How To Deal With Not Co-Operating Team Member Interview Question Passing a TEFL-ESL-TESOL Job Interview and Landing That Dream Job Abroad

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Passing a TEFL-ESL-TESOL Job Interview and Landing That Dream Job Abroad

The TEFL / ESL / TESOL job interview is very important for several reasons. You need to prove yourself competent and competent in a highly competitive market, you need to know what kind of establishment your potential employer is, whether you can negotiate the salary and other conditions, and for many reasons. As we have learned in this article, careful planning and a smart and charismatic approach to the day will do the trick. Now imagine that you are applying for a job at a private language institute and are invited to attend an interview like any other job. So begins the preparation phase until the TEFL / ESL / TSEOL job interview. Getting your appearance, interview answers and interview questions right, through careful preparation, will put you ahead of the competition. This is the time when you should invest your time in doing your homework. But what do you need to know?

English teaching jobs abroad by their very nature represent challenges for companies when trying to recruit teachers. The challenges of long distance are reflected in various job interview formats, which you should familiarize yourself with before attending. Let’s identify the three main types of interviews and their unique characteristics. First, there is the standard face-to-face interview, which is similar to any other type of employment. Such interviews can be done in your home country and are very common if you are looking for teaching jobs in the country where you want to teach. Most of the advice in this article is primarily concerned with passing on this format.

Second, is the group interview. In this format, a group of usually five to twenty people is invited to attend, usually for a few hours, an interview and a seminar. This format can be challenging because it becomes more obvious that you are competing with other candidates. Also, you will likely be asked to participate in some teaching-related or collaborative work. The main thing to keep in mind in such tasks is how you conduct yourself with your fellow interviewees, rather than how well or quickly you can complete the tasks. Show yourself to be helpful, communicative and honest – all essential qualities in the classroom.

Third, if you are applying for a teaching job abroad from your home country, be prepared to do a phone interview. Phone interviews are rarely popular with candidates, or interviewers are weird. Lack of face-to-face reassurance leads to insecurity in people and this can result in a generally poor performance. Other complications such as time zone differences and potential phone time delays also make this format more inconvenient. In response to these difficulties, answer the interviewer’s ice-breakers, create yourself to create an atmosphere of ease, and remain calm throughout.

Suppose you are now attending an interview format; a basic face-to-face meeting with the OS / ADOS of the school where you want to work. Don’t forget the cultural differences when thinking about what to wear when you attend the interview. Once you’re in the country you want to teach, you’ll quickly learn the social norms. However, if you are attending an interview for a job abroad in your home country, do your research. One of the most amazing interviews I attended involved a large Japanese company recruiting in the United Kingdom. When the group interview arrived in London, all male candidates not wearing a suit and tie were politely asked to leave. Female candidates who do not dress to the same level of formality are also cut. On this occasion, like others when I’m not sure about the fit, it’s always too formal rather than too casual.

You will inevitably be asked questions related to English grammar, but if this is your first job or you have less than two years of experience, take some time before the interview to analyze the your grammar. As the TEFL / ESL / TESOL market is flooded with many candidates and qualifications such as CELTA / Trinity TESOL have become the norm, not the exception, it is important that you do not embarrass yourself in the interview by stumbling over elementary issues that language. In any way you need to know all the intricacies of English, but basic knowledge of the language is important; how can you teach something you don’t know yourself? As a guide, refer to a Pre-Intermediate level course book; the interviewer will not ask advanced language questions, so don’t worry. From my experience, prepare yourself to explain the difference between the past simple (I went) and the present perfect (I am), the rules of comparison or superlative adjectives (high, the highest) , what are modal verbs (must, can) and what are gerunds (swimming, being late) and so on.

The job interview is now a few days away and it is important that you prepare your ideas for the various open questions that the interviewer will ask you. TEFL/ESL/TESOL job interviews are, in my opinion, easier than other interviews to pass in this regard, because there are only limited questions you should expect to be asked. It is suggested to prepare ideas, not fully scripted answers to the following (question advice in brackets):

  • Why do you want to work for us? (Impress them with your knowledge of the company).
  • Why did you become an English teacher? (Talk about your love of teaching and learning; not traveling – your employer doesn’t want to think you’re going to up and leave via your contract!)
  • What work experience (in TEFL/ESL/TESOL) do you have? (If this is your first job, explain how your previous work experience relates to teaching and learning).
  • What were the challenges/difficulties you faced in CELTA/Trinity TESOL/ your last teaching job? (Make sure you spin it so you can see that you are reflecting on your teaching practice and growing as a teacher).
  • What English course books do you teach/ What do you think of it? (Identify a book you like and tell how it helped your students learn)
  • How long do you want to work for us / at TEFL / ESL / TESOL? (It is recommended not to refer to teaching English as a stop gap or just an excuse to get out of your home country. Give the impression that you are in it for the medium to long haul).

Of course, there are many other questions that can be asked – the above should only serve as a guide. Remember to always try and put a positive spin on any teaching practice or experience you’ve had. Never show anger towards a former employer or former co-worker and never speak ill of a society in which you live.

Interviewers like DOSs and ADOSs don’t expect the interview process to be a one-way street so neither should you. In fact, I think TEFL / ESL / TESOL job interviews involve as much assessment of the school as the school does of you. Unfortunately, experience teaching and working within TEFL / ESL / TESOL will best capture the questions and issues you want to address. If you have never worked teaching English, just try and think about what will most affect your daily working life. Here are some important things to know about:

  • Do I have to work split shifts? (not really popular with teachers)
  • Do I have to travel from class to class? (rarely paid)
  • How will the school support me If I teach children? (the best schools work closely with parents and teachers – the worst, not at all)
  • How is a student’s level determined? (hopefully, through a comprehensive test administered by a native speaker)
  • What are the methods of covering and overtime? (how quickly can you get help if you are sick and can you get more time if you want?)
  • What materials (books, stationery etc)/resources (photocopier, printer etc) did you get?
  • What are the opportunities for promotion/salary increase? (fair to ask)
  • What are the opportunities for professional development? (can the company help you become a better teacher?)

Obviously, there are many issues you can raise in the interview, but try not to turn the meeting into your school interview! Hopefully, the interviewer should allay your fears and provide answers that demonstrate that the school has a commitment to academic quality, job satisfaction among teachers, and management ability. Alarm bells should ring if the interviewer avoids the above issues or gives poor answers.

If you’re impressed with the interviewer, and you’re impressed with the interviewer’s answers to your questions, it’s time to think about accepting. You may have gone to several interviews at the same time and wondered which one to accept. I would recommend carefully weighing the pros and cons of each job and remember that it’s not always salary that affects job satisfaction. $50 a month is worth more to a poorly run school that puts money first over student/teacher well-being. The interviewer may ask for your acceptance of the day. If that’s the case, it doesn’t make sense to ask for a day or two to think about it – you’re committing yourself to a year or more abroad and the interviewer needs to understand that.

In conclusion, with thorough preparation, formal attire, and a charismatic performance on the day, you should be able to easily land your dream job in TEFL/ESL/TESOL. Schools are always looking for teachers and there are always many jobs to choose from. Use the interview as an opportunity to confront the employer. Talk to other teachers and tour the area. On a final note, learn from every TEFL/ESL.TESOL job interview – write down what went well and what you can improve on so you can up your game next time. Good luck!

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