Syracuse UniversityCareer Services

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PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT!

We've all heard this phrase whenever we've tried to master a new skill. While "perfect" may be hard to define when discussing interviewing, it is certainly imperative that you practice your interviewing skills. Career Services can help you improve your readiness by simulating an interview. The following questions and answers will explain this valuable service.
  1. What is a practice interview?

    A practice interview consists of three parts: a short discussion of scenario and expectations, an actual simulation of 20-30 minutes, and time for review and constructive suggestions.
  2. Why practice?

    Without a doubt you must feel confident and in control whenever you meet an employer representative, either in a short "screening" interview or a lengthier "selection" interview. Without the feedback that a practice interview features, how can an interviewing beginner know how to evaluate his/her performance and take corrective action? Certainly, there is the "learn by experience" pathway, but too often mistakes are repeated because the candidate is ignorant of what constitutes a mistake!
  3. Who should use this service?

    Any student or alumni who visit Career Services may schedule a practice interviewing. Anyone anticipating an interview for an internship, co-op, summer job, or permanent position should consider scheduling one.
  4. When can a practice interviews be scheduled? How long does it take? How can I schedule one?

    Practice interviews are available year-round and take about an hour. They may be scheduled by visiting Career Services or calling 443-3616 or online using OrangeLink (Myslice> Student Services>Career Services> OrangeLink>Schedule an Appointment).

    Do not wait until you have real interviews already scheduled to begin practicing, appointments often book quickly and may not align with the time frame during which your interview may occur.
  5. How should I prepare? What should I bring to the appointment?

    Attending a workshop, reading up on interviewing, viewing videos, and even discussing interviewing strategies and expectations can help you prepare. Once your practice interview is scheduled, email your resume and the job description to your scheduled advisor no later than 24 hours before the appointment. The more thought and preparation you invest, the more prepared you will be to treat the experience as "the real thing." This can include research of a real employer to simulate what should occur in advance of any interview.

    Dressing up is not required for a practice interview, but you may get more out of it if you play the part. Just like a real interview you’ll want to bring energy and positive attitude.
  6. How will I receive feedback?

    Your practice interview can be recorded or your advisor can take notes to use for feedback. Both are valuable. A recording of your practice interview reveals non-verbal elements of your interview that can be important in an employer's evaluation. Advisors may be able to email the file for review at home after suggestions have been offered for improvement.