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Stanford University Interview Questions & Reviews in Stanford, CA

Updated Jun 6, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting an Interview  

69%
15%
5%

Interview Experience  

69%
27%
3%

Interview Difficulty  

Average Difficulty
36 candidate interviews Back to all interview questions
Relevance Date Difficulty

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Very Easy Interview

Postdoctoral Scholar Interview

Postdoctoral Scholar
Stanford, CA

I applied in-person and the process took 2 days - interviewed at Stanford University in May 2012.

Interview Details – My future supervisor invited me for a two-day visit, flew me from New York City and got me two nights at a nice hotel. On campus, I gave a seminar in front of a somewhat large audience. I got to talk to some graduate students, some professor working in related fields, and some post-docs. A really pleasant experience overall. I was aware that I was the only candidate matching the profile, because the job had not been filled for two years and my future advisor told me so. He also knew that I had other options, so he had to work to convice me to come.

Interview Question – I did not get any questions really, it was more of a long ongoing discussion.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – Being European, I did not think about negociating. I probably should have.


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Neutral Experience

Difficult Interview

Academic Technology Interview

Academic Technology
Stanford, CA

I applied online - interviewed at Stanford University in October 2013.

Interview Details – Day-long interview with job talk. Multiple stakeholders are scheduled for 45 minute sessions. Unstructured questions. Lunch with unit staff. Dinner afterward. Very friendly atmosphere. It can be difficult when being interviewed by multiple staff whose internal dynamics come out in questioning. Endurance and diplomacy are important for the interview day.

Interview Question – Staff complain about lack of formal policy to govern their responsibility area and ask what you would do to fix it.   View Answer


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Graduate Research Assistant Interview

Graduate Research Assistant
Stanford, CA

I applied online and the process took 4 months - interviewed at Stanford University in September 2010.

Interview Details – The interview process begins when you are admitted as a graduate student. In order to be admitted you have to submit an application. Then if you're in the idea is to find an advisor willing to fund you. In order to get hired by a research group you will have to work on a project for a quarter and try to impress the professor.

Interview Question – I had to develop an advection code during the quarter that is able to account for shocks.   Answer Question


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Administrative Associate Interview

Administrative Associate
Stanford, CA

I applied online and the process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at Stanford University in January 2014.

Interview Details – Phone screen, then brought in for an interview. I did this for two different administrative positions

Interview Question – Do you think you will be bored in this position?   View Answer


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Stanford, CA

I applied in-person and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Stanford University in January 2010.

Interview Details – I interviewed only with my professor

Negotiation Details – I was given a salary that I accepted


1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Difficult Interview

Safety and Compliance Assistance Team Member Interview

Safety and Compliance Assistance Team Member
Stanford, CA

I applied online and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Stanford University in February 2014.

Interview Details – Applied online through the Stanford Careers website. Several days later, I was asked to fill out an additional questionnaire. Notable questions included the two listed below, as well as a question that essentially asks for things you'd have put in your cover letter anyway.

I had an initial interview with two supervisors a week later. A mix of standard interview questions (why do you want to work here, why are you leaving your previous job, what do you bring to the table), some old-school questions (what are your 3 greatest strengths? your 3 weaknesses?), and a discussion of what specifically the job entailed. This lasted one hour.

The second interview lasted around 1.5 hours. First was a panel interview with the supervisors and 5 people in the position I was applying for. Again, very standard questions, with some behavioral "how would you react to X situation." One interviewer asked me to give an impromptu explanation of a chemical concept at a level understandable to novices to the field. I was also given the chance to ask the interviewers questions about their experiences in the position.

Afterwards, I was given a Standard Operating Procedure to quickly look over and give my thoughts on it to the supervisors.

Another week later, I had a third interview with the supervisors where they asked me to address some concerns they had about hiring me - mainly about the transition from an academic environment to a more rigorously scheduled workplace. Later that day, HR contacted me and offered me a position.

Interview Question – Two gave me some trouble.

1. Give an example of a time when you had to work with a difficult individual. Describe what strategies you employed to deal with that person.

2. Give an example of a time when you recognized a safety hazard in your work environment. Describe your process for evaluating the hazard and what you did to manage and control the hazard.

In addition, Stanford apparently still uses hackneyed questions like "What are your greatest strengths and weaknesses in the workplace?" I honestly wasn't expecting that and was caught off guard.
  Answer Question

Negotiation Details – My lack of prior work experience did not put me in a good position to negotiate. I was also desperate for work at the time and did not wish to push the issue. Stanford pays quite well anyway.


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Very Easy Interview

Postdoctoral Researcher Interview

Postdoctoral Researcher
Stanford, CA

I applied through other source and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Stanford University in June 2011.

Interview Details – Just exchanged emails with my advisor, got an invitation letter attached to the 4th email, met him at first day in office.

Interview Question – No question asked, just resume review and explanation.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – no negotiation possible, there is a salary grid strictly enforced for the postdocs of my department


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Research Data Analyst Interview

Research Data Analyst
Stanford, CA

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 1 week - interviewed at Stanford University in April 2010.

Interview Details – The interview process involved one-on-one chats with project managers, professors and the executive director. A coding task was required but was not discussed with evaluator, that is, the task was completed and scored independently. Much of the interview was a discussion of past research projects to determine alignment of research interests.

Interview Question – No unexpected questions. Standard interview questions.   Answer Question


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Postdoctoral Researcher Interview

Postdoctoral Researcher
Stanford, CA

I applied through college or university and the process took 2 days - interviewed at Stanford University in August 2009.

Interview Details – I gave a job talk and met with several individuals int he laboratory I was applying for. Great interview with a clear display of career potential and with discussion of potential project and collaborations. Clear path to career development.

Interview Question – Not sure there was one. i guess that most difficult aspect of the interview is related with getting the standards high for your presentation. Scientific standards are high at Stanford.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – Great. I managed to get my moving expenses payed for. Which is not common for a postdoc.


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Postdoctoral Research Fellow Interview

Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Stanford, CA

I applied in-person and the process took 3 days - interviewed at Stanford University in August 2010.

Interview Details – Met a professor at a conference, was invited to give a job-talk. A few scientific question about my research were asked, a couple of meetings with some lab members to feel whether both sides match.

Interview Question – I was asked about a technical detail in the host lab which I wasn't familiar with.   View Answer

Negotiation Details – I was able to negotiate my salary, managed to raise 10%.

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