Potential medics face speedy test to win a place in Ontario

May 14, 2004

A Canadian medical school has come up with a high-speed evaluator of prospective medical students.

This spring, applicants to courses at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, had to dash through 12 scenarios to test their abilities in areas such as communications, ethics, collaborative work and critical thinking.

Candidates had two minutes to understand the task and eight minutes to complete it, all the while being assessed by an interviewer assigned to that room.

Jeremy Baig, one of the 384 students being interviewed for one of 138 places at McMaster's Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine, said the speed of the process made him feel less anxious. "There was no time to be nervous because you're constantly moving."

The "multiple mini medical interview" is the result of a project by McMaster researchers. It scored higher than other methodologies in assessing candidates on the basis of personal qualities.

The researchers are holding a workshop on the admission process on June 12 and 13.

Details: www.fhs.mcmaster.ca/conted/events.html

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