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What is the Multiple Mini Interview (MMI)? By Onkar Sandhu

After submitting a secondary application, medical schools may invite students to interview at their campus. This typically takes the form a multiple mini interview, which is ubiquitously known as an MMI. The MMI involves multiple stations, and a student has approximately three minutes to read the question prompt outside of the interview room and plan a response. Once the three minutes are up, the student enters the room and has five minutes to give their response. Following this but prior to moving onto the next MMI station, the student typically responds to a dialogue question presented by the interviewer for an additional five minutes. The dialogue question can be a follow-up question to the station’s question prompt or it can be a unrelated question that seeks insight into the applicant’s background and experiences.

In approaching the MMI, it is important to think about what interviewers want to learn from the applicant. Instead of merely responding to the question prompt, the interviewer is looking for how the student reasons through the question. In this process, the applicant should attempt to explain his or her thought patterns and values in addition to sharing his or her own pertinent past experiences. Since MMI stations typically involve ethical dilemmas, it may be difficult to decide which direction to orient your response to the question at hand. However, stations rarely have a correct or wrong answer, and it is more important for the applicant to demonstrate his or her ability to recognize varying viewpoints, analyze the topic, and clearly communicate his or her beliefs with sound reasoning.

To fill the total of ten minutes per station, it may be useful to center responses around the four core ethical tenets of medicine. These four tenets are beneficence, nonmaleficence, respecting patient autonomy, and justice. Beneficence is the obligation to act in the patient’s best interest, and nonmaleficence is the obligation to avoid treatments or interventions in which the potential harm outweighs the potential for benefit. Respecting patient autonomy is the responsibility to respect patients’ decisions and choices about their own healthcare, and justice is the responsibility to treat similar patients with similar care. Justice also involves the fair distribution of healthcare resources.

In review, the MMI offers applicants the chance to display their positive attributes and explain how these attributes would make them well-suited for a career in medicine. At the end of the interview day, students have the ability to go on a campus tour to learn more information about the university.

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