An equivalence study of interview platform: Does videoconference technology impact medical school acceptance rates of different groups?
Web-based interviewing may be an effective element of a medical school’s larger approach to promotion of holistic review, as recommended by the Association of American Medical Colleges, by facilitating the feasibility of including rural and community physicians in the interview process. Only 10% of medical schools offer videoconference interviews to applicants and little is known about the impact of this interview modality on the admissions process. This study investigated the impact of overall acceptance rates using videoconference interviews and face-to-face interviews in the medical school selection process using an equivalence trial design. The University of New Mexico School of Medicine integrated a videoconferencing interview option for community and rural physician interviewers in a pseudo-random fashion during the 2014–2016 admissions cycles. Logistic regression was conducted to examine whether videoconference interviews impacted acceptance rates or the characteristics of accepted students. Demographic, admissions and diversity factors were analyzed that included applicant age, MCAT score, cumulative GPA, gender, underrepresented in medicine, socioeconomic status and geographic residency. Data from 752 interviews were analyzed. Adjusted rates of acceptance for face-to-face (37.0%; 95% CI 28.2, 46.7%) and videoconference (36.1%; 95% CI 17.8, 59.5%) interviews were within an a priori ± 5% margin of equivalence. Both interview conditions yielded highly diverse groups of admitted students. Having a higher medical college admission test score, grade point average, and self-identifying as disadvantaged increased odds of admission in both interview modalities. Integration of the videoconference interview did not impact the overall acceptance of a highly diverse and qualified group of applicants, and allowed rural and community physicians to participate in the medical school interview process as well as allowed campus faculty and medical student committee members to interview remotely.
KeywordsMedical school admissions Videoconference interviews Admission rates Skype Holistic review
The authors acknowledge the University of New Mexico School of Medicine Admissions Committee and Office of Admissions staff, which were instrumental in the successful implementation of the videoconference interview and remote web-based participation.
- Addams, A. N., Bletzinger, R. B., Sondheimer, H. M., White, S. E., & Johnson, L. M. (2010). Roadmap to diversity: Integrating holistic review practices into medical school admission processes. Washington, DC: Association of American Medical Colleges.Google Scholar
- Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2012). National healthcare quality and disparities reports, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/research/findings/nhqrdr/nhqrdr11/qrdr11.html. Accessed 28 Sept 2016.
- American College of Physicians. (2010). Racial and ethnic disparities in health care, Updated 2010, Philadelphia, PA. http://www.acponline.org/advocacy/current_policy_papers/assets/racial_disparities.pdf. Accessed 17 June 2013.
- Association of American Medical Colleges. (2006). America needs a more diverse physician workforce, Washington, DC. https://www.aamc.org/newsroom/pressrel/2006/physician_diversity_facts.pdf. Accessed 28 Jan 2010.
- Association of American Medical Colleges. (2012). Using MCAT data in medical student selection, Washington, DC. https://www.aamc.org/students/download/267622/data/mcatstudentselectionguide.pdf. Accessed 16 Sept 2014.
- Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Medical School Admissions Requirements (MSAR) for U.S. and Canadian Medical Schools report. https://services.aamc.org/msar/schoolDetails/4947/selectionFactors. Accessed 8 Mar 2016.
- Coleman, A. L., Palmer, S. R., & Winnick, S. Y. (2008). Roadmap to diversity: Key legal and educational policy foundations for medical schools. Washington, DC: Association of American Medical Colleges.Google Scholar
- Dunleavy, D., Sondheimer, H., Castillo-Page, L., & Bletzinger, R. B. (2011). Medical school admissions: More than grades and test scores analysis in brief. Washington, DC: Association of American Medical Colleges.Google Scholar
- Haddouk, L. (2014). Intersubjectivity in video interview. Studies in Health Technology and Informatics, 199, 158–162.Google Scholar
- Haddouk, L. (2015). Presence at a distance. Studies in Health Technology and Informatics, 219, 208–212.Google Scholar
- Saha, S., & Shipman, S. (2006). The rationale for diversity in the health professions: A review of the evidence. United States: Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources Administration, Bureau of Health Professions.Google Scholar
- Stith, A. Y., Nelson, A. R., & Smedle, B. D. (2003). Unequal treatment: Confronting racial and ethnic disparities in health care. Washington: National Academies Press.Google Scholar