College Admissions Interview: How to Prepare
By Polina at University Language
Updated on Tuesday, March 5, 2013
Category: Applying to College
To ace the college admissions interview, you have to know what to expect.
The college admissions interview is not meant to be intimidating! Nor is it the definitive basis for determining admissions. It’s simply a way for colleges to see whether you’re a good fit for the institution – and vice versa.
Use this part of the college application process to your advantage. Here’s how to prepare:
Do Your Research
It’s important to know the basics when going on your college admissions interview. Scour the school’s brochures and website to learn as much about the institution as possible.
Knowing the school’s basic information also allows you to ask the right questions – you don’t want to ask the dean of admissions about their MBA program only to find out that they don’t have one.
During your college admissions interview, it’s important to show your interest in the school by asking specific questions (ones that can’t be answered by reading the school’s brochure!).
- How would you describe the student body?
- What are the most popular college majors (and why)?
- What are some of the best programs the school offers?
- Who are the institution’s noteworthy alumni?
The admissions officer will be impressed by your interest.
Review Your Application
The interviewer may use your application to strike up a conversation with you and ask basic questions such as:
- Why do you want to go to this college?
- What do you expect to gain from college?
- What do you plan to major in and why?
Review your application essay and the answers to these questions ahead of time so it’s fresh in your mind when you go on your college admissions interview.
Appearances are an important part of a first impression. For your college admissions interview, dress appropriately! Choose a more conservative outfit; wear minimal accessories, make-up, jewelry and perfume/cologne.
Though it may seem like common sense, it’s amazing how many students don’t follow this simple rule. Make sure you know exactly when and where your college admissions interview is being held — as well as how to get there!
You should plan to arrive about 15 minutes early. This extra time may come in handy, and arriving early will allow you to relax and prepare yourself mentally. Establishing good interviewing habits now will serve you well for the interviews that lie ahead in your professional life.
Remember, the college admissions interview is not an interrogation! It’s simply a part of your college preparation. It’s a conversation — one that should reveal things about you. To ace your college admissions interview, be positive, be honest and most importantly — be yourself!