Using multiple mini interviews as a pre-screening tool for medical student candidates completing international health electives

Caley A. Satterfield, Matthew Dacso, Premal Patel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


There continues to be an increase in the number of learners who participate in international health electives (IHEs). However, not all learners enter IHEs with the same level of knowledge, attitude, and previous experience, which puts undue burden on host supervisors and poses risks to student and patient safety. The Multiple Mini-Interview (MMI) is a technique that has become a popular method for undergraduate and postgraduate-level health science admissions programs. This paper describes the MMI process used by our program to screen first-year medical students applying for pre-clinical IHEs. Two country-specific cases were developed to assess non-cognitive skills. One hundred percent (100%) of the students (n = 48) and interviewers (n = 10) who participated in MMIs completed anonymous surveys on their experience. The majority of students rated the scenarios as realistic (>90%); 96% found the MMI format fair and balanced; 96% of students felt that they were able to clearly articulate their thoughts; 75% of students stated that they had a general understanding of how the MMIs worked; only 33% of students would have preferred a traditional one-to-one interview. Feedback from both interviewers and students was positive toward the MMI experience, and no students were identified as unfit for participation. Ultimately, 43 students participated in pre-clinical IHEs in 2016. In this paper, we will outline our MMI process, detail shortcomings, and discuss our next steps to screen medical students for IHEs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages1
JournalMedical Education Online
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2018



  • Global Health Education
  • IHEs
  • International Health Electives
  • MMIs
  • Multiple Mini Interviews

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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