Here at Teachers For Asia, we work with hundreds of applicants who are looking to secure a teaching position. Whether you are new to teaching or an experienced teacher, we have compiled important communication advice to help you to create a good impression with prospective employers and ensure a smooth process from job interview through to starting in your new job. Our interview tips will help you to prepare well for the interview so that you secure that all-important job offer.
General Communication Dos and Don’ts
Communication is a key factor throughout your application – in order to secure a position but also to demonstrate strong communication skills to your potential employer(s) as this is a key skill required for teaching. Here are a few tips to bear in mind:
- Keep us informed of your preferences and status throughout your application and interview process. We can best advise and help you if we are up-to-date and clear on your requirements, developments with your application and any difficulties or issues which arise.
- Respond to e-mails from the recruiters/schools promptly – the hiring process tends to happen quickly once an interview is set up and delay in responding to emails to set up an interview or feedback following an interview can be taken as a lack of interest or enthusiasm on your part.
- Remember to be positive and polite in your emails to the school/recruiter – even if there is an issue to be raised, this can still be worded in a positive way so as to give them the ability to respond and address any issues without apportioning blame. Focus on the desired response/action item rather than just the issue itself. The language and tone of your emails go a long way to creating the right impression.
- Be decisive! When offered a position, be ready to make a decision within a few days (or sometimes quicker!) as there is a large demand for teaching positions and a school won’t wait around too long for you to deliberate.
Interview Advice – Above All, Be Prepared!
Interviews are all about preparation and Skype interviews are no different! Remember that as you are not interviewing in person but mostly via Skype (webcam) interview, coming across as enthusiastic and interested can be more difficult to convey, so you need to ensure that your eye contact and tone of voice convey this as they may only be able to see your face! We’ve summarized our key advice into bullet points below – use this as a check list before your interview to ensure you are ready to present yourself in the best possible light to your interviewer.
Top 10 Interview tips
- Be on time (you should be sitting ready waiting for them!)
- Ensure your webcam is working and microphone/volume is adjusted ahead of time
- If using a webcam, wear professional clothing (shirt/blouse) and ensure background is presentable and tidy
- Plan ahead (ensure you have quiet surroundings and no interruptions)
- Have your resume and reference letters printed out in front of you
- Be polite and courteous
- Speak with a clear accent and child-friendly language (depending on age-range of students)
- Prepare responses to likely questions (e.g. why you want to teach in Asia, how you would deal with basic classroom situations etc.)
- Do your research on the client and have at least 3 questions ready to ask them (e.g. about curriculum, location etc.)
- Convey your enthusiasm for the job and maintain good eye contact with your interviewers throughout the duration of the interview (this requires extra effort when you’re not in the room with them).
And one last interview tip – don’t forget to smile!