Medical Student Perceptions of the Virtual Interview Process for Emergency Medicine Residency Application
Learning Objectives: Investigate medical student perceptions of the virtual interview process.
Background: In the setting of the Covid-19 pandemic, emergency medicine (EM) residency programs engaged an unprecedented transition to virtual interviews. The use of virtual interviews and their impact on medical students had not been previously studied in the published literature.
Objectives: We aimed to investigate medical student perceptions of the virtual interview process.
Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional survey-based study of EM applicants who interviewed at our community teaching hospital during the 2020-21 season. The survey was sent electronically to all interviewees following Match Day, excluding applicants who had completed a clinical rotation in our department. The survey consisted of 8 Likert scale questions assessing specific components of the interview and overall impressions of the virtual interview format.
Results: A total of 113 surveys were distributed with 34 (30%) interviewees completing the survey. Overall, respondents were 32.4% Female and the mean number of virtual interviews attended was 15.3 (SD = 4.8). Responses to questions regarding overall impression and specific components of the virtual interview are reported in Table 1. Regarding how the nationwide transition to a virtual interview process affected their match, 32% responded negatively, 41% responded neutral, 26% responded positively. Most interviewees (71.9%) agreed that virtual interviews should be offered as part of the traditional residency interview cycle.
Conclusion: Medical students felt that our virtual interview process benefited their experience overall. While the nationwide transition is not thought to have benefitted their match, students feel that virtual interviews should be offered as an option moving forwards. The study was limited by small sample size and single-center setting.