Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) Guide

Medistudents Team
June 12, 2024

All UK medical schools require potential candidates to attend an interview as part of their selection process, and most medical schools will use the Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) format for 2025 entry. This guide will provide you with everything you need to know about the interview format, questions and scenarios, scoring and how to prepare effectively.

You'll also find further support and advice in our complete guide to medical school interviews.

MMI Interview

Unlike traditional panel interviews, an MMI, as the name suggests, consists of a variety of ‘stations’, each presented as individual mini-interviews. Although the majority of UK medical schools use an MMI framework, the execution can vary considerably, meaning the practical experience of the MMI may be very different depending on your chosen university.

MMI Format

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, many universities have continued to conduct their interviews online. During the MMI, you’ll be presented with various stations, each assessing your suitability for medical school. You'll be given a set time in which to complete each mini interview, which is usually between five and ten minutes per station. Planning or preparation time, of approximately one minute, is also usually provided prior to starting each one, allowing you to read any instructions or information. However, planning time isn’t always given. For example, if you’re undertaking a panel-style station, be prepared for the instance that you may go straight into an interview. Even with planning time, you’ll be transitioning quickly between stations, which can seem quite intense, but the whole process will generally only last approximately one hour.

The number of stations, the time set for each one, and the overall length of the MMI will vary depending on the medical school.

MMI Scenarios

Within your MMI, you may experience some or all of the following types of stations:

1. Traditional panel style with interview questions or scenarios
This will include a small selection panel that will assess your suitability to study medicine through a series of questions or discussions based on set scenarios. You may be asked questions relating to your personal attributes, your motivation to study medicine or your interest and knowledge of the medical field. Alternatively, you may be presented with scenarios or topics, for example, relating to NHS current topics or linked to medical ethics, and asked to discuss your views about these. Below, you will find more information about the different types of questions you may experience. And for help answering these types of questions, we have a complete guide to medical school interviews, which will talk you through how to approach them.
2. Role play scenarios
These types of stations usually involve working with an actor and require you to role-play a scenario you’re likely to encounter during your medical training or as a doctor. The situation will not always be clinical-based but will aim to replicate the skills required in common clinical interactions. For example, this may involve breaking bad news, dealing with a mistake you have made or discussing someone’s concerns with them; all of these scenarios could equally be given to you within a clinical context, but they will not necessarily be. Regardless of their context, these role-play scenarios aim to assess core skills and values required for medical school, including empathy, communication and listening skills and your ability to deal with challenging situations.
3. Tasks involving relaying information
These types of tasks aim to assess your communication skills, specifically related to your ability to simplify information and present it in a clear and concise way; a key skill required when relaying complex medical information to patients. This could be framed in a multitude of ways, for example, asking you to share or discuss information from a short clip or written piece or explaining a common concept or even medical term. Whatever the topic, the emphasis is on how you communicate the necessary information to ensure that it is easy to understand and audience-friendly. Although the task may include an academic element, such as explaining a medical or scientific term, its main aim is not to assess your academic ability but rather your communication skills.
4. A group task or group interview
This type of station intends to assess skills, such as communication, teamwork and possibly even leadership, which are key for studying and working within medicine. Regardless of the group task, it will be your ability to demonstrate these core skills, which will be paramount to your performance during this mini-interview. If you’ve applied for a medical school which adopts a problem-based learning method, you might encounter this type of station as a means of assessing your suitability for this teaching style and ensuring that you will thrive in a group work environment.

You’ll likely experience a combination of these mini-interview stations throughout your MMI, with the aim of assessing your skills and qualities in different situations to ensure your suitability for a career in medicine.

MMI Score

Generally, your performance will be scored at each station by different trained assessors, using set criteria outlined by the individual medical school. More information about their assessment criteria and how you will be scored during the MMI may be available on your chosen medical school’s website or in the information you receive with your interview invite.

The challenge with the MMI is demonstrating the required skills and attributes at each station in the relatively short time given. However, undertaking a variety of mini-interviews, that are scored individually, presents multiple possibilities for meeting the assessment criteria. This is particularly positive if you perform worse than you’d hoped within one scenario, as each station is a new opportunity to showcase your skills.

Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) for Medicine

Medical Interview Questions

MMI interview questions aim to assess that you have the required knowledge, skills and values to support you throughout your training and within your future career. Through the different mini-interviews, the selection panel/assessors will explore areas such as the following:

  1. Your motivation for medicine
    There are more details about the sometimes dreaded ‘why medicine’ question below, but essentially, medical schools want to establish why you have applied to study medicine, what motivates you, and how dedicated you are to pursuing it as a career. Selection panels will look for candidates to demonstrate that they have considered their decision carefully and are committed to their chosen career path.
  2. Your interest in your chosen medical school
    Medical schools are looking for applicants who have researched and carefully considered where they have chosen to apply, and, therefore, are knowledgeable, enthusiastic and show a genuine interest in their university, the curriculum they offer and the opportunities available. Our medical school interview guide has a page dedicated to each individual medical school, where you’ll find information about the teaching, the clinical partnerships (i.e. the hospitals and healthcare settings used), extracurricular and additional opportunities offered and their interview process, to help you demonstrate your knowledge of your chosen medical school.
  3. The depth and breadth of your interest
    Delving into your engagement with medical news, research, and developments demonstrates your interest in the profession and the steps you have taken to deepen your knowledge and understanding of healthcare.
  4. Your personal attributes
    Focusing on the key skills and qualities required for a medical career, including empathy, communication, teamwork and problem-solving skills. These will span across various stations, with skills such as communication likely to be assessed during each mini-interview, regardless of the context and the other areas being assessed.
  5. Your personal insight
    Assessing your understanding of your strengths and weaknesses, which in turn supports you in identifying how to continue to learn and develop.This includes reflecting on your skills, how you learn, and how you deal with stress, criticism, mistakes, and failures to better understand how you can improve.
  6. Your work experience
    This links to ensuring your decision to apply to medical school is well considered. Stations relating to your work experience will explore your commitment to studying medicine, the experience you gained and your understanding of the role’s demands.
  7. Your knowledge of key topics
    This includes your understanding of key issues relating to the NHS and current topics, as well as your knowledge of the NHS and medical ethics. This links closely to your engagement with medical news, research and developments, which will support you with stations relating to key topics and medical politics. You can find a wealth of information relating to the NHS, various NHS current topics and medical ethics in our medical school interview guide.

‘Why Medicine’ Answer

The question of why you want to study medicine can seem like the most straightforward yet daunting question within a medical school interview. You may be worried about standing out from the crowd or giving a deep and meaningful explanation, but this often results in applicants giving a cliche response. Our advice would be to keep it simple! The question asked why you want to study medicine, so focus on giving an honest and personal response. To help you prepare, reflect on the interests and experiences that have led you to apply for medical school. Finally, avoid exaggerating your reasons for wanting to be a doctor or your experiences that have influenced you.

How to Prepare for the Multiple Mini Interview (MMI)

Dedicating as much time as possible to your MMI preparation will ensure you give yourself the best possible chance of success. Although it’s always difficult to predict what MMI interview questions or scenarios you’ll be faced with, you can prepare by ensuring that you feel confident discussing the key areas outlined in the ‘Medical Interview Questions’ section above and that you have relevant examples to support your points.

Some key tips to help you prepare for the interview are:

  1. Practise, practise, practise
    Practise answering example questions as much as you can. This will help you develop confidence and improve your ability to answer questions under pressure. Try to incorporate different questions around the same topics or similar questions to gain experience identifying what the question is asking and ensuring that your response is relevant rather than shaped by what you want to share.

    While it's challenging to anticipate the questions you'll encounter, one effective strategy is to record yourself responding to interview questions and role-play scenarios. This allows you to review your answers objectively, assessing your communication style, body language, and clarity of responses. You can also seek feedback by converting your video recordings and sharing them with trusted individuals who can pinpoint areas where you excel and identify areas that may require improvement.
  2. Identify areas for improvement
    As you work through the key areas listed above, note any areas you need to improve and dedicate additional time to developing these. This could involve additional reading or research, gaining more experience in certain areas, or developing core skills.
  3. Keep a notebook of useful information
    Try to get into a habit of writing down useful information or experiences as they occur to support you when you come to prepare for your interview. By making notes of interesting journals or new articles you’ve read or reflecting on your work experiences or extracurricular activities, you’ll have a wealth of information to draw upon when preparing for your interview and trying to identify valuable examples to support your answers.
  4. Make the most of your opportunities
    Although your work experience will be valuable in your preparations for medical school, ensure that you make the most of other opportunities that you may also have. This could be anything from conversations with medical professionals if the opportunity arises, or current students if you attend an open day, to taking advantage of opportunities to develop your skills through extracurricular activities or extend your knowledge through additional reading, online talks or conferences.

Our medical school interview guide is designed to help you effectively prepare for the MMI. It highlights common MMI questions and explains how to answer them.

MMI Tips

When your MMI arrives, trust in your preparations and your ability to complete any task you’re given, and remember the following key points:

  1. Use your time wisely
    Use your preparation time to identify what skills and characteristics are being assessed, what you may encounter, and how you’ll approach the task initially. You have limited time for each mini-interview, so this will help you meet the challenge of demonstrating the required skills within the given time.
  2. Answer the question given
    Avoid trying to bend questions to suit what you have prepared or what you would prefer to share with the interviewers; this may make it seem like you’re unable to answer the question given and will make it difficult for interviewers to score points against the assessment criteria for that question. Preparing for general topics rather than set questions and practising with various questions will develop your ability to identify what questions are asking you and how to draw upon skills and experiences to ensure that you address them within your answer.

Avoid rehearsed answers
This links closely to the above tip; preparing set answers will not only sound rehearsed to interviewers but will also make answering the question more challenging, as it’s difficult to predict what each medical school will ask, and therefore, you’ll be more inclined to attempt to bend questions to suit your rehearsed answer. Instead, focus on preparing for topics, skills and qualities you may be asked about, ensuring you can confidently answer and support this with valuable examples from your work experience and extracurricular activities.

Secrets for Success

Dedicating sufficient time to preparing and practising for the MMI is the most valuable thing you can do to ensure your success. Remember to prepare for the key areas given in the question section and practise various questions and scenarios to become comfortable responding to the unknown. When answering questions, support these with meaningful examples, drawing upon your work experience, volunteering or extracurricular activities to demonstrate your skills, knowledge and experience.
Finally, take assurance from the fact that you’ve been invited to interview, showing that the selection panel is interested in your application. Believe in your preparation for the interview and approach it with confidence.

Preparing for the Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) for Medicine