Congratulations on being invited to an interview with your prospective training provider.
It can be a bit of a daunting experience so we’ve compiled some information to calm those nerves and help you prepare.
Every provider will run their assessment differently. Some will assess you over an entire day, whereas others might assess you within one hour. Whatever the format of your assessment, here are some of the things you could expect:
- A group task to determine how well you interact with peers
- A written test
- Lesson observation and assessment of how well you interact with students
- A formal presentation
- A panel interview
It sounds obvious but one of the most important things you can do to prepare is research your prospective training provider. Read their most recent Ofsted report, find out their aims and objectives and try to find out which schools you might be placed within during training.
Read on for some more tips to give you the best chance of success.
1. Research current education policy.
It is likely you will be asked questions about this in your panel interview to assess your knowledge of, and interest in, education. We recommend you read up on the priorities in education, such as behaviour, safeguarding and special educational needs (SEN). You should also do your homework on the new curriculum changes and forthcoming SEN reform.
2. Prepare and practice your presentation.
You will be told in advance by the provider if you need to deliver a presentation at your interview. Presentation topics will vary, but as an example, you might be asked to deliver a presentation on how you would teach a specific physics topic to a year 9 class. To prepare for this you would need to demonstrate a good understanding of the curriculum currently being taught at year 9. You can use websites such as TES to help you with this. Always remember to practise your presentation out loud, too.
3. Dress to impress.
Some providers tell us they expect their interview candidates to wear a suit, complete with a jacket and a tie (for men). Looking smart not only gives a good impression to your prospective provider, it will also make you feel more confident.
4. Ask questions.
Arrive at your interview with some pre-prepared questions, or be prepared to ask questions when prompted. Providers will expect you to ask questions at the end of your interview because it shows that you are listening to them, genuinely interested in their course and enthusiastic about teacher training. If your pre-prepared questions are answered during the course of the day, tell the interviewer: “I had prepared a list of questions about which schools I might be placed in, but you answered them for me when we discussed the structure of the course”.
For further advice, take a look at some of the things not to say in an interview. Good luck!