St Paul’s Catholic School Latest News

Focusing On Interview Success

Sixth Form Focus Group

Sixth Form students are helping to pass on their knowledge and experience to future students through their participation in focus groups exploring the university interview process.

At St Paul’s, Sixth Form students undergo a mock interview to help them prepare for real life interviews at their chosen universities.  The school matches them up with interviewers who have experience that is relevant to the courses they are applying for. 

The focus groups were held to find out what students thought about the mock interview process and how it compared to their real university interviews.  Students also had the opportunity to discuss the different styles of university interviews they had encountered such as one to ones, carousels/’speed dating’ and group discussions.

Emma Exelby, UCAS Co-ordinator at St Paul’s Catholic School, said:  “We’re very grateful to our students for attending the focus groups and providing such invaluable feedback on their experiences.  It will help us to further refine the work we do to help our students prepare for university and ensure that they present themselves confidently and have the appropriate knowledge for a successful interview.”

Speaking about his recent experience, Year 13 student Ben, said:  “Pretty much every question I was asked in my mock interview came up in the real one.  When I didn’t know how to answer a question in the mock I then had time to go away and do some research.”

Some of the tips students passed on during the focus groups included:

  • Make sure you prepare thoroughly
  • Think about how you present yourself and your body language
  • Do research on the course you have applied for
  • People expect their interviews to be really scary and daunting but it isn’t always like that. Think of it as if you were doing a presentation in front of your class

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