Development of a Medical School Admissions Interview Phase 2: Predictive Validity of Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Attributes

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Streyffeler, Lisa ; Altmaier, Elizabeth M. ; Kuperman, Samuel ; Patrick, Luke E. (2009)
  • Publisher: Co-Action Publishing
  • Journal: Medical Education Online (issn: 1087-2981, eissn: 1087-2981)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.3402/meo.v10i.4379

Background: Interest in improving medical school admissions processes led to the development of a structured admissions interview to eliminate potential bias and provide valid information for selection. This article reports on the degree to which this interview, along with other admissions variables, predicted later student performance during medical school. Methods: All applicants considered for admission participated in the new interview. Interview scores and regular admissions data were compiled. Measures of performance in cognitive (e.g., written test scores) and non-cognitive (e.g., ratings of listening skills) domains were gathered during participants’ enrollment in medical school and correlated with measures gathered during the admissions process. Results: Cognitive predictors predicted later performance in cognitive domains but did not predict non-cognitive performance. Both written and interview-based measures of non-cognitive abilities predicted performance in non-cognitive domains. Both cognitive and non-cognitive predictors predicted grades in clinical rotations, which presumably reflect a mixture of cognitive and non-cognitive abilities. Conclusions: Our results do not support the predictive validity of our interview-based measure above other cognitive and non-cognitive admissions variables more easily gathered. However, in some domains, interview-based variables did incrementally predict medical school performance.
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