From Face-to-Face to FaceTime: Interviewing for Medical School During COVID-19
As COVID-19 continues to limit our ability to engage with each other in person, we have had to adjust our lives and daily activities to minimize the risk of spreading the virus. This adjustment includes in-person interviews during the medical school application process.
Following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidance to limit travel and maintain social distancing between individuals, medical schools are re-imagining an interview process that prioritizes safety for all involved.
With many medical schools integrating the use of video technology — such as Skype or FaceTime — to meet prospective students, the application and interview processes are drastically different this year.
The AAMC has compiled a page of resources to specifically assist students, advisors, and institutions with the move to virtual interviewing. We encourage you to review these resources, including the recently released Prep for Success in Your Virtual Interview webinar and our comprehensive Virtual Interviews: Applicant Preparation Guide, to support you in this next phase of the application process. Moreover, there is a wealth of knowledge available on the AAMC’s general Medical School Interviews page to let you know what to expect and how to plan for this step.
The AAMC has also been in conversations with medical schools to better understand how they plan to revise their interview process for the 2021 cycle and how we can support that process. As a result of those conversations, we launched the AAMC Video Interview Tool for Admissions (AAMC VITATM) — in collaboration with AAMC-member medical schools — to supplement alternatives to in-person interviews this year. One of the most important things to know about AAMC VITA is that it was designed to complement the live interview process, not replace it. Each participating medical school will determine how and at what stage it will incorporate the AAMC VITA interview into its application review process. Students are invited by a medical school to complete the AAMC VITA interview — but it will not be required of all applicants. We encourage you to review the application requirements outlined by each school to determine if or how the AAMC VITA interview will be used. For more information about the AAMC VITA interview, we encourage you to check out its website, where you can find more information about what AAMC VITA measures, sample questions, a practice interview to get you ready for the real thing, and more.
The COVID-19 pandemic is certainly changing how medical schools connect with applicants for interviews this cycle. Despite these challenges, we encourage you to remain steady on your path to a career in medicine. America needs a strong physician workforce now more than ever, and the AAMC is here to support you with the resources and information that you need to be successful.