Your CV

A CV, which stands for Curriculum Vitae (might be refered to as a résumé) is used to outline a person's educational and professional history for job applications. It's essential that your CV is well presented and professional, here is a link to a CV template to help you construct yours, alternatively ask Mrs Harrison in the Careers Department for advice. 

 

College interview hints and tips

First impressions last

Greet your interviewer with a smile and a firm handshake.  Always give eye contact.

Be Prepared

Take your reports with you to an interview.  Additional information such as an art and design portfolio will also support your application process for relevant courses.  Find out information about the college and courses from their website beforehand. 

Be Confident

Listen carefully to the questions and answer the questions fully and properly.  Don’t waffle- take your time to gather your thoughts.  It is better to say you need a minute to think about your answer rather than speak instantly and regret it afterwards.

Why should you be on the course?

All interviewers are looking for the right person for the right course.  Be prepared to talk about your knowledge, experience, abilities and skills in the subject area.  Be enthusiastic about the course!

Be Positive

Your interviewer will be thinking about what it would be like to have you on their course, so they won’t want to hear negative comments or lack of enthusiasm.  Interviewers like to see someone who enjoys a challenge and is enthusiastic.

Body Language

It is not what you say but how you say it.  During the interview don’t slouch, lean back, fold your arms or look down.  Sit upright, make eye contact, use your hands and lean forward when making a point.

Develop rapport

Show energy, a sense of humour, and a smile!

Check anything you are unsure about

If you are not certain what is meant by a particular question, ask for clarification.

Remember your “manners”- be polite at the interview: this will be noted and remembered.  “Please” and “Thank you”.

 

Questions you may be asked at an interview

What are your predicted grades?

Take your predicted grades, expected grade, mock exam results or already achieved grades to your interview.  The interviewer will wish to see if you meet the entry requirements for the course you are applying for.

Why do you want to do this course?

Interviewers use this question to see if you have done your homework and thought about your future.  Do you really want to do this course?

What are your strengths?

This is your chance to say what makes you stand out from the next person.

What work experience have you done?

You may have a part time job ordo  volunteering work.  You may also have completed some work experience during holidays.  You may discuss areas of your experience that you enjoyed and how much you learned.  This will demonstrate to the interviewer that you have a good work ethic.

Describe a problem you have faced and how you solved it.

This is a tough question that is common in interviews.  Interviewers are looking for your critical thinking skills and to determine if you can formulate solutions.

Tell me about yourself

The interviewer is trying to figure you out professionally.  Pick a couple of points about yourself, in relation to what you want to do in the future.  The interviewer will not wish to know what games console you use and that you hang around with your mates.

 

Questions you may wish to ask the interviewer

What enrichment courses are available?

(E.g. volunteering, DofE, EPQ, first aid)

This tells the interviewer that you are interested in extra courses/classes within the college and would like the opportunity to explore different activities.

What is the dress code?

Different colleges and training providers will have different views on appropriate dress wear.  Different colleges may require overalls or uniforms for example motor vehicle engineering, hairdressing, catering.

What can this course lead to?

It is important to know what options are available to you after the course, so you may know your progression route to reach your careers goal.

May I contact you if I have further questions?

It is always good to end an interview with this question.  It keeps the door op