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Jericho

Interview

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My POI at one of my top schools has emailed me and asked for an interview for this week. Does anyone know what I should expect them to ask? Any help would be great. Thanks!

 

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Two words: Search function.  This question gets asked multiple times every single year.  Go back a few pages and you'll see threads about interviews with reports/impressions/advice within.

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42 minutes ago, TMP said:

Two words: Search function.  This question gets asked multiple times every single year.  Go back a few pages and you'll see threads about interviews with reports/impressions/advice within.

Thanks! I went back about four or five pages but I didn't see anything. Also I wasn't sure how to narrow it to specifically the History board, but now that I'm on my computer (I had been on my phone) it's clearer.

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@Jericho While it has been stated many times on this Forum, I also had a difficult time finding the information on interviews. Typically, the History department interviewers ask about your research interests, scholarly influences, foreign language competency, your strengths and weaknesses, and your overall journey as a scholar. Also, they can be very formal, but are often more informal and laid back than you would assume.

Hope this helps!

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Re: the search function, it helps if you limit your search within the history forum and pair "interview" with other key words, e.g. “asked" (yeah, I know, sounds silly, but imagine in a scenario where people could have said "at my interview, I was asked this and that question"), "prepare", "project", etc.)

Here is the result if you search "interview” AND "asked" only within the History forum: https://forum.thegradcafe.com/search/?&q="interview" "asked" &type=forums_topic&nodes=38&search_and_or=and&sortby=relevancy

 

Honestly, what I learned from my three interviews (with UPenn, UCSB, and Columbia) is, the most difficult question (in my case) is a seemingly mundane one: "tell us about you/how do you see yourself [as an aspiring historian]". The relatively easier one is the standard "tell us more about your project".

 

Good luck with the interview!

Edited by AnUglyBoringNerd

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My advice is to prepare some questions about the department (after looking through their website to make sure the questions aren't too basic and won't make you look like you didn't do any research). Also look through your interviewer(s)' CV(s) and make sure you know what kind of work they're doing right now and, if that info is publicly available, what dissertations they're supervising and what classes they're teaching. (If you can't find this info on the internet, it could be a good question to ask.) You don't need to actually read their work, but you may feel underprepared if you have no idea what they're up to, which is how I felt in one of my Skype interviews.

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On 2/3/2019 at 2:27 PM, Jericho said:

My POI at one of my top schools has emailed me and asked for an interview for this week. Does anyone know what I should expect them to ask? Any help would be great. Thanks!

 

 

On 2/3/2019 at 2:55 PM, TMP said:

Two words: Search function.  This question gets asked multiple times every single year.  Go back a few pages and you'll see threads about interviews with reports/impressions/advice within.

Back in the day when I used The Grad Café for guidance, I found the advice very helpful. I agree with @TMP BUT let me tell you that the interview I had in the place where I am now had absolutely nothing to do with what anyone had anticipated. 

They had thoroughly read my sample and asked me about methods, framework, and impact. Not in those words, of course. The questions were like: "We see from your writing sample that you are interested in national identity. What would the study of national identity in your area add to the field?" "We found this framework very interesting. Have you read X? [No, I haven't] Well, they argued blah blah blah. How do you see that informing your work?" 

What did match TGC advice was this: HAVE INTELLIGENT QUESTIONS TO ASK THEM. Mine were silly (one of the questions was 'what happens now?') Good questions can be (provided the responses are not online): What opportunities are there for exploring digital humanities? How do seminar/colloquiums look like? (eg: I would have loved to know that some require research papers while others, in addition, require as 'papers' grant applications or syllabi). 

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Thanks, all! As I was advised, I had questions prepared to ask and I think the interview went pretty well. I'll let you know how it turns out!

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