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Teach for America Corps Member Interview Questions

Updated Dec 5, 2014
Updated Dec 5, 2014
128 Interview Reviews

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3 people found this helpful  

Corps Member Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in Newark, NJ
Anonymous Interview Candidate in Newark, NJ
Application Details

The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Teach for America in December 2008.

Interview Details

The interview process for Teach for America is fairly long and involved, but it is worth it. There are four rotating deadlines throughout the year. First there is a written application, which involves all of the normal personal information, your school transcripts, a letter of intent, and a short essay. There is a lot of emphasis throughout the interview process on overcoming obstacles and how you deal with obstacles and stress. If you passed the written interview, you will be notified in about a week that you have made it to the phone interview phase. Several articles will be available to read online, and your phone interviewer will ask you to discuss them. My interviewer also asked me how I have worked with others in past situations (including people that I did not get along with) and asked me to discuss another situation in which I was working on a project and faced a challenge. We discussed the reasons that I was applying, my views on the achievement gap, and what I thought the reasons for the gap are. They said to expect the phone interview to be about half an hour, but mine was around 50 minutes. About a week after the phone interview, I was notified that I had made it to the final in-person interview. There were many dates and locations to choose from, and this was all done online. Before the final interview, there was more assigned reading and I also had to rank my choices of the regions throughout the country. On the interview day, the morning consisted of a sample teaching session for 5 minutes (be sure to state what your goals are and interact with the other interviewees, who are your "class") as well as small group activities. Then we did individual interviews in the afternoon. The notification day was not for about 6 weeks after my final interview, so the overall process was about two months from the time that I first applied to the day I received my offer. They will offer you a region and a tentative grade level assignment, and you have to take what you get-- no negotiating!

Interview Questions
  • Describe a time that you were working on a project with a specific goal, and you encountered an obstacle. How did you deal with the situation?   Answer Question
Accepted Offer
Positive Experience
Difficult Interview

Other Interview Reviews for Teach for America

  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Corps Member Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 daysinterviewed at Teach for America in March 2008.

    Interview Details

    The process required quite a bit of preparation, including pre-interview reading materials and preparing a 5 minute presentation. The process of the online application resembled that of an undergraduate school application. This was followed by a 30 minute phone interview and then a 6 hour, all-day, one-on-one interview.

    Interview Questions
    • The interviewers create a scenario and the interviewee is expected to take on the role of a teacher who is bargaining with his/her principal for classroom materials.   View Answer
    Negotiation Details
    Potential corps members are able to negotiate placement locations across the country, as well as the general teaching age one would like to be with.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2.  

    Corps Member Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Binghamton, NY
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Binghamton, NY
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took a weekinterviewed at Teach for America in April 2008.

    Interview Details

    You phone interview first. Then you may make it to the day-long interview. The day long interview consists of some team working projects, analytical tests, a sample teaching, role-playing and a one on one interview. In the team working projects, make sure to be inclusive of all people, be respectful and open minded, listen well, and share your own ideas. In the sample teaching, the most important piece is the reflection afterwards. Be sure your lesson has a beginning, middle, and assessment at the end. The people were very professional. The work culture is tenacious and no-nonsense. Everyone is focused towards "continuually increasing effectiveness," so constructive criticism is valued, solicited, and responded to promptly. This is one of the most fluid, effective, and efficient organizations in the United States. The reason is that everyone leaves their personal pride behind to work towards the collective mission of closing the achievement gap. This is the type of person that they are looking for. If you get the job with TFA, do not accept unless you are willing to put your students first, above yourself, and to work 80+ hour weeks, especially in your first year as a corps member. This being said, as a corps member you will experience unimaginable personal growth.

    Interview Questions
    • What would you do if a principal forced you to cut science from your elementary curriculum because the state only tested English and Math?   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    There are no negotiations, except maybe on where of the 28 TFA regions you will be placed in. If there are extenuating family circumstances or health issues, you get to choose more directly.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3. 5 people found this helpful  

    Corps Member Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at Teach for America in November 2008.

    Interview Details

    I was attracted to Teach for America for many reasons--a chance to make an immediate difference, the challenge, chance to move across the country, free masters degree, alumni network, grad school applications--and recruited by Teach For America to be a recruiter myself. Thus, I had already worked as a Campus Campaign Coordinator at the University of Southern California for almost 4 months before applying.

    Essentially, make sure that you do research on education inequity, the progress that Teach For America has made, and that you're joining the movement for the right reasons. The application process is becoming more competitive, and it boils down to qualified people are turned away because they don't have the knowledge about or drive to fix education.

    Draft responses to address the following issues: a difficulty you have overcome, a success story despite obstacles, your understanding of public education. Avoid generalizations and statements about education that you cannot quantify or speak for personally.

    Also, make sure you do at least one test-run of your lesson plan with someone who has taught. They will offer excellent advice of how to clarify your instruction.

    Interview Questions
    • I had to role-play a situation where my principal would not allow my students to take home library materials in order to finish research for their term papers (4th grade... I was being ambitious. ;-)

      My goal was to convince her to let them have more access to the materials.
       
      View Answer
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
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  5.  

    Corps Member Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    The process took 2+ monthsinterviewed at Teach for America in April 2009.

    Interview Details

    The interview process was intense. After an initial application read-through, you are invited to a phone interview or straight through to the final interview. The final interview is a day-long session consisting of a 5 minute classroom presentation, a group discussion, 1-1, writing sample, and basic skills test. Interviewers are very friendly and make you feel comfortable, despite the nervewracking experience.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  6.  

    Corps Member Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Los Angeles, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Los Angeles, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2+ weeksinterviewed at Teach for America in September 2009.

    Interview Details

    The interview process is quite strenuous, but it seems like if you read over the common interview questions posted on this website, you should be able to get through the phone interview pretty easily. On the phone interview, they will go over your experience, some challenges you have faced and how well organized you are

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
  7.  

    Corps Member Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Berkeley, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Berkeley, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took a dayinterviewed at Teach for America in November 2009.

    Interview Details

    I had a phone interview that consisted on several case questions. The interview lasted about 30 minutes. To get the phone interview I had to apply online and write an essay, submit my resume, and have several references. The online interview process was easy, but the phone interview was intimidating.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  8.  

    Corps Member Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took a weekinterviewed at Teach for America in October 2009.

    Interview Details

    The interview event was about 8 hours long. We started with a sample teaching lesson that I thought I did very well on, and then we went on to take a test, write some essays, have a group discussion in which we were evaluated, and then we ended with a one on one interview. I thought I did extremely well the entire time but I was not offered a position.

    Interview Questions
    • We were given a situation to act out with the interviewer, and we had some time to prepare, but the interviewer still surprised me with the way they acted out their end. They were persistent and really tried to get you to be stumped.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Corps Member Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Teach for America in October 2009.

    Interview Details

    The thing to remember is that TFA is looking to staff its own mission - to raise test scores. It is not necessarily looking for innovative teachers, THEY will train you in their own innovative teaching methods. Just show that you believe in their mission and are organized and efficient; make sure that you reference their core values at least once.

    Interview Questions
    Negotiation Details
    There is no negotiation except for regional placement preference. You pick three regions, and they will plug you into a staffing vacancy there.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  10.  

    Corps Member Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at Teach for America in March 2009.

    Interview Details

    The phone interview focused on gauging your interest for TFA. The final round was a presentation, group discussion, essay test, and 1:1. The 1:1 was behavioral. They want to get a sense of how you work with difficult people and dealt with difficult situations. Really focus on how assertive/determined you are.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

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