CIA Interview Questions

Updated Aug 10, 2014
Updated Aug 10, 2014
13 Interview Reviews

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13 Candidate Interview Reviews Back to all interviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    National Clandestine Service Summer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 4 months - interviewed at CIA.

    Interview Details

    As expected, the process was long and vague. The interviews were conducted by a HR rep not connected to the NCS. The interview was very probing and it felt as if its goal was to put you out of your comfort zone.

    Interview Questions
    • How does your proudest accomplishment negatively affect your personality and lifestyle?   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
  2.  

    Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    On-campus recruiters came to my school; I submitted my resume and was asked to come the next day for an on-campus interview for a science/technology analyst. The 2 female interviewers were nice, but asked challenging questions. Maybe 2 weeks later, I was emailed to take online tests -- a personality one and a timed IQ-type test. I thought that I did well enough on the IQ test, but probably didn't pass the personality test (I have anxiety issues that it asked about). I got a rejection letter in the mail a few weeks later.

    Interview Questions
    • What is a science/technology issue currently facing the US, and what would you do to address it?   Answer Question
    No Offer
  3.  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took a day - interviewed at CIA.

    Interview Details

    Purely behavioral with no technical questions, they just asked stuff about challenges I had faced, how I usually worked with other people.

    Notable is that after interviewing you, they need security clearance on you, which would take a long time to complete, which meant you would technically be interviewing for the following summer, because you would not have the clearance in time. I opted not to subject myself to the security clearance

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Easy Interview
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  5.  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online - interviewed at CIA.

    Interview Details

    after you fill out online application, you receive a survey/personality assessment, then interviews, and background check.

    Interview Questions
    • they don't tell you the test is actually timed.   View Answer
    No Offer
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Core Collector Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Standard phone interview followed up by many more steps. A lot of this can not be disclosed due to the security of this job. It is extremely bureaucratic (it is the government after all) and if you are in search of a "quick fill" position this is not it. The average time is 12-18 months for the whole hiring process.

    Interview Questions
    • Pretty much standard behavioral interview questions. Be prepared to do a lot of research and be fully investing in this one position.   Answer Question
    No Offer
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Intelligence Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Applied online. Got an email telling me to complete an online aptitude test. After that I got another email stating that I will be interviewing in Washington DC. Interview was mostly standard behavior engineering team questions. Stuff about how you would handle working in groups, questions about bad team mates and such.

    Interview Questions
    • Describe in exact detail a time when constructive criticism was helpful.   Answer Question
    No Offer
  8. 12 people found this helpful  

    Operations Officer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Washington, DC
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Washington, DC
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3 months - interviewed at CIA in August 2010.

    Interview Details

    First step consisted of an online application for one or more positions. I was told later on that there is a hierarchy among the various directorates as to which gets first crack at the candidates available with Operations being first on that list.

    About a month later I was contacted and asked to set up a phone interview. The phone interview lasted around 30 min and consisted of some basic personal questions and a few general knowledge items regarding the agency and its mission.

    Several weeks later I received a packet asking for more information. The response included several personal / motivation for applying questions and an essay about a current international issue. In addition to the written material, I had to take an online personality assessment and IQ test.

    About a month after that I was contacted by phone (a negative response comes in the form of a letter) and invited to an information session in the Northern VA area and asked to set up an appointment for the first 1:1 interview. The information session was with a large group of people, lasted around 5 hours, and covered all the basics about positions within the Operations Directorate and general details about life undercover.

    The interview is scheduled within a week of the information session and was conducted at an off-site agency building. The interview was conducted by a retired Operations Officer and consisted of basic interview type questions (resume review, motivations, strengths, weaknesses, life choices, etc...) In addition I was asked to discuss another current foreign affair (different from the previous essay) and also participated in several role playing exercises based on typical duties of an officer.

    I choose not to pursue the position after that point, but from what I learned the next step (1-2 months later) consisted of a three day round of a 2nd 1:1 interview (similar to the first), another aptitude test, and psychological evaluation. Upon successful completion of that, candidates receive a conditional offer of employment. From there you must pass medical and background checks. Overall the process from application to start date can take up to or more than a year.

    General Thoughts: The process requires a long time to complete. An understanding of the concept of cover is important. Checking out some of the suggested reading material (provided early on) is a good idea. Overall a career in intelligence is probably less interesting that you would have thought (at least that was the case for myself).

    Interview Questions
    • Describe a time when you've lied.   View Answer
    • Describe a time when you manipulated another person to get something you wanted.   View Answer
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Washington, DC
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Washington, DC
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took a day - interviewed at CIA in January 2008.

    Interview Details

    The interview lasted for about 1 hour. The questions were both about my professional qualifications, along with my personal situation. At one point the interviewer had me explain to him my understanding of the political situation in a region outside the US. I could choose the region I told him about. The interviewer was very interested to know my language skills.

    Interview Questions
    • Tell me, in detail, your understanding of a political situation of a country outside your area of expertise.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  10. 5 people found this helpful  

    Staff Operations Officer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 10 months - interviewed at CIA in March 2012.

    Interview Details

    Begins with the online application. From there, there is a telephone interview with a recruiter, basic behavioral interview questions. They will also go over your resume with you. After that, you will be invited to an information session, where they will explain in detail the particulars of working for the agency; immediately following that, there will be a one-on-one interview with an agent or former agent. In addition to standard interview questions, there are also things such as current event knowledge questions and role playing scenarios. Assuming you get past this stage, you are then flown out to DC for at least three day There will be a another 1:1 interview, this time even more detailed and with more role-playing scenarios. Finally, there is an interview with a psychologist, which is very much so like a behavioral interview, just way more intrusive and detailed. From there there are two options: you receive a rejection letter (which I did); or you receive a condition offer of employment, which is conditional upon the completion of a deep background investigation that normally takes another 6 months to a year to complete, in addition to medical testing and a polygraph test.

    The main bad thing about the interview process was that it was SO LONG. From the date of my initial application to my final rejection just before the COE, it was a total of 10 months. If I had made it further, it would have been as much as another 12 months before I could enter on duty. Which can make rejection that much more painful.

    Other than that, though, it was a pleasant interview process. Anyone who applies and makes it even to the info session should consider themselves lucky: the Agency gets tens of thousands of applications for each position it opens--just making the cut is an achievement. If you are lucky enough to make it to the second round of interviews, they fly you out and reimburse you--and usually you do have enough free time to enjoy the area a bit.

    Interview Questions
    • Describe in detail an international current event, and how is it important to American interests?   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  11. 5 people found this helpful  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    The process took a day - interviewed at CIA in September 2010.

    Interview Details

    Talked to a recruiter at a university career fair about an internship as a weapons analyst. Received a call that night for an on-campus interview the next morning.

    Interviewer was nice and the interview was relatively relaxed. Asked a set of standard behavioral questions and also asked what in my opinion was the most important issue America was facing. Questions were mainly focused on leadership experience.

    Interview went well but was unable to continue with application process because I was planning on some international travel between the interview and the internship period when the background check would be taking place.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

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