35 Questions to Ask About Oncology (With Sample Answers)
Oncologists are very important when it comes to figuring out if someone has cancer and how to treat them. Preparing for and going through the interview process is an important step for oncologists who want to start working at a new medical facility. If you know what kinds of questions oncologists usually ask during interviews, you can prepare for your meeting, practise your answers, and feel more confident. This article goes over common oncology interview questions, such as general questions, questions about your experience and background, in-depth questions, and questions with sample answers to help you get ready for your own.35 Questions to Ask About Oncology
General questions about oncology for an interview
Here are some general questions that interviewers may ask to learn about your habits, interests, and values:
- How do you do what you do best?
- What are some of the worst things about you?
- What do you like to do in addition to your job?
- When you don’t have to work, what do you do?
- How would you explain how you do your job?
- What does your ideal work environment look like in your mind?
- What do you really like to do when you’re not at work?
- What have you read lately that made you think differently about something?
- Where do you see yourself in five years?
- How do you define success?
For an oncology job interview, you might be asked about your experience and background.
Here are some questions interviewers ask to find out about your education and work experience:
- Why did you choose the training programme you did, and what other programmes did you think about?
- How many different kinds of tumours have you dealt with?
- What is the most important thing you’ve done for yourself or your job?
- Tell us about a mistake you made at work and how you made it right.
- What class caused you the most trouble when you were in school? What did you do to overcome academic obstacles?
- Tell me about a work-related event that made you think differently about something.
- Tell us about a time when you saw something going wrong and did something to stop it.
- What steps did you take in your past jobs to protect your patients’ privacy?
- Which clinical population have you worked with the most, and which clinical population do you like working with the most?
- What is one thing about our building that you would change if we hired you?
In-depth questions about oncology for an interview
Here are some questions an interviewer might ask to find out more about your knowledge of the industry, your professional outlook, and how you would act in different situations:
- What do you think will happen to the business in the next ten years?
- What new medical oncology technologies are you most excited about?
- What do you think you’ll need to do radiation therapy?
- How many people do you think you can talk to in a day?
- How would you make sure that linear accelerators and software used to plan treatments are up to par?
- How would you tell a person who was in the fourth stage of cancer?
- How do you keep track of how a patient is doing while they are getting chemotherapy?
- What kind of information do you usually keep track of when a person with cancer is being treated?
- What are some ways you can tell worried family members about treatments and diagnoses?
- How would you feel if a patient refused an important treatment because they were worried about their safety for no good reason?
Examples of how to answer interview questions about cancer
Here are some common questions about oncology and sample answers to help you prepare for your own:
1. Why did you decide to go into cancer care?
This is a question a hiring manager might ask to find out what makes you passionate about oncology and what interests you about it. If they know why you want to study oncology, they may be able to learn more about your personal and professional interests and what keeps you interested in your work. Talk about how much you care about your job when you answer this question. Tell us how you got involved and why you chose oncology as a field of study. If it’s relevant, you can tell a short, personal story about how you got involved in cancer care or talk about your professional goals and inspirations.
Example: “I’ve always wanted to be a doctor, and when my sister was 24 and we found out she had cancer, it was the first step on my way to becoming an oncologist. During her treatment, it was hard for everyone in our family, but her care team made us feel like we had help. Meeting so many professionals who were both smart and caring made me want to help other people in the same way. We trusted the doctors’ knowledge because they always made us feel welcome, answered our questions, and took the time to explain how treatment worked.”
2. What do you think will be the most important problem in oncology in the next ten years?
Interviewers may ask you this question to see how well you know what’s going on in the field of oncology and what problems might come up in the future. By answering this question, you show that you know what problems the field may face and have the chance to talk about their causes and possible solutions. Explain one big problem and why it’s a problem in your answer. You can also talk about how to solve the problem and how you, as an expert in the field, can help. This shows that you know what you’re doing and want to make the field better.
Example: “I think the biggest problem for our industry in the next 10 years will be a lack of skilled workers. Because the U.S. population is getting older and not many people are going to medical school right now, there may be more people who need oncologists than there are oncologists who can help them. The lack of providers may put pressure on the current workforce, which could lead to more practitioners getting burned out and less effective care for patients. To stop this trend, I think we need to spend more money teaching oncology nurses, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants specialised ways to diagnose and treat cancer so they can help doctors.”
How do you keep up with new developments in oncology?
Hiring managers ask this question to see how committed you are to learning new things. To keep up with the latest research in their field, doctors and nurses have to do a lot of continuing education. How hard you try to learn more about your field shows how hard you work and how much you care about your job. To answer this question, tell us about professional groups you belong to or classes you’re taking right now.
Example: “As a professional with more than 10 years of experience in this field, I think that continuing to learn is an important part of my job. I am an oncologist who is certified by a board, and I take part in regular opportunities to learn and grow in my field. I belong to a few professional groups that give me access to research through their academic journals and events for professional development. Through these experiences, I learn about the latest research trends, new treatment options, and evidence-based findings, which helps me keep my practise up-to-date. Doctors need to keep learning for the rest of their lives.”
4. Tell me about a time when you had to help a patient who was hard to help. How did you handle the situation?
This is a question about your behaviour that an interviewer might ask to see how you handle problems with patients. When answering this question, you should think about how well you can understand patients with serious health problems and how well you can talk to them. Pick a time when you had to deal with a difficult patient. What happened and why did it happen? Then tell them what you did to put yourself in their shoes, feel sorry for them, and work with them to solve the problem.
Example: “I once worked with a patient who was very worried about whether or not X-rays were safe and healthy. She thought they made people sick and didn’t like it when I asked for an X-ray to look into a medical complaint. I had a short talk with her when she was alone. I asked her about her worries, listened to her answers, and then told her that I understood how she felt about her health worries. Then, I took the time to explain the research on how safe X-rays are so she could choose the right tests for herself. After we talked about it, she agreed to the X-ray.”
5. If a patient told you they were in a lot of pain, what could you do to help them deal with it?
This question helps the person in charge of hiring you learn about your clinical and social skills. By answering this question, you can explain how you work with patients to find the cause of their health problems. Tell us in your answer how you would evaluate a patient’s claims and find the source of pain. Then tell them what you will do next to ease the pain. You can also give details about what you know about what causes pain in oncology to show that you know a lot about the topic. When answering this question, you should emphasise that you can understand what a patient is worried about.
Example: “I always pay attention when a patient tells me they are in pain. Even though it’s common for cancer patients to feel pain during treatment, it’s important to help them and find effective ways to deal with it to improve their quality of life and treatment results. When a patient comes to me for help with pain, I give them my full attention and ask them questions to find out what might be causing it and how it affects their daily life. We make goals for management together, and based on those goals, I suggest what to do. Some patients like to take medicine to deal with their pain, while others would rather change the way they live.”