Good luck if you have a midwifery interview coming up! I'm proud of the amount of effort candidates put in, midwifery is in good hands.
These resources have been put together so you have a comprehensive list for every aspect of your interview preparation.
These are for pre-registration midwifery course interviews i.e. the midwifery degree or masters which leads to registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council.
As you work through remember not to get bogged down in all the little details, and keep thinking about how all of this prep is for developing your skills so you can offer excellent support for women and families one day!
Literacy and Numeracy Tests
Remember to check your university website to see if there are practice tests as these can offer the most specific practice possible.
Leeds University offers good free maths instruction on their website.
The NHS offers some free numeracy assessments and revision at SNAP (the sign up process is a little tricky – many candidates report having to email or ring to get log in details but it’s a helpful resource once you get there).
There’s a practice maths test you can find here on Midwife Diaries
Group Interviews can be set by universities to see how you interact with others and look at your communication, leadership and teamwork skills. You'll generally have a task or topic to discuss in a small group of candidates.
- Do try power posing if you get the chance – body language is really important
- Try not to keep looking at the examiner, let things flow naturally
- Don’t feel the need to be pushy, thinking hard about a question and offering a really good solution is much better than answering quickly
- Use polite words like please and thank you
- Don’t be afraid to bring up controversial ideas, but be polite and considerate
- Do add something to the discussion or activity and actively listen
- Try and make a real relationship with people on the day – if you’re successful in getting a place, you may have just made a connection which means as much to you as midwifery – but also in good interviews it’s excellent to show rapport with others and bring in things you’ve talked about earlier that day if appropriate
Multiple Mini Interviews (MMIs)
MMIs were developed within the last fifteen years and started in an American medical school. The school noticed that standard one to one interviews didn’t predict how well doctors performed when they started training. They were concerned that vital skills like empathy, compassion, interpersonal skills and ethical reasoning were not assessed well enough in standard interviews.
MMIs have now travelled to the UK and are being used in many universities.
They can differ in format but they tend to be a ‘circuit’ of different ‘stations’ i.e. tasks, questions, or scenarios for you to respond to.
You’ll have different assessors – admissions tutors, mentors, ‘service users’ (which just means clients who’ve accessed maternity care recently) and lecturers, occasionally senior students, or sometimes even actors who you’ll role play with.
A common setup is for different assessors to be in different interview rooms or at different tables.
MMI questions assess your:
• Empathy, compassion and emotional intelligence
• Inherent ability to build good relationships with clients and families from many different cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds
• Academic ability and interest in learning
• Ability and desire to reflect and improve
• Ability to be a ‘determined advocate’ and autonomous professional
• Awareness and ability to provide privacy and dignity for clients
• Ability to work within a multidisciplinary team and high-level communication skills
MMI questions can be very random, for instance: ‘how would you manage a situation at work where someone is stealing money?’
If you are given a question that is not midwifery related, don’t panic, know everyone is in the same boat, there is no right answer and being uncertain yet offering lots of ideas within the time allotted is the point!
It’s scary not to have your answers on the tip of your tongue but it's the key to coping with being put on the spot.
Everyone will be feeling off balance, your problem-solving skills will be important to demonstrate.
A short course on MMIs can be found here - and you can email me on firstname.lastname@example.org for one to one coaching.
Traditional One to One Interviews
Interview School series
A Practice Interview you can 'attend' at home
Reading and Research
Current issues are often addressed here on MidwifeDiaries.com, subscribe for a weekly newsletter (the newsletter includes thoughts and content that I don’t share elsewhere)
The midwives' union, the Royal College of Midwives has a news section which is great for keeping up to date
The Secret Community For Midwives In The Making is a group you can join and is great for support throughout
My book, Becoming A Student Midwife: The Survival Guide For Passionate Applicants has guidance for the whole process and has many practice interview questions and sample answers (not to mention over 100 5-star reviews on Amazon which I'm still delighted and amazed by!)
You could also book a practice interview with me via Skype/phone
I really hope this helps.
To leave you I want to say it's unlikely you'll get rid of 100% of your nerves (though the above resources will help). If you're reading this post then midwifery will mean a lot to you so nerves are to be expected.
But to paraquote the poet Jack Gilbert, without bravery your life is likely to be small, probably far smaller than you'd like.
And bravery often leads to some of the best things in life.
Wishing you the very best of luck!
p.s. Have you got a good midwifery interview resource I've not mentioned here? Leave me a comment below!