Dentistry interviews

Interview information

This information is for students applying to start university in September 2021. (Information for students applying for 2022 entry will be available in autumn 2021.)

Interview dates

We will be running interviews on the following dates:

  • 9 December 2020
  • 13 January 2021 (includes Gateway to Dentistry)
  • 3 February 2021 (includes Gateway to Dentistry)
  • 10 February 2021 (includes Gateway to Dentistry)
  • 24 February 2021.

Interview platform

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, this year's interviews will be hosted remotely, via the Zoom platform. The formal interview will last approximately 20 minutes in a Structured Interview Format, with two assessors.

Responding to your interview invitation

You must respond to your interview invitation within two weeks of receiving your invitation by email. We will know you have responded if you:

  • register to attend an event;
  • add your details to the ‘I cannot attend’ option;
  • or contact our Events team to discuss options if neither of the above are appropriate.

If you have not responded to your invitation within two weeks, we will assume you no longer wish to pursue your application at Bristol, and your application will be made unsuccessful.

If you can't attend

If you can't attend an interview on any of the dates available, please select 'I cannot attend these dates' on the registration form so we can contact you. We only have certain dates available for interviews. We will do our best to offer you another slot, but cannot guarantee this.

If you cannot attend any of the interview dates given, you can select the 'I cannot attend at all' option, but please be aware that this will mean your application will then be made unsuccessful. You must attend an interview as part of the selection process.

Preparing for your interview

Familiarise yourself with the Zoom platform

You will be able to join the session using your internet browser (we recommend Google Chrome). Alternatively, you may wish to download the software to your desktop and sign up for a free account in order to get to know the system before the interview. There are some helpful tutorials available here.

Check your internet speed in advance

Do an internet speed test to ensure yours will be at least 1.5Mbps/1.5Mbps (up/down) for high quality video. If your internet speed in your preferred location is lower than advised, your interview may be at risk of disruption, so we would advise choosing a new location such as a quiet room at your school or college. 

We have prepared a template Interviewee support letter (PDF, 89kB) you might like to use to request interview space at your school or college. We suggest logging onto your Zoom invitation a few minutes prior to your interview start time so you can test your audio and video. 

Choose your location

You should choose a quiet, comfortable location for your interview where you will not be interrupted. If you are not using a desktop computer, make sure that you can comfortably hold or position your device securely to avoid it falling over during your interview. 

Please position yourself so you have a neutral background. Ensure you are well-lit – sitting with a window in front of you is ideal. Try to avoid sitting with a window directly behind you. 

You may find that using a set of headphones is useful to reduce the amount of background noise and improve your overall sound quality. 

Tasks to prepare in advance

  • Matchbox task: In advance of your interview, we would like you to prepare a matchbox of maximum dimensions 12 cm x 6.5 cm x 2.5 cm. Please demonstrate your manual dexterity by personalising your matchbox and place five things inside that you would bring with you to the University if you were to join us in the autumn. Be prepared to discuss the relevance of these items and your personalisation choices with your assessors at the interview. This will be your way of letting your assessors get to know you, therefore these items are not expected to be dental-related. If for any reason you are attending this interview at a location other than your home (eg to access reliable Wi-Fi), please do not put any items of value (monetary or sentimental) in the matchbox, in case these are lost or damaged.

  • 'Tell me How' task: One of your interview questions will ask you to give instructions on how to do a task of your choice. You can prepare this answer in advance. The task needs to be something simple that you can explain verbally within five minutes, without any props. When giving your instructions, please assume that the assessors have little or no knowledge of how to do your chosen task (for example, how to do the laundry, how to make a sandwich or other simple food dish, etc). As the task is your own choice, you should not discuss this with other interview candidates (to avoid overlap of answers). You may practice with family members if you wish. 

What to wear

Wear something smart, but comfortable. Please avoid patterned clothes as these can make visibility difficult on screen. 

Bringing ID

You must present photo ID at the start of your interview. We will just need to see it when you join the interview to verify that you are the candidate we have invited. If you do not have photo ID, you will not be allowed to take part in the interview. 

Examples of suitable photo ID include (but are not limited to):

  • Passport
  • Driving licence or provisional driving licence
  • College photo card
  • NUS photo card. 

On the day

Ensure you have all the items required for your two prepared tasks and your photo ID ready when you set yourself up for your interview. 

Please set up your computer in plenty of time and join the Zoom link at least five minutes before your interview start time. One of your assessors will admit you when they are ready to begin. 

The interview will start with some internet connection and sound checks, followed by your ID check. 

Please make sure you have set up in a quiet room, and have informed anyone you live with not to disturb you during the interview. This includes anyone using streaming services or other activities that could impede your internet connection. 

Once the interview has finished, the assessors will let you know, and the call will be ended promptly. No feedback will be given at this stage. 

If there are any problems with the connection during the interview, you will not be penalised. We will make every effort to get back in contact with you to continue the interview. If we cannot overcome these problems at the time, the interview may need to be rescheduled to a later date. 

Confidentiality

Your online interview will be subject to similar expectations regarding confidentiality as a face-to-face interview. You should not:

  • discuss questions you were asked or scenarios in your interview with others, either online or in person, following your interview
  • use any smartphone, electronic device or book during your interview
  • record your interview in any way, other than making written notes to assist you in your answers.

We do not give permission for any part of your interview to be electronically recorded and undertake to make no such recording ourselves. We will hold no record of your interview performance other than assessors' score sheets.

Remember that integrity is an important aspect of good dental practice: we would view any failure to respond to the guidance in this section as an issue of fitness to practice which could jeopardise any offer you are made.

After the interview

We aim to contact you with the outcome of your interview within three weeks. In some cases, this decision may take a little longer. We will endeavour to update you as soon as we can via email. 

Please note that while you will likely hear from us within this time period, it is unlikely we will offer you a place on the course until after all of our interviews are completed, therefore you may be placed on hold for several months before you hear our final decision. Please be reassured that we will get in touch with you with a decision as soon as we can; this process simply makes sure all applicants are considered fairly. 

Support for a disability

This course is academically and physically demanding. If you have a disability, we trust you to have taken it into consideration before you applied and that you firmly believe you will be able to perform all the tasks and responsibilities the course requires.

For advice on studying with a disability contact our Disability Services team on +44 (0)117 331 0444 or disability-services@bristol.ac.uk.

If you have a disability that will prevent you from undertaking on online interview, or any difficulties engaging with an interview in this format, please contact us at visit-us@bristol.ac.uk to let us know. We will review your circumstances with appropriate colleagues at the University to advise whether any reasonable adjustments may be available to you.

Edit this page