Medicine @ Trinity, Oxford in 2017

Interview format

4x 15-20 min interviews, each half a day apart

Interview content

Ethical questions, personal statement, science (biology and chemistry)

Best preparation

Did past papers, read about current affairs for BMAT essay, revised A-level science

Advice in hindsight


Final thoughts

Stay up to date about NHS and current affairs; stay calm!

Remember this advice isn't official. There is no guarantee it will reflect your experience because university applications can change between years. Check the official Cambridge and Oxford websites for more accurate information on this year's application format and the required tests.

Also, someone else's experience may not reflect your own. Most interviews are more like conversations than tests and like, any conversation, they are quite interactive.

Interview Format

Test taken: BMAT

Number of interviews: 4

Skype interview: No

Time between each interview: half a day

Length of interviews: 15-20 minutes each

What happened in your interview? How did you feel?

Two of my interviews were composed of ethical questions combined with questions about my personal statement. Despite the common belief that tutors don’t care, they asked me a lot about my non-academic extra-curriculars (especially sport) so don’t think these things aren’t important! You can relate these things to work life balance too.

The other two interviews were based on science - mainly biology and a bit of chemistry. Surprisingly, both of my interviews (at 2 different colleges) asked about one particular concept. There were also some questions about the details of genetic engineering.

Overall I felt that I clicked really well with the tutors from the colleges I ended up at. They wanted you to feel comfortable and were genuinely very nice and helped you if you didn’t completely understand something!

How did you prepare?

I used a few practise papers and read about current affairs for my BMAT essay. I also used CGP revision guides for the science section, which were a brilliant level of detail for me.

What advice do you have for future applicants?

Looking back, what advice would you give to your past self?

If I were you I’d keep up to date on the NHS and general affairs- could really imagine Brexit / NHS related questions coming up. I used to read BBC health on the way home from school - doing something little and often is probably the most effective thing for medicine interviews at Oxbridge because really anything could come up.

My school did a practice interview, but I didn’t think I’d apply to Oxbridge so this was more generally designed for London universities. I still found this very helpful to build up confidence and realise you need to talk slowly, just like in a conversation. It also made me appreciate how you are allowed to have a bit of time to think.

I think I also had the attitude that I had nothing to lose, so nerves didn't really get to me. This meant that I stayed calm and could really use my brain during the interviews. I know Oxbridge is an incredible opportunity, but really for medicine it doesn’t matter at all where you study! You have 3 other unis to get a place at, which arguably might offer a better course than Oxbridge (at the end of the day Oxbridge is just a brand and the medicine course at Oxbridge isn't very modern!). So really think of your interview as one shot of four! If you have that attitude, I really think you can make the most of the opportunity and not let the nerves get the better of you. Oxford/Cambridge medicine interviews sound more intimidating than just medicine interviews, but really that is all they are.