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Questions About Interviewing & Related Topics

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by ClinPsyL, 01.13.10.

  1. pavotuqui

    pavotuqui

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    so I went to an interview a couple of weeks ago and never thought to write them a thank you email because I thought I had done a good job of showing my appreciation while at the interview...however, after reading these posts I realize that maybe sending a short thank you email would have been a good idea. Is it too late now to send them an email now just saying that I am still very interested in the program and looking forward to their admission decisions? I know they have not finalized their admission decisions yet because they told me during the interview that I would not hear back from them for at least 5 or so weeks! Any advice? Thank you!:confused:
  2. robinsena

    robinsena

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    As long as they haven't made up their minds, I don't see why not. I would personally send them that email. You might even look at it as a way of letting them know that they made such a good impression on you, you're still thinking of them. :D

  3. Ganzheit

    Ganzheit

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    It's never too late for a thank you note, but make it a genuine thank you, not 'still interested, can't wait until to let me know.' A thank you.
  4. ibs5002

    ibs5002

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    ...
    Last edited: 02.11.10
  5. ibs5002

    ibs5002

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  6. cheer12345

    cheer12345

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    Alright guys, so I received an invitation to my first PhD interview (already on the list) last week. I want to assure that I come in 100% prepared. Here are a few questions:

    1.) Although the school is not on a mentor model, I was in brief contact with a POI last semester. I have his CV but he only has 9 pubs listed, some of which are listed in press and I cannot really get my hands on most of them (through online searches). Is it appropriate to contact him, let him know I will be there for an interview, ask him to send me articles, and ask for any other tips that he has??

    2.) Truthfully, he is the only faculty member that I am interested in working with, but the school asks us to list three! What should I do here??

    3.) I was also in contact with a current student last year. Is it appropriate to contact him again, just to remind him who I am and see if he is available to answer any questions about interview day logistics and what to expect? (He has already answered all my questions about the program itself.)

    4.) How many articles should I aim to read for each person that I list (especially the one whom I am very interested in working under)?

    Thanks so much in advance for your help!! Any other general tips would be much appreciated as well!
  7. ILGirl

    ILGirl

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    1) Yes, I would contact him. I would just remind him who you are (that you've contacted him before) and ask him if he would be willing to send you the articles. I would NOT ask him for tips.

    2) List 3. When they ask you to do something, follow the directions. Read some of their research. You might actually find some common ground.

    4) Read as many articles as you possibly can, especially the more recent articles!!!
  8. PsychAddict

    PsychAddict

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    hey there, does anyone know what the appropriate way is to withdraw an application. Also, when I withdraw do I have to provide an explanation? I decided that I really do not want to move to another state regardless of whether I get admitted anywhere this year but I'm afraid this might make me look flaky. I have already been invited for some interviews but I want to give other students the opportunity to go since I'm not totally enthused about going to those programs. Any suggestions, or advice is greatly appreciated.
  9. ILGirl

    ILGirl

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    The Council of University Directors of Clinical Psychology's Guidelines for Graduate School :
    http://www.temple.edu/psychology/Cli...guidelines.pdf

    If you have 1) been offered admission at one of the other universities, or 2) are listed high on the waitlist, you need to CALL the university and tell them you have accepted another offer. Then, you need to follow up with a written communication of the same within 24 hours.

    If you are on the alternate list, but not high on it, you need to send a letter to the program within 48 hours.

    ---
    The guidelines don't say what people should do when they don't know where they stand with the program. My personal opinion: If you don't know where you stand with the program, I would still send them a letter within 48 hours. . . . And, I would not give them a reason. Just let them know that you would like to withdraw your application and thank them.

    Good luck!!
  10. PsychAddict

    PsychAddict

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    Thanks, I'm also thinking about calling the schools that have invited me for interviews. It's probably the most appropriate thing to do. Thanks for the link
  11. ILGirl

    ILGirl

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    Yes, I think that is a good idea, especially if those interviews are soon. The program can then extend another interview invite if it wishes.
  12. Alacrity

    Alacrity

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  13. Alacrity

    Alacrity

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  14. hamsterpants

    hamsterpants

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  15. ILGirl

    ILGirl

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  16. psyc123

    psyc123

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    question: when you go for an interview, are you competing with those who applied to work with the same supervisor as you or with everyone else?
  17. krisrox

    krisrox

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    Depends on the program.
  18. gradpsyc

    gradpsyc

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    I recently interviewed at a program and was not particularly impressed with it. I want to be polite and send everyone I met there a quick thank you email, but I don't know how to do that without letting them know that I am not really interested in going there. (But I also don't want to lie and say that I would love to attend their school..) Any suggestions? :confused:
  19. krisrox

    krisrox

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    I had a similar experience. I just said thanks for the interview, I enjoyed learning about the program, and I'm eager to hear back. Not all a lie, but not exactly spilling my disappointment for the program, either. If you KNOW you're not going to go there, though, let them know and withdraw your application. Someone else might appreciate a spot more than you would.
  20. futureapppsy2

    futureapppsy2 Ed Psych PhD student Moderator Gold Donor

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    This seems like a good way to go about it to me.
  21. Blue86

    Blue86

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    Hello everyone,

    Anyone willing to share info about difficult questions on interviews? How many general clinical psych/stats/research methods have you guys been asked on interviews? Or other type of very unexpected and hard to answer on the spot questions? I am interviewing on what is considered here a balanced program, but at a top school, and I am very anxious :( I keep thinking they will ask me something I didn't prepare for and that I will make a fool of myself. So please share any insight if you'd like, it will be greatly appreciated!
  22. PsyDWannabe

    PsyDWannabe HpfulboutGradSchl

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    +1
  23. psychadelics

    psychadelics

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    Let talk about taking notes in an interview. I say yay (to a point). I'm interested in people who have gone on interviews, whether they took notes, whether others around you did, and your general outlook on this.
  24. Featheredwyngs

    Featheredwyngs

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    I would only take notes if it's honestly helpful for you. I haven't taken a single note at/during any of my interviews (and I already have a couple of admission offers)... thus, it's not going to make or break your chances. I've mostly seen people taking notes at group meetings during interviews... I would feel awkward taking notes during a one on one interview (which I treat more like a conversation).
  25. psychgrad10

    psychgrad10

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    I had to... I always have questions and then I forget them, so it was really helpful to remember really good questions/important information

    If you're sitting there scribbling notes like you're in class it may not be a good thing, but in moderation I think it's fine. Bring a notepad just in case, it may come in handy, if not at least you were prepared
  26. Featheredwyngs

    Featheredwyngs

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    I haven't had anyone ask me too difficult of questions... mainly, what are my research interests. Some basic questions about why I applied to their program or what I'm looking for in a program (which usually leads them to talking about their program or them asking you if you have questions for them). What else? One person asked me what would be my ideal research study to conduct (if I had unlimited time and money). Some have asked me about my future career goals / where I would like to go with my research in the future.... And a couple have asked me to give examples of things outside of my academic life that show something (courage, success, etc). And, finally, most have asked me where else I applied/am interviewing.

    Nothing really caught me by surprise.
    Last edited: 02.16.10
  27. Blue86

    Blue86

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    Seems reasonable to me... (the questions you received). I hate stress interviews. :mad: I am also "interviewing" them right? So them putting me through a lot of stress (much more than I have to) to go there makes me dislike the school. Maybe it's just me. Did your co-worker interview at a research heavy school?
    Thank you for the tips.
  28. Featheredwyngs

    Featheredwyngs

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    Yeah, and usually a good part of the interview time is reserved for you asking them questions - so I'd have a good three in pocket to bring out and ask.

    Most of the programs I applied to are research heavy (as you can tell by their questions). Oh. Some did ask me (in terms of career etc.) what's my ideal balance (btw research/practice etc.).

    I also imagine questions can vary greatly by POIs within programs.
    Last edited: 02.16.10
  29. Blue86

    Blue86

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    I actually really like the part of asking them questions.. I can learn so much through their answers, how they answer, and get the info that will help me take the final decision. It also seems more balanced when you get enough time in an interview to ask a lot of questions, not just a "courteous" three minutes. I know that people ask stress questions to see how you handle the pressure, but really, isn't it enough that we got so far? :D
    Ahhh... is it april yet?? :smuggrin:
  30. Metta

    Metta Human

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    I've never been asked any stats/research methods questions in interviews. I've only interviewed at PhD programs that have a fairly balanced research/clinical emphasis and at PsyD programs, though, and I have no idea if this would hold at a strongly research-oriented PhD program. The only general clinical psych question I've been asked was something along the lines of, "what do you think about the validity of X as a diagnosis?", where X is one of my primary areas of research and clinical interest. Easy enough for me to answer (I could chatter for 15-20 minutes on the subject :D), but it was a bit unexpected.

    Other than that, there have been a few questions that I've only been asked by one interviewer thus far, and so might be considered less common: "What sorts of clients or clinical populations might you find difficult to work with?", "What style of mentor do you work best with?", "How do you handle criticism?", "What would you bring to our program that other equally-qualified applicants would not?" I've seen all of those on lists of potential interview questions, though, so I don't know that they'd be considered very difficult or unexpected.

    One difficult interview situation I've faced happened when I was being interviewed by a professor and a grad student; the professor was seated behind his desk, while the student and I were seated at side-by-side chairs in front of the desk, so I was unable to look directly at both of them without a lot of awkward shifting around in my seat. If I had a do-over on that, I'd have asked to move my chair a bit (around to the corner/side of the desk, if that makes sense) so that I was at least sort of facing both of them. Physical positioning during interviews does have an impact, and if you're like me, it's not something you're aware of until it's too late. :oops:
  31. futureapppsy2

    futureapppsy2 Ed Psych PhD student Moderator Gold Donor

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    I don really like asking questions during interviews, tbh Don't get me wrong--I love the info, but I feel like the interview is a chance for the program to learn about (and hopefully like ;)) ME, and if they accept me, then I'll still have a chance to dig deeper into the program, whereas the interview will determine (to some degree, at least) whether or not they "choose" me.
  32. ILGirl

    ILGirl

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    You need to look at it differently. The questions you ask can allow the interviewers to get to know you. They can learn a lot about you: How insightful are your questions? Do they show a level of maturity?

    For example, when answering your questions, they may remark that it is important to have worked with children. If you didn't already mention that when they asked you questions, you can then let them know that you have worked with children and in what capacity.
    Last edited: 02.15.10
  33. psychstudent613

    psychstudent613

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    A lot of talk is going on about asking questions, but can someone state some ideas about what kind of questions to ask on interviews? Of course they would have to be tailored to the particular program, but what sort of things can you talk about? not talk about? Any sample questions to get the juices flowing?
    Thanks!
  34. bookends

    bookends

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    i plan on asking about when i start practica, what kind of clinical opportunities are available (what types of populations, what types of settings), how long it takes to complete the program, percent of people that get matched with an internship and where. stuff along those lines :)
  35. Metta

    Metta Human

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    You might want to have some more "obscure" questions prepared, as well. I've found that the sorts of questions you've listed are often answered during formal presentations to the interviewees (e.g., the DCT or head of the admissions committee gives a brief introduction to the program to start off the interview day, current students meet with a group of interviewees to discuss the program and answer questions, or similar). I don't like asking questions that have already been answered in those kinds of group settings, since it would look like I wasn't paying attention.
  36. futureapppsy2

    futureapppsy2 Ed Psych PhD student Moderator Gold Donor

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    Oh, I know. Heck, one school that admitted me even commented on what good questions I asked!

    I guess it just feels counterintuitive to me.
  37. HopefulPsych15

    HopefulPsych15

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    Is there a point when it is ok to contact the POI after an interview to check on your status? I am pretty sure some people have already been offered acceptance and I have not yet heard anything. In addition to applying to schools, I applied to some jobs, and one of them might have a start date in April...
  38. Jezebel09

    Jezebel09

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    I would give them some more time. . . . If you end up being offered the job with the start date in April, then you could call your POI and just say that you would like to know your status because you are still interested in his or her school but you have been offered a job.
  39. ibs5002

    ibs5002

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    One question that I always ask anyone who interviews me is "What do you think makes the program here at School X stand out from programs at other schools?" Not only is this a great opportunity to see what different faculty members view as their program's strengths, but the question also kind of reminds them that we are interviewing them for a good fit as well. Hope that helps! :)
  40. catonthecouch

    catonthecouch

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    Hey, I am going to some interviews and because I don't have a car, my dear old dad has cheerfully agreed to drive me. How do I handle this? Some are too far away for him to go away but close enough that we wont have a hotel or something to go back to. Do people bring plus ones to their interviews? I am worried about highlighting my age/inexperience. Thanks!
  41. koopatroopa

    koopatroopa

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    I honestly wouldn't worry about that at all! No professor or graduate student is going to judge you if you don't drive yourself; however, I wouldn't bring your dad to the interview. Could he drive you there, then pick you up once you finish?
  42. koopatroopa

    koopatroopa

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    I honestly wouldn't worry about that at all! No professor or graduate student is going to judge you if you don't drive yourself, however, I wouldn't bring your dad to the interview.
  43. PsychApps2009

    PsychApps2009

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    My parents helped to drive me to an interview recently because my flight was canceled and I luckily got stuck in the city where they live. We drove all night and my POI and graduate student host were aware that my parents were helping me with the drive. They didn't seem to care at all, outside of the fact that they complimented us for putting in the effort to get there whatever way we could.

    However, I did *not* bring my parents to the interview - they got a hotel in the area for $45 and literally slept all day. I'm sure your dad could find a book store or mall to hang out in during the day - or just get a cheap hotel room to rest in after driving you there (and before driving you back). [If they end up meeting your dad that's fine (they met mine - quick hello and thank you) - but I don't know if I'd have him sitting in the psych dept. office all day... that might be a little weird.]
  44. multicultpsyc

    multicultpsyc

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    Hey everyone. I have a question. I know there has been talk about declining admission offers, but does anyone have good etiquette for declining interviews? I applied to a program as a backup being afraid that I would not get any interviews. I have been blessed enough to have offers and more interviews to come. I don't want to take someone else's spot at the interview since I am no longer considering the school seriously. Does any one have any good suggestions for what to say in the email so that it doesn't sound like I was never interested at all? Also, I am unsure that I will take the offers I have now so I don't want to lie and say that I am accepting an offer yet. Thanks in advance! :)
  45. psychstudent613

    psychstudent613

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    I can see where you get your nerves from, but really- relax!
    Maybe your father can go to a bookstore, coffee shop, mall ect to hang out at for a few hours.
    I had a similar issue where I was traveling by subway to the school and did not know how to go to the campus from the train and back (my directions I got from the web was wrong)- I was almost willing to get lost so not to show how inexperienced and unprepared I was... but I asked and I think the school thought it was ok.
  46. PsychApps2009

    PsychApps2009

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    I just kept it short and sweet.
    I wrote something to the effect of:

    Dear _______,

    I want to thank you once more for inviting me to interview and helping to coordinate the interview day at ______ University. I am writing to you today, however, because I have been extended an offer of admissions at another institution, which I plan to accept. Thus, I want to decline my interview spot (on [date]) for ________ University's program, in the hope that it may not be too late to free up a spot for someone else.

    Thank you once more for all of you attention and help,
    [your name]

    You said you had offers and interviews to come, so it wouldn't be a lie. I don't know 100% if I plan to accept the offer I have... but at the end of the day I know I would accept it over that program. Does that make sense? It was just the easiest way to turn them down for me.

    PS - I don't know if the "freeing up a spot" is necessary or even appropriate... but I literally just wrote this on a whim (feel free to adapt as you like). Granted, with this program I had only been in contact with the coordinator - not with the actual professor. There are some programs that I can imagine would be harder to turn down, as I've had a good back and forth with the actual POI.
  47. Sunshine3710

    Sunshine3710

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    I agree. I think many interviewees are going to places they have never been before, and it is definitely appropriate to ask for directions.
  48. cheer12345

    cheer12345

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    Is it OK to bring a water bottle along to my interviews??

    I know I will have a folder with my CV and questions in one hand, but can I have a water bottle in the other?

    Also, is there anything else I should put in my folder?

    Thanks!
  49. Buzzwordsoldier

    Buzzwordsoldier

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    I'll be travelling out of state for my interviews, arriving a day early and staying less than a mile of them. Even so, you can be dang sure I'm going to take a practice stroll or two before the big event. I imagine I'll be so amped I'll be noting hazards, potential distractions, hangouts, traffic patterns, microclimates, etc.... probably going to use google maps street view a few times between now and then, too. :D
  50. psychstudent613

    psychstudent613

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    I dont want you to think I was unprepared at all... it was too far for me to go on a practice stroll, but I did plan on a lot of extra time in case I got lost, delays ect. Even with all this, I was very early. I had looked at a website (or two or three) for directions there and it was wrong...I checked the weather there (even though it wasnt that different from where I was) You can never be too prepared! :)

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