In the final part of the ‘Types of’ 7 Plus preparation series, Meredith describes some of the different interview questions that could come up and offers some tips to prepare for them.
Interviews can feel like a stressful part of the admissions process. However, interview preparation (if you choose to do it) should be fun and allow students to shine. Answers should never be scripted as schools can easily spot this and it inhibits students’ natural spontaneity and personality, but it can help to have an idea of the types of questions that may be asked and some techniques to answer them. In general, students should get into the habit of expanding and explaining their answers as well as answering in full sentences. Below I outline some different types of questions that could come up, with examples and tips for answering.
These types of questions have become more popular in interviews lately as they offer a playful opportunity for the student to show they have an opinion and explain it. For these questions, it’s a good idea for students to get in the habit of answering in full sentences and giving a couple of reasons to explain their choice.
Would you rather be able to fly or be invisible? Why?
Would you rather read a book or do your homework? Why?
Would you rather walk or swim? Why?
These questions are of a more personal nature and should be relatively simple to answer, however, it helps students to practice expanding on their answers rather than giving a one-word answer.
Who’s in your family? Tell me about them.
What do you like to do in your free time? What are your hobbies?
What do you want to do when you are older? Why?
Practicing these types of questions can foster students’ descriptive skills and help them get into the habit of including adjectives and feelings in their answer.
Describe something you are proud of making/ creating/ writing.
Describe a time you helped a friend.
Describe your favourite object/toy. Why is it your favourite?
These questions will be related to a passage/ text the student is asked to read.
Tell me what you just read about in your own words.
Who were the characters in the story and where was the story set?
What was the problem in the story and how was it solved?
These questions are related to the student’s current school and potential in the interviewing school. Example questions:
If an alien came to your school and they could only study one subject, which subject would you recommend and why?
What is the point in going to school?
If there is one thing you would love to learn more about, what would it be and why?
What is your current school like?
More open-ended, these types of questions allow the interviewer to see the verbal and communication skills of the student/ how naturally chatty they are!
Tell me about a time you felt really disappointed/sad. What happened and what did you do?
Tell me about your school.
Tell me about your favourite place.
These questions give the interviewer an idea of the student’s world knowledge.
If you could meet anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
If you could solve one problem in the world, what would it be and why?
If you could visit any place in the world, where would it be and why?
Sometimes interviewers will ask students if they have any questions for them (either personal or about the school), so it’s useful for them to have a few prepared just in case!
Why did you decide to become a teacher?
What is your favourite subject?
Who is your favourite author?
What do you think is the best thing about this school?
Does your school have good sports / music facilities? (… as I love playing sport/ music).
Remember: Having the confidence and communication skills to say you’re not sure what the interviewer is asking, if they can repeat the question or that you simply don’t know the answer is far better than mumbling or guessing!
Enjoy some role-play practice with the above questions and shine on!
In this blog post, Meredith explains the different types of reading comprehension questions you can expect in the ‘comprehension’ part of an entrance exam, with examples and tips for answering each. This is a must-read if your child will be sitting the 7 Plus or 8 Plus entrance exam.
Meredith April, 2021