Do Multiple Mini-Interview and Traditional Interview Scores Differ in Their Associations With Acceptance Offers Within and Across Five California Medical Schools?

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Abstract

Purpose

In single-school studies, multiple mini-interview (MMI) and traditional interview (TI) scores are associated with acceptance offers. Unexamined is whether scores at one school are associated with acceptance at other schools; such analyses would mitigate single-school design biases and better estimate how well interviews capture desired applicant attributes. Using data from the 5 California Longitudinal Evaluation of Admissions Practices (CA-LEAP) medical schools, the authors examined associations of MMI and TI scores with acceptance offers within and across schools.

Method

The analyses included applicants who interviewed at ≥1 CA-LEAP school during the 2011–2013 admissions cycles. Three CA-LEAP schools employed TIs and 2 employed MMIs. Interview scores were standardized (z scores: mean = 0, SD = 1), and associations with acceptance offers were examined within and across schools in analyses stratified by school, adjusting for applicant sociodemographics, academic metrics, year, and total number of interviews.

Results

Of 4,993 applicants interviewed, 428 (8.6%) interviewed at both MMI schools, 681 (13.6%) at ≥2 TI schools, and 1,327 (26.6%) at ≥1 MMI and ≥1 TI school. For each school, acceptance was associated with interview score at that school and also with interview scores at the other 4 schools. Cross-school associations of MMI versus TI scores with acceptance did not differ statistically.

Conclusions

Interview score at a given school was associated with acceptance at the other 4 schools, with no significant differences in associations for MMIs versus TIs. The findings suggest both MMIs and TIs captured attributes valued by admissions teams across CA-LEAP schools.

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