Introduction: The multiple mini-interview (MMI) has been shown to be a valuable tool to aid the selection of medical students. The increasing body of research data so far has not evaluated this approach in the UK, where selection for medical training has traditionally included a single unstructured or structured interview.
Methods: MMI stations were developed and tested on volunteer candidates for admission to the MBBS 4 and MBBS 5 courses. Volunteers undertook their admissions interview before taking part in the MMI trial. Scores were compared between the two interview formats and any relationship with demographic details and the aptitude tests (UK Clinical Aptitude Test and Graduate Medical School Admissions Test) established.
Results: MBBS 4 applicants performed just as well on the MMI as they did on the traditional interview, with the MBBS 5 applicants performing better on the MMI. MBBS 4 and MBBS 5 candidates did equally well on the MMI. There was no difference in performance related to sex or age.
Discussion: MMIs are reliable, feasible and acceptable to both applicants and interviewers. Longitudinal research will shed more light on the validity of MMI as a way of measuring applicants' potential to become professional, successful doctors.