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Tell me about yourself.

Talk us through your CV/application form.

Tell us about your background.

These questions are essentially similar and often are the first question asked at the interview. Use this question to emphasise your positive points. It is a good opportunity to utilise the vagueness of the question to make a good impression.

Remember, you and your CV are a lot more than just medicine. So in answering the question, dwell briefly on the various aspects of your experience, including:

  • Clinical (your training so far and the skills acquired)
  • Academic (teaching, research and audit)
  • Generic skills (communication, team player, leadership skills)
  • Social (family, hobbies etc.)

Finish your answer on an enthusiastic note by spending a few seconds on your career plans.

Summarise your specialty experience over the past 5 years


What are your interests outside of medicine; do they have any impact on how you practise medicine?

Relate your hobbies or sports interest to your practice of medicine. You could say that it helps relax you, keep fit and maintain a work-life balance.

Apart from team sports, endurance sports are seen as a sign of determination - swimming, running and cycling are all OK.

Games of skill (bridge, chess and the like) demonstrate analytical skills.

Would you rather work in a shift pattern or a traditional 24-hour on-call pattern?

Mention the pros and cons of each and then say you prefer a shift pattern (as that is what most hospitals have, in line with EWTD).

24-hour on-call allows for better continuity of care but is very tiring.
Shift pattern allows for more senior input and helps patient care.

If you were able to do one thing that could improve the well-being of the world/mankind, what would you do?

Education. The only way to change (and improve) the world is by changing the human being. Education helps you to achieve that goal.

What information technology skills do you possess?

My information technology skills are commensurate with my requirements. I am fluent in the use of MS office, PowerPoint, Database and the internet. I can conduct a literature search and am particularly interested in the use of Web 2.0 tools to improve education and training.


What was the most important event in your life?

You could be personal here. The question is about the content of your life. So you could mention the birth of your son/daughter, climbing Mount Everest etc.


Why is there no separate clinical governance section in your CV?

Discuss clinical governance and your commitment to it. Then elaborate that your CV contains all the components of clinical governance (so a separate section was not needed). Mention audits, courses attended to improve your education and training, any guidelines you have written (demonstrates your commitment to EBM and clinical effectiveness) etc.

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