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Interview technique

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
OK, I have had no interviews thus far, but UCL just wrote to me and I'm due there on the 10th December. They're my first choice and I really must do well in this, so how do I make a good impression?

Should I wear a suit, or go smart-casual? I usually spike my hair, should I style it more conservatively?

Less superficially, is there anything I should avoid doing / saying at all costs?

Cheers!
Picc.
xxx

P.S.: If it's relevant, I'm being interviewed for 2 degree courses: Egyptology and Classical Art and Archaeology.

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    First off, congrats on being so wise in your choice ;)

    I wore my suit to my UCL interview, but as long as it's smartish, I think it will be ok, just as long as your comfortable enough so it doesn't distract you from what you have to talk about.

    Have you been to the UCL site and seen the Talkabout forum? You might find some good advice there.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hi, last year for my UCL interview I wore quite smart clothes but not a suit...just a jumper and a long cord skirt. I remember that there were some very mixed outfits there...some in suits and some in really casual clothes.
    They normally say it's better to be comfortable than worry too much about looking really smart.
    Good luck with the interview, hope it goes really well! :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I never really had a formal interview to get into any of my choices, the closest being manchester and liverpool who asked me if i had any questions for them and generally checked that i was human and didnt have 3 heads (not that that would probably have made much difference) and offered me bribes ;)

    But to those I just wore my usual stuff... They want you for your potential not how you look. I think i must have been slightly smarter than the "dragged in off the street" look, but not by much.
    If any of them had been more formal I would probably have dressed a bit smarter though. It cant hurt I guess.

    As for what to say, just read through your personal statement again and make sure you can talk about what you've written on it. eg at manchester they went to the website i ran for a band i used to play in and asked me how id enjoyed making it and how it came about that i did it in the first place.

    Good luck :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I went in baggy jeans and T-shirt, the interviews are normally easy and they just check if your personal statement is true. A think a suit is over the top as everyone is really casual, the students don't wear suits and the lectures don't either!

    Bopz
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Bopperz
    I went in baggy jeans and T-shirt, the interviews are normally easy and they just check if your personal statement is true. A think a suit is over the top as everyone is really casual, the students don't wear suits and the lectures don't either!

    Bopz

    And did you end up getting a place?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Indeed, i was accepted to 5 out of 6 unis, im drunk im my uni. Beer is kool, they had a beer festival, we drank beer :) Me lecturer wears a t-shirt and jeans so why hsouyld i dress up for an interview! BBBBBEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEERRRRRRRRR!

    Bopz :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    They usually say 'dress comfortably' but I think it's a good idea to be quite smart to show you've made an effort - don't need a suit though. Same applies to your hair, although you shouldn't be covering up what you're like, so if you normally spike your hair, just spike it. They don't discriminate hairily. Or whatever.

    And don't be nervous - be yourself, be keen and enthusiastic. Don't just answer their questions; go on and elaborate, try to strike up a proper conversation with them, and make it flow smoothly. Oh, and don't say you find something 'interesting.' Just like personal statements really. It's a very empty word, so instead explain what you like about your subjects.

    In my uni interview, I was asked about my A Level subjects, including the ones that were irrelevant to my course, and about my school life in general. They asked what I liked to do in my spare time. Then, of course, they asked why I'd chosen my course and what I thought I'd particularly enjoy, what I thought I'd be particularly good at. So basically there was nothing unexpected or really difficult. Not all interviews are the same, but I'm sure you'll be fine.

    Good luck :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by perfect***day
    you shouldn't be covering up what you're like, so if you normally spike your hair, just spike it. They don't discriminate hairily. Or whatever.

    :yes:

    i might not be the best idea to wear a t-shirt saying 'i kill babies' or something like that, but i would say it's more important to feel comfortable than to be smart. as long as you're clean and fairly tidy, you'll be fine.

    i turned up in jeans and hoodies for all my interviews, and i got my fair share of acceptances. then again i've always been in for very creative subjects, and maybe if you wanted to do a subject like business, there might be more emphasis on being smart.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Yere leave the abusive t-shirts at home for the interview! But feel free to wear them shopping in Tesco's!

    Bopz
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    hmm for my interview at ucl i went in smartish casual, and well im here now doing chemistry and quite happy
    they know you wont wear a suit there everyday, just go in what makes you feel comfortable and confident

    but if your looking to meet 'new people' at interview thayts another story... ;)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by LonDoNErcHriS85
    hmm for my interview at ucl i went in smartish casual, and well im here now doing chemistry and quite happy
    they know you wont wear a suit there everyday, just go in what makes you feel comfortable and confident

    but if your looking to meet 'new people' at interview thayts another story... ;)

    Ooh, are you in accomodation? I'm a Ramsay gal myself :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Generally sound advice all round I'd say, although the guidelines I've been told to peddle to potential Oxbridge candidates is to treat a university interview, where-ever it is, like a job interview - ie wear something fairly tidy, but not something that's going to make you uncomfortable if you have to wear it for a few hours.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by kaffrin
    it might not be the best idea to wear a t-shirt saying 'i kill babies'
    But, dammit, that's the one I wear with my suit! :p (What about "I don't even think straight"? My friend suggested it 'cos then I could claim discrimination if I don't get a place!! :D And, yes, I am joking!)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by go_away
    Ooh, are you in accomodation? I'm a Ramsay gal myself :)

    ah the creme de la creme of the wonderful bug and mice infested gower st, but leaving 8.55 says it all :D
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I'm already at home :p I couldn't handle another night of choosing between brown sludge and dark brown sludge for dinner. Or early morning fire alarms....
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    nice my dark brown sludge has developed into low level cooking ability now, shame it only stretches to spag bol and burettos, amongst some other food :P

    back to the topic however just show your not a complete layabout and wiling to make a little effort to impress them, whilst showing you aint a complete pretentious twat, well not for medics :P (sorry anti medic joke been at uni too long)
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