How to… Ace an Interview

Learning how to feel confident in an interview is one of the most important skills you can learn. Although it is perfectly natural to be nervous (no matter how much preparation you do!), being able to give well thought out answers to the interviewers questions will certainly aid you in being successful. Below is a list of potential interview questions, with suggestions on how they might be answered.

In addition to preparing answers to questions, it is vital that you arrive at your interview at least ten minutes early and are smartly dressed. You should have done plenty of research about the company or establishment you are interviewing with and should be able to demonstrate that you are familiar with the information that you have learnt about them.

  • Questions About You
    You should avoid saying “nothing” (or similar!) and make sure that they give more than one-word answers.
    Tell me about yourself…?
    – What are you most proud of?
    – What do you enjoy most about School?
    – What subjects do you enjoy the most / least? Why?
    – What are you doing to improve your weaker subjects?
    – What books have you read recently?
    – Where would you most like to travel to? Why?
    – Have you ever had to make a hard decision? How did you handle it?
    – What motivates you?
    – How would your friends / teachers describe you?
  • Questions About Your Experiences and Skills
    You should be honest – it is OK if they you had negative experiences, as long as you say what you learnt from it.
    Have you any particular hobbies or interests?
    – What do you do in your spare time?
    – Tell me about a situation where you have learned a great deal from recently?
    – Tell me about a time when you received negative feedback. How did you handle it?
    – What are your strengths and weaknesses?
    – Have you gained any work experience or done any voluntary work? How did you find it and what did you learn from it?
    – Do you prefer to work in a team or as an individual?
    – Can you cope under pressure? Give some examples
  • Questions About Your Future
    If you are undecided, you should still discuss which subjects or general career areas that you hope your future will revolve around.
    – What are your main aspirations?
    – Where do you see yourself in 5 / 10 / 15 years?
    – Have you got a particular career in mind? If so, why that career?
    – Are you considering University?
    – Do you have a back-up plan?
    – What do you think will be hardest about achieving your future goals?
    – What are you most looking forward to about your future?
  • Questions About Choices
    You should avoid saying “because it’s easy / close / my friends are there” – you should show that you have fully researched your choices! Why did you choose your particular GCSE options?
    -Why have you chosen to study these subjects?
    – What particularly attracted you to these subjects?
    – Why have you applied to this college?
    – Have you applied anywhere else?
    – What did you think to our Open Evening?