you understand what values and rules all NHS workers have to abide by.

GMC’s Good Medical Practice sets out guidelines for doctors working in the NHS and will help you understand what it means to be a “good doctor”. These documents aren’t the easiest reads, but reading them carefully and analytically will certainly help you with answering questions about medical ethics and the NHS.


Familiarise yourself with the university

Interviewers at Plymouth can ask you about your motivations to join their university or your suitability for the course. Make sure you read up on Plymouth’s course structure, and facilities and think about why you are actually applying there.


Good luck with your Plymouth Medicine Interview! You'll smash it, for sure!

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