It’s the exciting yet terrifying time of the year when a lot of prospective students will be going for university interviews around the country. Although there is plenty of information and guidance about job interviews available, there isn’t quite as much about how to nail that important university interview. Here is my guide on how to rock your university interview to kickstart your future.
First impressions count
Although university is a very different experience to the workplace when it comes to interviews, you should model your outfit on what you would wear for your dream job. Make sure your clothes are comfortable, well-fitting and appropriate for the type of course you are applying to. For example, what you wear for an interview for a teaching course would be different to fashion or art. However, you want to look smarter than you would on a normal day in those jobs.
Although you won’t know exactly what is going to be asked of you, getting your family and friends to put you on the spot and ask you the sorts of questions that are typical for an interview will help you feel more prepared.
Let them see your application beforehand so that they can quiz you on certain aspects as they choose. Doing this will let you see where you need to think more about your answers. Alternatively, if a question you answer well comes up in the real interview, you will feel confident about what to say.
Read up on the interview
There are lots of people online who will be willing to discuss their experience of specific university interviews so you can get a feel of what to expect. This will help you feel more prepared and allow you to think about how you might answer certain questions or get ready for specific tasks. Remember to read and re-read the information that is sent to you from your chosen university about the interview to be sure that you know exactly what they are asking of you, and if there is anything in particular you need to take.
Research the course and your field
Although you have probably looked into the course when applying for it, now is the time to really delve deep. Think about what it is about the course that interests you, and what modules you are looking forward to studying as this is something that may be asked in the interview.The more knowledge you have about the university and the course, the better prepared you will be.
You will also need to have an up-to-date knowledge of at least some areas of your field. For example, if there have been any big new discoveries or developments, or perhaps even rules or policies that have come into play recently. Knowing about these will set you above other candidates and show that you are serious about this course.
Re-read your application
It might sound a little odd, but it is quite likely that you will be asked questions on things you have mentioned in your application. You probably wrote this some time ago, and so it is important to re-read what you have written to make sure you feel you can talk easily about what you mentioned. In some interviews, such as Oxbridge, you may wish to print off and take along any essays you have referenced in your application, and make sure you have re-read them to refresh yourself.
Make sure you sleep well the night before and take time to breathe before you go into your interview. As long as you are prepared, you will be able to give it your best shot — good luck! If you have any further top tips, let me know in the comments!