Oxford University Interview Questions
About Oxford University
Oxford’s Medicine Course is highly prestigious and competitive, with Oxford University ranked as the world’s best institution for medical and health teaching and research.
Oxford takes a traditional approach with distinct pre-clinical and clinical phases, allowing students to fully understand and explore the scientific theory underlying clinical practice before stepping foot onto hospital wards. The school provides excellent teaching, immersive practicals and great resources.
The medical student body is one of the most diverse at the university.
MMI or Panel?
The Oxford medicine interview is in a traditional interview format. Most candidates will have at least two panel interviews lasting 20-45 minutes.
What to expect on interview day?
Those shortlisted will be interviewed at two colleges: where possible, one will be your college of choice (or allocation, if you made an open application), the second will be allocated to you randomly.The dress code is very smart.
Interview scoring system
There are usually two interviewers; a medical practitioner and an admissions tutor.
The characteristics Oxford looks for/form the selection criteria are as follows:
Empathy: ability and willingness to imagine the feelings of others and understand the reasons for the views of others
Motivation: a reasonably well-informed and strong desire to practise medicine
Communication: ability to make knowledge and ideas clear using language appropriate to the audience
Honesty and integrity
Ability to work with others
Capacity for sustained and intense work
Alignment of individual values and behaviours with the values of the NHS Constitution.
Problem-solving: critical thinking, analytical approach
Intellectual curiosity: keenness to understand the reason for observations; depth; tendency to look for meaning; enthusiasm and curiosity in science
Communication skills: willingness and ability to express clearly and effectively; ability to listen; compatibility with tutorial format
Oxford advises you whether or not you have been short-listed for an interview as soon as possible at the end of November. Interviews usually take place over the first three weeks of December, sometimes even earlier than this.
Some information is sent about three weeks before the interviews, and the rest is given verbally during the interviews.
All examiners are usually really friendly and ask lots of follow-up questions based on the answers that you give them.
What to expect after the interview?
Following your interviews, your college of choice (or allocation if you made an open application) will write to inform you of the outcome. Your letter or email will be scheduled to arrive on a specified date in early January.
Oxford recommended reading the Medical Schools Council’s Consensus Statement on the role of the doctor The Consensus Statement , as well as Guiding Principles for the Admission of Medical Students.
Take your A-Level Biology textbook with you so that you can have a quick recap over the key topics that you may find harder. Learn some content beyond the A-Level syllabus.
Practice doing problem-solving questions based on scientific topics or illnesses.
Review your personal statement and make sure you know all of the scientific basis of the illnesses/diseases you included in it.
You cannot predict whether your application has been successful by counting the number of interviews you receive, so don’t become anxious if you receive either more or fewer than you expect!
Example interview questions
What do you think you could contribute to college life?
Why do you want to study medicine/be a doctor?
Why the University of Oxford?
What are the ethical implications of taking steroids for sporting activities?
Should patients be allowed to sell their kidney(s)?
Values and skills
What qualities are needed to be a good doctor?
How would you reassure a patient who is worried about receiving their biopsy results?
Tell me about a recent medical technology advancement you are interested in.