Common interview questions for a Veterinary Medicine course

Although the majority of undergraduate degree courses don’t require you to attend an interview you may find that for more specialist courses, such as Veterinary Medicine, an interview is part of the application process.

The majority of us have wanted to be a vet at some point in our lives, usually as small children, but few of us have the academic intelligence and dedication to see it through to becoming our chosen career.

As well as the standard UCAS application process as a potential Veterinary Medicine student you may have some additional things you need to do in order to be accepted. The BioMedical Admissions Test (BMAT) is one and an interview is the other.

The purpose of an interview is to help the admissions tutors establish that you’re suitably committed to a career in Veterinary Medicine and that you’ve considered all aspects of the course and career.

You’ll need to demonstrate that you’ve considered all of this when you answer your questions during the interview.

When are the Veterinary Medicine interviews carried out?

The universities usually carry out the interviews from November onwards but you should contact each university you apply to to confirm the interview dates.

What happens during a Veterinary Medicine interview?

Interviews for Veterinary Medicine courses are usually conducted by a single interviewer or a traditional three person panel. Check the format your university uses before you apply so there are no surprises.

Your interviewer(s) will ask you a variety of questions on subjects including your personal experience, why you want to study Veterinary Medicine, your work experience, and some general Veterinary Medicine questions that might include cases that have recently appeared in the press or veterinary journals.

How do I prepare for my Veterinary Medicine interview?

It’s impossible to prepare for every question in your interview because you won’t know what they are until you get there.

However, there are some broad categories you can look at and start to think of answers for. It’s important not to try and memorise answers to questions as the interviewer(s) wants to see that you’re able to think on your feet, not just parrot back stock answers.

You’ll need to be able to explain clearly and confidently why you want to study Veterinary Medicine and why you want to study it at the university that’s interviewing you.

You should be able to discuss the particular aspects of the syllabus that interest you and how your work experience so far will help you during your degree.

Read good quality newspapers and veterinary journals so you’re up to date on the latest research methods and findings. For example, badger culling and TB are hot topics in the news so you’re likely to be asked questions about your thoughts.

What are some of the common interview questions for a Veterinary Medicine course?

Each university will have its own set of questions for Veterinary Medicine applicants but there are some common questions that can help you to prepare for your interview.

Common interview questions include:

  • What is it about becoming a vet that appeals to you?
  • How would you like to make a difference in your career?
  • Tell us about your most recent work experience placement.
  • What are the negative aspects of becoming a vet?
  • How would you approach giving someone bad news about their pet?
  • You suspect an animal is being mistreated – how would you deal with this?
  • Give some examples of times you’ve shown the skills needed to be a good vet?
  • How do you think you’ll cope with the demanding academic schedule during your degree?
  • Should commercial considerations outweigh the welfare of animals?
  • Is badger culling acceptable if it stops the spread of bovine TB?
  • Would you refuse to treat an ill or injured animal if you knew the owner couldn’t pay for treatment?
  • Should exotic animals be kept as pets?

The best course of action is to keep calm and try to answer confidently. If you don’t know the answer to the question then it’s best to be honest about that and ask them to expand what they’re asking.

The interviewer(s) isn’t trying to catch you out, they just want to see that you’re committed and knowledgeable about Veterinary Medicine.