How to ace a video interview

Published 6 April 2021
By Anna Shirley

A photograph of Sheffield SCITT communciations manager, Anna Shirley

While some teacher training providers may be returning to face-to-face interviews, others are continuing to ask that interviews take place by video call.

The Sheffield SCITT has done virtual interviews this year, and we have put together a guide on how to smash a video interview!

Logistics

  • Make sure you have access to the software that the interviewers will be using. At The Sheffield SCITT we are using Zoom, for example.
  • Test it out by making a video call to a friend to check your sound and speakers are working.
  • Consider the best place in your house to set up for the interview. You want a spot you where you won’t be interrupted, with good lighting. Avoid positioning yourself right in front of a window otherwise we’ll end up with a lovely view of outside, but not of your face!
  • Be mindful of your environment — remove anything from view that could potentially portray you in a negative way.
  • If you can, hide any small children or pets away so that they can’t make any unexpected guest appearances.

Presentation

Make sure you present yourself in a professional manner.

  • Dress as you would for a face-to-face interview, in smart attire.
  • Try to keep eye contact and look directly into the camera. This can be tricky via video, but it’ll really help your interviewers to engage with you.
  • Have a print-out of your application or a list of your key points nearby. You can use it as a platform to spark ideas and prompts to keep the interview flowing well.

Content

The points you should try to cover will be the same as in a face-to-face interview.

  • It’s essential that you use your interview to demonstrate your passion to become a teacher.
  • Clearly articulate the key reasons that you think you are suited to teaching.
  • Draw on examples from any experience you have working with children, and use this to form the basis of your answers.
  • If you are applying for secondary teaching, make sure you demonstrate a comprehensive knowledge of your subject area.
  • You will be expected to answer subject-specific questions, so make sure you are well-equipped to fire off answers confidently.
  • Be yourself and engage with the interviewer. And remember that your interview is a great opportunity for you to ask any questions that you have too.

Best of luck with your interview, and be assured that you are embarking on a truly rewarding, challenging and exciting career as a teacher.