Teaching candidates will hear interview questions that are common to most jobs. You will also hear more technical questions about your job qualifications, experience and interests. Questions vary based on the age level of the position for which you are interviewing. However, some questions are common to teachers at any age level.
In its list of "sample interview questions for teaching candidates," Virginia Tech's Career Services department says you can expect to be asked, "Why did you decide to become a teacher?" This, or a question like it, is likely, as the interviewer wants to understand if you are passionate about teaching. Teaching is a profession in which professionals must have a genuine interest in young people and a passion for education.
Teaching interviews are usually with a school district employer. The employer might ask why you want to work for the school district. Global career management professional Carole Davies says in her "Teacher Interview Questions and Answers" article on Resumes for Teachers that effective research on the district is the only way to succeed in responding to this question. She advises that the interviewer wants to know that you are truly interested in the school district and position and are not just sending out applications for every job available.
School classrooms require discipline for an effective learning environment. Discipline strategies and tactics vary by age group. The Job Employment Guide's "Teacher Interview Questions" list includes an entire section of potential questions on your classroom management and discipline methods. "Describe your philosophy regarding discipline" is one example of a teaching interview request. A good answer shows your clear plan, along with an explanation of how your discipline philosophy aligns with the school district's thinking on discipline.
Davies offers the question, "How would you describe a successful principal?" as another example of a common teacher interview question. She says the hiring committee wants to understand what you think makes a good leader in a school environment. More importantly, they want to identify any major conflicts that could arise between you and the existing principal. In your interview research, try to learn about the principal and her values. If you respect what you learn, convey your support for those values in response to this question.
Neil Kokemuller has been an active business, finance and education writer and content media website developer since 2007. He has been a college marketing professor since 2004. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University.