Residency & Fellowship Interviews

قدم لي البرنامج الذي أعمل فيه هذا الملف ليساعدني في التحضير للمقابلات. أحببت أن اشاركه معكم لتعم الفائدة

Practical approach Residency and Fellowship Interviews

You made it to the interview day, which is one of the most important milestones in the residency and fellowship application process!

This is the day you present your case to referees who are interested in recruiting the strongest candidate for their program. We will break down the interview day to three phases, pre-interview day, interview day and post interview

Pre-interview day

Some of the residency program will have pre-interview dinner the night before the interview day. Although this meant to be casual dinner but this may count toward your final score in the residency program. Make sure to interact with the program coordinators, chief residents and any representative from the residency program. Show them that you are interested and want to learn about their experiences

Before and after the dinner, go online and review the residency program web-page. Make sure you are fully informed about the program and prepart 4-5 questions to ask to the faculty who will interview you next day about the program. The goal of these questions is to get more information about the program, but of course to show the interviewer that you did your home work and you are ready to start next July as an intern or a fellow in the program

Interview day

This is your chance to present your case, some people consider it a show and it is. Why?, Because, you have to be prepared and present your case flawlessly, you have to be engaged with the audience and use body language to express your self. Here are some hints that will make your interview successful

Prepared answers

Prepare answers to common questions that are often used by residency and fellowship programs, below are some examples

o Tell me about yourself. The goal of this questions is to break the ice between you and the interviewer and give you the opportunity to talk about special aspects of yourself that are not in the medical field, talk about your family, from where did you come from, how did you get into the medical school, any interesting events in your life that drove your decision for medicine

o Strength and weakness points. Often, the interviewers use this question to document in their score cards why you deserve to be considered, this is important question and make sure you answer it correctly. The answer for strength points should start by saying that you have an excellent group of residents and candidates because you have an excellent program, but I would be also an excellent fit because I will be an excellent team player (give example why), I am hard worker (why), I will drive your in training exam score up (in case your scores in USMLE are excellent), etc. For the weakness points, you would like to mention something that you worked on and it is now a strength point. For example, you were obsessed in details of physical examination, which will slow you down, but with practice, you are more fluent in documenting theses findings with same accuracy

o What drives your passion for the specialty? You have to present the driving factor for applying to the program

o Tell me about your research experiences/publications. You have to be very ready and know all the details about every thing in your application, including your personal statement

o Do you have questions about our program? Prepare 1-2 questions, start by saying that the website or the presentation on the day of interview was clear and very informative, just you have one or two brief questions. Ask about research opportunities, do residents/fellow publish, how the faculty help learners to publish, would you have the opportunity to teach medical students, etc

Important advices

Here are some important advices you need to use during the interview

o Dress using the business dress code, tie, shirt, and suit

o Shake hands with all interviewers, look the interviewer in the eye.o Maintain eye contact

o Keep providing subtle smile, do not look goofy but the interviewer should see that you are pleasant person. They are looking for pleasant people to work with

o If you feel you went off track in one answer, do not let it take you in downward spiral. Do not think of it and maintain your composure

o Talk with passion; you have a lot of things to talk about

o Print out pictures of special events such as volunteer activities you did, color print your publications and have a copy to hand to each interviewer

o Bring with you a writing pad and a pen, write down your questions and important discussion points with interviewer

Finally, on the interview day
Make sure to take the contact information of your interviewers from the coordinator


It is an option to send thank you email to your interviewer; it is preferable that you send the email if you had a great interview. I would say 30% of the candidates send thank you email, and in less than 5% it makes a difference as the final score is already sent to the residency/fellowship coordinator after the interview. But if you choose to do that, here are some hints:

– Write in perfect English, there should be zero errors in the email, especially punctuation. Have somebody with English experience review it for you


o Do not send generic thank you emails or letters, these are useless. Use specific discussion points from the interview in the email such as discussions about your publications, research, research opportunities etc

o Do not send letters/cards, these are outdated. If you decide to do so, you should have exemplary clear hand-writing, otherwise it will count against you!

o Maintain contact with residents/fellows from that program and consider sending them greeting emails in holidays


Rank Order List

After you conclude your interviews, you want to submit you Rank Order List (ROL). The National Ranking Residency Program (NRMP) uses complicated algorithm to match residency spots with candidates. Here are some advises for you

o Rank the program that you like the most on top, then the next one. The NRMP algorithm gives an edge to your preference over the program preference. Which means even if you have less change in matching inJohns Hopkins, that’s in case you interviewed there, rank John’s Hopkinsthe first

o Rank all programs that you interviewed in, unless there is a horrible program that you do not want it (we never encountered this scenario)

o Make sure you submit your list before deadline

These are some of the advices we are able to complete out of our experiences

ونشارك معكم كذلك رابط من موقع طبيب سعودي في أمريكا بخصوص المقابلات للتخصصات الطبية

العودة لقائمة التقديم على البرامج الأمريكية

العودة للقائمة الرئيسية