Background: Studies of the virtual interview format are needed to inform medical residency program leaders as they plan for future virtual interview seasons. Objective: In the current study, completed in 2021, we sought to assess applicant perspectives of virtual interview effectiveness, advantages, and barriers, including factors that might impact equity and inclusion. Methods: Interviewees applying to 7 residency programs and 2 clinical psychology programs at an academic medical center in the Pacific Northwest completed a post-interview survey. Results: A total of 565 of 1429 interviewees (40%) completed the survey. A vast majority (83%-96%) agreed virtual interviews were effective in each measured domain, except for learning institutional culture (352 of 565, 62%). Many also found information regarding social/living environments inadequate. Participants selected advantages to virtual interviews more frequently than disadvantages. Commonly selected advantages included cost savings, time efficiency, reduced burden of travel, and reduced carbon footprint. Disadvantages included time zone differences, access to an appropriate interview setting, and reliable access to internet. The majority of interviewees (84%, 456 of 542) desired to keep a component of virtual interviews in the future. There were no significant disparities in results based on gender, rural/suburban/urban location, race, or underrepresented minority status. Conclusions: Virtual interviews were perceived as effective, more advantageous than burdensome, and widely acceptable, with no disparities in these findings by included demographic characteristics.
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