If you’ve made it through to the interview stage, congratulations, you’re almost there. Be reassured that the competition for places at the interview stage is now much lower, with around 2 candidates interviewed per job. If you can show them that you are a safe doctor, you have some knowledge of what a career in radiology entails and that you are someone they could work with in the future, then you’ll do well. To get an interview, you have to do well enough at the MSRA. Make sure you’ve read our guidance on this vital exam.
A few days after your MSRA score is announced, you’ll receive an invite to book your interview if you’ve met the cut-off. The interview is booked via the ORIEL system and is on a first-come-first-served basis. You will have to select a date and time for your interview, and you have the option of changing this for a short period after you submit it. In the 2022-2023 application cycle, the interview dates are between the 2nd - 7th of March 2023. After booking your interview slot, you will be asked to sign an online declaration, essentially stating that you’ve read the guidance you’ll receive about the interview. Don’t miss this step, as you won’t be interviewed without signing this. As soon as you receive the link to your interview via email, test it to make sure it works. If there are any issues you then have ample time to raise them with the recruitment team.
Since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, the interview for radiology applicants has transitioned online: what used to be a 3-station face-to-face interview in London is now a 15-minute online Microsoft Teams call. According to the latest information, this is set to remain the same for this year.
Make sure you have the Microsoft Teams application downloaded on whatever device you will use before the day, and that you have tested that your login works. It’s worthwhile having a backup device, such as your phone or tablet, just in case something happens to your computer in the middle of the interview. Although you won’t be penalised for this (the recruitment team are quite forgiving and specifically state that they will not penalise you for technical difficulties), it won’t help your performance if you’re stressed about your laptop running out of battery or your wi-fi going down. Join your Microsoft Teams call 5 minutes early so that you are waiting in the lobby when your time starts. You'll see a screen that states the host will join the meeting shortly. Next, you will meet an administrator who will talk you through the format of the interview again, ensure you’ve signed your declaration and review your identification. You’ll need to present a passport/driving license etc. to prove that you are who you say you are. They will also want to look around your room to make sure you’re alone and don’t have any notes or recording equipment to hand. They will then put you through to the interviewers. In the interview, you are likely to have 2 consultant radiologists on the panel who will be asking questions and taking notes, and also a ‘lay representative’. The lay representative is not medical and does not contribute to your scoring; they are there to ensure candidates are marked consistently and fairly across different interviewers. These are also the people who you will raise concerns with if you have any issues or complaints. They may pop in and out of your interview, so try not to be distracted by this. After 15 minutes, the interview is complete. You simply hang up the call. The interview is marked digitally, and you will get feedback on your performance after you’ve preferenced your deaneries a few weeks later.
Although we never get to see the mark scheme and candidates cannot disclose exactly what they were asked at the interview, it’s not rocket science to anticipate what they might want to ask. Every domain they could possibly assess is included in the person specification:
References: - Health Education England 2023 | CLINICAL RADIOLOGY -ST1 ENTRY CRITERIA Essential Criteria Qualifications. (n.d.). [online] Available at: https://specialtytraining.hee.nhs.uk/portals/1/Content/Person%20Specifications/Clinical%20Radiology/CLINICAL%20RADIOLOGY%20-%20ST1%202023.pdf [Accessed 15 Nov. 2022].