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Interview Order

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by naomi58, Jun 18, 2015.

  1. naomi58

    naomi58 New commenter

    How do panels decide the order in which to interview candidates? Is it telling whether you are first, or last, or somewhere in the middle?
  2. I usually do it in alphabetical order and, as an initial towards the end of the alphabet, am used to sitting around to be interviewed last.

    I can't see anything to be gained by "saving the best till last" or vice versa as this is often established before the interview day and who knows what could happen on the day.

    If there is a lunchtime/first day "cull" then panels may re-jig the order, but I can't see any advantage in ranking that order.

    Another thing I once did was, in the middle of winter, see the candidate who had a long journey home first so they could get on their way.
  3. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    Or have them in the middle so that they don't have to get up at some godforsaken hour to get there.

    But I certainly have NEVER made a pre-judgment on who was the best or worst to rig the order.

    No point. You could be wrong.

    There's many an outstanding application that turns out to be a no-go when they turn up. And t'other way round.

    Best wishes


    Meet Theo on line on the TES JobSeekers Forum, where she answers jobseeking and careers queries regularly each week.
  4. John_in_Luton

    John_in_Luton Occasional commenter

    Yes - my usual starting point is logistics of travel arrangements, and then logistics of the lesson observation (for example, if not all the candidates are being interviewed in the same year group, when I'm doing interviews in primary. It might be easier for the school to have the lesson in Y3 taught before the Y2 one, for example, according to the set-up of the school day, which then means we'll be interviewing the candidate who taught in Y3 first as well).

    The job of the application form is purely to get you through to interview - once you've reached that point, the playing field is level (until the selection process starts on the day).
  5. Middlemarch

    Middlemarch Star commenter

    Nor me. I cannot imagine any head doing so.

    I've done alphabetical order, reverse alphabetical order and 'distance to travel home' order.
  6. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    It's always a question of practicality. If interviewing for a teacher of science, specialism undecided, we'd look for a Chem lesson for the Chemist, would avoid the dificult class for all of the candiates, look at travel times, and try to get something that works and is user-friendly. As a fundilexic myself, I would list from Z to A....

    Read nothing at all into the order. Unless you also read tea leaves to tell your fortune.
  7. CWadd

    CWadd Star commenter

    Nope, not telling at all.

    I was interviewed at noon a few years ago by one school - who told me I didn't have to arrive until 11.30am as I was travelling for three hours just to get to the interview.

    I was also interviewed first once - because I was internal, and they wanted to observe and interview me so I could get straight back in and teach in the afternoon.

    If you are middle or last, it can be tough, as you may have to listen to other candidates jabbering on about how the lesson ob was amazing, or the HT asked nice questions - ignore them. One thing I've observed is people are nervous, and often spout rubbish to try and break the silence. Sitting quietly has a lot going for it!
  8. John_in_Luton

    John_in_Luton Occasional commenter

    Being last can also be tough if it means a lot of hanging around. I always try to arrange for candidates to be able to dip into lessons going on around the school if there's a gap between their lesson and their interview, for example. Better by far to be in a classroom where there's something going on to distract you, rather than sitting in a corner of the staffroom working yourself up into a nervous frenzy. It's also another chance to get a feel for the school.

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