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Advice for my first big interview!?!

 
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kclarke



Joined: 03 Jan 2014
Posts: 2
Location: Edmonton, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 8:45 pm    Post subject: Advice for my first big interview!?! Reply with quote

I have my first Skype interview next week for a job in Buenos Aires -- desperately want the job so hoping it goes well! I have a degree in Linguistics and my esl teaching certificate as well but so far have no "real world" work experience other than my internship in uni. Would love and appreciate any interview advice from experienced international teachers.

PS -- would like to point out I have travelled to BA before and read up a lot about what the life is like teaching there...I'm prepared for what I'm getting myself into haha Razz
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 3608
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 11:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Employers really appreciate candidates who show a high level of interest in the position and job, so prepare a written list of 4-5 basic questions or prompts to ask at the end of the interview. Your questions should mostly revolve around teaching and the students. For example:

    1. Describe a typical teaching day at X Language Academy.

    2. What types of learning activities do the students respond well to? Which ones are not as successful?

    3. What language learning challenges do the students have? Or... What are the students' language weaknesses? What are their strengths?

    4. Tell me more about the curriculum. Can teachers include their own learning activities and supplementary worksheets?

    5. Describe the classrooms---how they're set up and what teaching resources (e.g., white board, Smart Technology, overhead projector, desktop computer...) are in the rooms.

    6. What resources (e.g., library, wifi, supplies, etc.) are available to teachers and students?

    7. Do you provide mentoring for new teachers as well as opportunities for professional development? If so, please elaborate.

    8. Which of my skills do you see as being the most valuable to the students? (Usually asked by experienced teachers.)

    9. Tell me more about the job benefits. (Best to ask these types of questions during a second interview or after you've received an offer.)

    Close with:

    10. Do you have any additional questions about my qualifications? (Gives the interviewer the chance to throw in a last-minute question.)

    11. What is the next step in your selection process? Or... When will you be making a decision?


This list is just a sample. If you do an internet search on interview questions to ask, you'll find plenty of examples. Again, whatever questions you choose, don't ask more than 5---exclusive of numbers 10 & 11 in the above list. Also, do your homework by taking time to check out the school's website for info that you can mention during your interview. For example, "I saw on your website that X Language Academy provides tutoring for students..." By the way, if asking these questions turns into a dialog between you and the interviewer, that's a good thing. Wink

Good luck!
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kpjf



Joined: 18 Jan 2012
Posts: 145

PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2014 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To be honest this post almost 100% put me off ever working in Argentina:

http://forums.eslcafe.com/job/viewtopic.php?t=104855
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 3608
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2014 11:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The OP did say he/she has been to Buenos Aires before and thoroughly researched the reality of living and working there. So... But yes, it's always best to check out the country-specific forum on this site and from other Internet sources to get a clear picture of the living/working situation versus relying on a romantic or idealistic vision. And that goes for any country.
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psychedelicacy



Joined: 05 Oct 2013
Posts: 55
Location: Qatar

PostPosted: Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Prepare pre-fabricated answers to potential questions.

Typical questions:

    Describe a lesson you've taught/observed that you considered successful. Why was it successful?
    Likewise, describe a lesson you've taught/observed that you considered unsuccessful. Why was it unsuccessful?
    Describe an occasion when you taught or observed a particular item of grammar or lexis being introduced to learners for the first time.
    Describe how you would approach a receptive skills lesson.
    What is your approach to inaccuracy (error correction)?
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kpjf



Joined: 18 Jan 2012
Posts: 145

PostPosted: Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

nomad soul wrote:
The OP did say he/she has been to Buenos Aires before and thoroughly researched the reality of living and working there. So... But yes, it's always best to check out the country-specific forum on this site and from other Internet sources to get a clear picture of the living/working situation versus relying on a romantic or idealistic vision. And that goes for any country.


Oops, sorry. The "BA" instead of Buenos Aires must have got me!

However, I think there's a bit of a difference between "read up a lot about what the life is like teaching there" and "thoroughly researched the reality of living and working there" - we all know some people only read what they want to read, especially when they have their heart set on a certain country. I'm not saying the OP is doing this, just saying it happens, so it's worth reading the comment in the other thread in my opinion.
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kclarke



Joined: 03 Jan 2014
Posts: 2
Location: Edmonton, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Jan 17, 2014 6:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks to everyone that offered interview advice! It looks helpful and I look forward to putting those tips into action during my interview!

To those warning me against Buenos Aires....I've been to the city, I've done my research, I have friends that live there, and I have savings.....not going for the money. I do appreciate your concern though and I will report back on my experience when/if I make it back down there. Thanks. Smile
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