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Good Practice in Interviews The Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen – 22 April 2009 Leslie Currie, SPA Senior Project Officer.

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Presentation on theme: "Good Practice in Interviews The Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen – 22 April 2009 Leslie Currie, SPA Senior Project Officer."— Presentation transcript:

1 Good Practice in Interviews The Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen – 22 April 2009 Leslie Currie, SPA Senior Project Officer

2 The applicant experience A good applicant experience is a key precursor to a good student experience. The interview in terms of decision making is a key feature of the applicant experience. The whole applicant experience is the fair admissions system as identified by Schwartz It is outreach, schools and colleges liaison, widening participation activities, HE fairs, websites, applications process, and customer relationship management (CRM), and more, before the student starts at the HEI and support and monitoring, after the student starts at the HEI. It is all part of the Strategic Enrolment Management (SEM) process: from pre-entry to alumni.

3 Good Practice: Interviews - Background One of SPA's objectives is to encourage institutions to be proactive in the management of the interview process, to ensure applicants are interviewed fairly and without discrimination. review current admissions practices to improve the evidence base for good practice. Work with practitioners using existing networks to build consensus and identify and disseminate advice and guidance on what constitutes good practice Good Practice Statement: (December 2008)

4 Is it an interview – and what does that mean? If it is a formal interview are you clear why it is taking place (it takes a lot of your and your colleagues time)? Is the applicant (and are you) clear about the difference between a formal interview, which will directly affect the decision made on their application, and an informal chat about the course/mini open day? What are the implications of the applicant not attending the interview? Is the applicant clear about these?

5 Before the interview 1 Provision of clear information to applicants should include: How to prepare themselves Reading required? How should they dress? Date, time, duration, location of interview, details of where & who to report to Travel information, accommodation (reimbursement of expenses details if applicable), map Structure of the day Detail about the interview type (e.g. panel or 1:1) and content

6 Before the interview 2 Information about sample questions Details of any written work that will be sent to the applicant in advance Details of any written test, or presentation, that will form part of the interview Details of any facilities and/or equipment that will be available to applicants on the day Details of any documentation applicants should bring with them or send in advance Applicants should be made aware of the consequence of non-attendance

7 Conduct of the interview 1 Ideally to include: Minimum of two trained interviewers Mix/balance of interviewers (different genders, ethnic origins) Appropriate surroundings – a dedicated room Interruptions and disruptions – ensure there arent any Facilities/arrangements for those accompanying applicants

8 Conduct of the interview 2 Chairpersons responsibilities Interviewers demeanour and approach Identification & introduction – of interviewers and interviewee Interview structure and details to be outlined Keep to time - enough time for the interviewer/s to make notes/discuss each applicant fairly between interviews. Regular breaks for interviewers

9 Conduct of the interview 3 Interview questions – standard or differing? Paperwork available to interviewers – e.g. do they have the UCAS form, or is it anonymous? Recording and scoring – is a standard form and scoring system used? What are the specific criteria? Interview Report Form – how is the final score collated? Materials post interview – what happens to them? Outcome/post interview process – what are applicants told, and when? Is feedback offered?

10 Good practice and applicant focus Good practice involves being applicant focussed and having clarity and transparency to demonstrate to potential students and applicants: what courses an institution has to offer what is required for admission, progression into HE and success in the chosen programme that every application is valuable and will be treated professionally what support and facilities are available to applicants and new students Doing these well has huge benefits for all involved in the applicant experience

11 A point to remember A students experience of university does not begin at the moment they step onto campus at the beginning of October, and it does not end when they are shaking the hand of the Vice-Chancellor at graduation Group: Student Experience Policy Report (Nov. 2007) The student journey

12 Thank you – any questions or comments for SPA or to raise with colleagues here today? More information from: or

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