Remember the moment when you received that interview request you had been waiting for with bated breath? There must have been only a couple of other moments that can match the elation you must have felt at that moment.
Naturally what followed was a combination of apprehension and dread. Interviews are usually the make-or-break moment for most of the applicants. The last thing you want to do is stumble or stutter through jumbled responses.
While the questions you are asked during the interview are extremely important, the questions you ask at the end of the interview are just as important. Your questions serve as an indication of your interest and demonstrate motivation for the path that lies ahead of you. There have also been instances where not asking questions is assumed to be disinterest in the programme by the interviewer.
While you need to be prepared for anything when it comes to the questions being asked to you, you need to stay focused when it comes to your questions. Like everything else, you need to prepare carefully.
What NOT to ask during your admissions interview
To start off, there are several questions you need to avoid. These can range from intimate to ambiguous. Asking pointless questions could lead to unwanted results:
If the answer to your question can be found on the institution’s website or brochure, then there was no point in asking the question. Interviewers will grasp your interest when they realise that you want to dig deep and your questions should be an indication of that.
You can ask the interviewer about their opinions and beliefs as long as it’s restricted to the institution. But crossing any kind of personal line is a strict no-no. Also, asking about your chances of getting through can sometimes lead to losing the chance you previously had.
If your plan is to pursue some kind of specialization, there’s no point in asking questions unrelated to it. Irrelevant questions can sometimes be misconstrued as a lack of focus.
The interview questions you SHOULD be asking
The first thing you need to remember is that it’s an interview, not a test. You have been called for it because the college likes you and is looking for reasons to accept you. All the interviewer and the admission team want to see is that you are as focused and motivated as they think you are.
Hence, the first part of your interview is all about justifying that you’re honest and all the information that you have provided truly represents who you are. The purpose of your questions must be to prove to your interviewer that you have made up your mind to be a part of the programme they are offering. Here’s what you need to ask to demonstrate just that:
Don’t hesitate to ask what the interviewer what he/she thinks are the greatest advantages of the college. If the time permits, try and ask what the disadvantages are too. You might be taken seriously as a future leader if you can initiate a discussion about what role future students can play to transform the current challenges into strengths.
Be open to advice
The person at the other end of the interview is a part of the institution you are trying your best to get into. Therefore, it’s a good idea to ask for advice on making the most of the stint at the college since they are in a position to offer helpful advice. This question not only helps you to prepare for something you probably had not thought of, but also offers the chance for both of you to bond.
Life on campus
When your questions revolve around the institution’s infrastructure, facilities or activities, it makes the interviewer think that you have started picturing yourself on campus and are trying to be actively engaged in life there.
And last, but not the least, don’t forget to check on who will be the best person to speak to in the future if you have any additional questions. Never forget for one moment that you have a limited time to impress and achieve your goal of admission. So, be sure to keep your questions focused and relevant.
So what are you waiting for? Get practicing in front of that mirror.