Examples of interview questions
Education and leisure
- What interests you most about your course?
- Describe how you typically approach a project
- If you could change your course in any way, what would you change?
- How would your tutor describe your work?
- What are your leisure time activities? What do you get out of them?
Skills, attributes and potential
- If we asked for a reference what would it say about you?
- How would a friend describe you?
- What is your major achievement?
- How do you manage your day?
- What do you consider yourself good at doing?
- What are your weaknesses?
- Describe a difficult situation and what you did about it
- How well do you work in a team?
- This position has a large amount of stress/negotiation/teamwork/isolation/travel. How will you cope with this?
- How do you respond to stress? Can you provide a recent example?
- What would you look for in a manager?
- How do you/would you get the best out of people?
The STARS technique is a great way to structure your answers for these kinds of questions.
Situation - Briefly set the scene (i.e. where and when)
Task - What was the aim, and what was your role?
Action - What did YOU do and how did YOU contribute? (this should form the majority of your answer - around 70%)
Result - What results were achieved? What outcome was reached?
Self-reflection - For a really good answer, you should add any reflection and what you learnt from this situation - with hindsight, would you approach the task differently?
- Why have you applied for this job?
- What makes you suitable for this role?
- What makes you think you can be successful with us?
- What do you think you can bring to this position/company?
- For each question it is well worth writing out your answer rather than just thinking it through.
- Bear in mind that we use different areas of the brain for thinking and talking so practise your answers by talking out loud.
- If possible use a recorder to assess your performance.
- Why not get a friend to ask you the questions so that you are simulating an interview?
- Keep practising until your answers are fluent, although you should not learn them parrot-fashion.