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General Interview Questions/Advice (Clinical)


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Hi everyone! 


I have been invited to interview for a Clinical Psych M.A. program. The interview day will consist of both group and individual interviews with the Clinical faculty (there are 15 faculty members) along with a social with the current graduate students. I have some general questions/am seeking advice so anything would be great! Specifically:


  • Should I know a little bit about all the faculty members' research, or concentrate my focus on my POI's?
  • How many copies of my CV is an advisable number to bring? 
  • Are there any questions/scenarios that might come up that the books don't warn you about?
  • What are some good questions to ask the grad students (other than funding/average day type stuff?)
  • Is there anything you wish you'd have discussed in your interview or something you wish you'd have brought along with you? Sometimes obvious things can slip our minds completely! 

If there is anything I may not have addressed, please feel free to discuss! Thank you in advance for any responses!

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Hey! So I had an interview for a cognitive program (and 2 more coming up) so things very well might differ from yours! I know clinical programs are VERY competitive (when I interviewed, the Cog program had 7 interviewees for 5 spots...the clinical had 41 for about the same number. Though this was for a PhD program). 

These are my own experiences. They are by no means necessarily the norm. Just wanted to give you some of my own insights!

1. I would know a little bit about each. 15 is a lot of people (I had to know 7). Obviously you should focus mostly on your POI, but showing an interest in other faculty members' work shows that you could potentially be a collaborator and so they may see you as a really good fit compared to someone who wants to work with one person and one person alone. You don't have to know all their research, just a basic idea (for example, I knew one of the faculty members does working memory and auditory processing. While I do applied long-term memory, I took the time to discuss her research interests with her and mentioned how we could work together).

2. I didn't bring any, because I was under the assumption that they had all already read my CV. I guess 15 might be a good number so each faculty member can have one if they request it.

3. Applying to a Master's program, they may ask "Why a Master's program and not go straight for a PhD?" Saying you didn't think you could get in to a PhD program isn't what they are looking for. I went to a Master's first, and it was because I wasn't 100% sure what small area I wanted to get in to so it gave me the time to find what I wanted to do and better prepared me for a PhD program, so I knew if I went on to a PhD, I wouldn't quit...because I know how stressful the research is!

4. Honestly, ask them what they like about the program and what they DO NOT like. I've had graduate students be very honest with me about what they did not like about their program, and that is important. Ask how the cohort sees each other. Is everyone cooperative or is it every man or woman for themselves (an environment I could not work in). How do they manage to survive on their funding etc.

5. Nothing I can think of off the top of my head. If you ever forget a question, you could always e-mail the POI or their current grad students (I mean, most extend that offer haha).

Hope this helps you somewhat! If you have any more questions, feel free to ask!

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