Presentation on theme: "Interviewing Skills for K-12 Educators. Prior to Your Interview Please consider the following tips in preparation for your interview(s): Interview Pointers."— Presentation transcript:
Interviewing Skills for K-12 Educators
Prior to Your Interview Please consider the following tips in preparation for your interview(s): Interview Pointers
Interview Question Types Traditional: focused on general information. Examples: -Tell us about yourself? -Tell us about your student teaching experience? -What are your strengths? What are your weaknesses? Behavioral: are based on the premise that your past behavior predicts your future performance. Examples: -Describe an example when you had a conflict with someone in an academic setting? How did you handle it? -Tell me about a time when you faced a difficult situation, how you resolved it, and what you learned about yourself during the process. *SEE NEXT SLIDE FOR HOW TO BETTER ANSWER BEHAVIORAL QUESTIONS* Industry/Teaching Specific: are focused on specific concepts related to the field. Examples: -What four words would students use to describe your teaching style? -If you were to give an assignment that your students ridiculed for not making sense, what would you do?
Answering Behavioral Questions “STARS” Method: “T” (Task) What specific question, problem or challenge were you facing at the moment? “A” (Actions) What steps did you take to do a good job? What style did you use? What policies/procedures/theories, principles did you apply? This should be the longest part of the answer. “R” (Results) What happened because you did a good job? What positive impact did your actions have? What problem was avoided? Qualify and quantify your results whenever possible. “S”(Success) If you follow these steps you will tell a successful example. “S” (Situation) Where were you when this happened? (e.g. Working at The Bay or in a chemistry lab). When did it happen? (e.g. Last summer) S+T+A+R + S Example: Tell me about a time when you dealt with a difficult parent. How did you handle it? S: When I was a Teacher’s Aid while in college last year, a parent called upset about one of the school policies. T: As the only person in the classroom at the time, I knew it was my job to assist her the best I could. A: I told her that I could hear she was very upset and that I wanted to do what I could, so I was glad that she called. I knew it was important to stay calm, speak softly, and to let her know I was listening. I suggested that because it was a school policy, that I would transfer her directly to the principal. She agreed and when I transferred her, she seemed less agitated. R: The next day the principal saw me in the hall and thanked me for transferring the parent directly to him as he was able to explain why that certain policy was in place and the parent was appreciative of the explanation.
Prepare for These Questions: Tell me about yourself. This innocent sounding question is one of the hardest interview questions to answer. This is also one of the best questions to be asked. At no other time will you be given so much latitude to answer a question. You want to be sure to capture the interviewer's attention with a clear, quick, and focused response. This response ("two-minute pitch" or "elevator speech") should give a summary of your background, focusing on why you are a good fit for this position in this organization. Please keep in mind that the employer is not interested in learning about your entire personal history. Before the interview, prepare an answer to this question. Write out your relevant or professional qualifications using the past, present, and future approach. Choose four to five highlights of which you are most proud (past and present). Be sure to back these qualifications up with examples, generally from your résumé. Then, explain how you believe you can help this employer. What is your greatest weakness? Be cautious when answering this question. This is not an opportunity to confess a major flaw about your personality that would disqualify you from further consideration. Prepare an answer that demonstrates your self awareness. In your answer ALWAYS include ways that you are trying to improve upon this weakness. In addition, anticipate several follow-up questions related to your weakness. Avoid weaknesses such as 'I work too hard,' or 'I am a perfectionist' which have become clichéd. Why should I hire you? In your answer focus on what makes you unique and what you offer to an employer. Do not attempt to compare yourself with other applicants. Explain the combinations of skills and experiences you offer and why these will be valuable to this school.
Illegal Interview Questions: Whether you are applying at a school, or any other position, the following are questions that U.S. employers cannot legally ask during an interview: How old are you? What are your religious beliefs? What is your ethnic background? What is your native language? Are you single, married, or divorced? Do you have any children? Are you planning on getting pregnant anytime soon? Do you have any disabilities? What is your sexual orientation? Are your parents U.S. citizens?
Questions YOU Can Ask During an Interview: Almost every interview you have will end with the interviewer asking, “Do you have any questions for me/us?” Your answer should always be “Yes” and you should have already prepared some quality questions: I noticed on your website that you use the DIBELS assessment; however, it did not specify what grade levels. Does the entire K-6 curriculum include this component? Are there opportunities to advise extracurricular activities, student clubs, sports or organizations? What are the biggest challenges you would say you face in your school? What opportunities for professional development are there? What is the testing schedule like? How often are faculty meetings held? What are your expectations for teachers in this school? It is NOT appropriate to discuss benefits (salary, retirement, vacation time, etc.) during this part of the interview. It is appropriate to ask, “What is the timeline for this opening, and next steps?”
Additional Interview Considerations Be sure to shake hands confidently and thank the interviewer for their time. SMILE, even if you are nervous! This makes a huge difference during the interview. Try to relax and have a positive attitude; avoid negative body language (slouching, crossing arms, etc.). Show your interest, enthusiasm, and confidence during the interview. When answering questions, think first, answer second, and ask for clarification if needed. If you say something negative, always follow it up with a positive. Answer honestly, never lie or stretch the truth. It is important to send a thank you note within a short time after your interview. An is okay, but a hand written note is a more personal approach.
During and After the Interview Contact Western’s Career Services to schedule a Mock Interview (in-person, over the phone, or using Skype) Taylor Hall 302A ● western.edu/career ●