College can be so much fun, but the admission process has nervousness and fear written all over it: college interviews. One person or a panel of interviewers will decide if you are getting admitted to a particular course in the college. It may sound scary but you have to prepare yourself for what comes and here are some tips for you to ace your college interviews:
1. An attire to impress: This is one of the most important aspects of the interview. The first impression may not last for a long time but it creates an opinion about the candidate in the interviewer’s head. The first thing they see is the way you dress and how you choose to tie your hair. Ensure that your hair, dress and shoes give a professional and studious vibe. Log in to the university website and try to follow the official dress code that the institution prescribes. In case there is none, the go-to option is:
· A formal shirt (preferably off-white)
· Formal black pants
· Black/brown formal shoes.
2. Greetings and gratitude: Entry and exit of the candidate need to be professional and elegant. Always greet the interviewers with ‘Good morning’, ‘Good Afternoon’ or ‘Good evening’. If there is one person, greet with ‘Ma’am’ or ‘Sir’. If there are two or more people, greet with ‘Professors’, ‘Sirs’ or ‘Madams’ (depends on the gender). Introduce yourself by saying 'I am [Your name] with a smile. While leaving, make sure you say ‘Thank you’, bow your head slightly and walk out of the room politely.
3. Common interview questions: This is where the sweating and nervousness starts. The simple questions asked are often not met with good answers from the candidate because he/she is not prepared. Here are some common questions every interviewer asks and you will have to prepare the answers according to your course and future goals in life:
· Tell me something about yourself. (Hint: Name, Hometown, previous Internships you are currently doing, basic hobbies)
· Why do you want to take this course?
· Where do you see yourself in five/ten years? (Or) What do you want to be when you grow up?
· What are some of your hobbies? (Or) What do you do in your free time? (You do not have to make up random 'impressive' hobbies right there because the interviewers may have come across that trick)
4. Prepare questions for the interviewer: This is the bonus question but it is just as important. If you love the subject and want to take it up for your higher studies, you will have questions regarding the particular course. Make sure you do not shy away from this question. Look up the course online and ask one or two queries about the same.
5. Being honest about yourself: There is a high chance that the interviewer is going to pick a particular accomplishment from the candidate’s resume and ask about it. Make sure everything you say is honest to the best of your knowledge. This is not only going to save you from further complications but also give a sense of inner satisfaction.
6. Subject-specific questions: The interview will have questions related to your specific field or subject. This is important: Research any recent developments that have happened in your field of study and try to incorporate them in your answers. Interviewers tend to ask questions directly or indirectly connected to these current affairs. If you are not able to answer these questions, do not answer randomly or panic about it. Think of the question for some time, and gently tilt your head and say ‘I am sorry I am not aware of this answer/topic’. Every candidate cannot and answers to every question in the world, and that is okay.
Last but not least,
Always keep a smile on your face. Think of all the fun you will have in college with new friends and once-in-a-lifetime experiences. A smile will not only erase the fear of the interview off your face but also uplift the spirit of the interviewers who have most likely been doing the monotonous task of taking interviews for the entire day.
Best of luck for your college interviews and future studies!