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Teach for America Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Aug 18, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting an Interview  

76%
10%
7%

Interview Experience  

68%
24%
7%

Interview Difficulty  

Average Difficulty
427 candidate interviews
Relevance Date Difficulty
in

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Teacher Interview

Teacher
New York, NY (US)

I applied online and the process took 3 months - interviewed at Teach for America in March 2013.

Interview Details Process is long. Be prepared to write compelling answers to the questions in the application. Make sure you are informative about any activities you were involved with during undergrad. Show your leadership skills.

Interview Question – Why teaching? How will you handle backlash from an administrator?   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – Took about 3 months


Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Manager Interview

Manager

I applied through another source and the process took 5+ weeks - interviewed at Teach for America.

Interview Details Interview was very thorough. They do not really do a good job of getting to know the new employer. It is clear there is a right answer and if you dont say the right answer, with respect to their corp values, they wont seek to understand why you disagree. Very difficult to get accepted but if you talk about you lack of priviledge...ie if you are of any minority than it is A LOT easier to get in.

Interview Question – How do you feel about profound additional impact within the classroom?   Answer Question


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Teacher Interview

Teacher

Interviewed at Teach for America

Interview Details I first filled out the online application and met with a recruiter from my school. Then I had a phone interview, which was very nice. I did some online tests and then was offered a final in-person interview, which lasted all day.

Interview Question – The sample teaching lesson was the most difficult for me because the outlines were very vague.   Answer Question


Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Manager Interview

Manager

Interviewed at Teach for America

Interview Details This was a very thorough and thoughtful process. Most questions are relevant, thought provoking, and really get down to how well you will perform in the job. There are technical aspects depending upon the role, but this was a key indicator of success for me as a candidate as well as the hiring manager.

Interview Question – If outside the organization, knowledge of the nature of the work as a whole.   Answer Question


Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Teacher Interview

Teacher
Charlotte, NC (US)

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 4 months - interviewed at Teach for America in August 2013.

Interview Details Exteremely long and througoh interview process. only recruit the highest achieving students. your area of study will have no effect on if you are hired or not and it will not affect what area you are place to teach

Interview Question – Tell us you biggest weakness   Answer Question


Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Difficult Interview

TFA Corps Member Interview

TFA Corps Member
Cambridge, MA (US)

I applied through college or university - interviewed at Teach for America in February 2010.

Interview Details It's been about five years, so my memory is a little fuzzy but as I recall: I submitted my application online during the third application cycle and was notified a few days later that I was accepted for a 15 minute phone interview. After this interview, I was notified that I had moved on to the next phase of the interview cycle, an all-day interview. This interview was broken down into different parts: a five minute sample lesson, a group interview and problem solving session, and an individual interview. The five minute sample lesson will be with a small group of about 10 people, who all get up and teach for a short time on the topic of their choosing. TFA generally conducts these interviews in a place with a white board and will provide everyone with dry erase markers to write on the board. A few people in my group were fancy and had prepared worksheets for the group or an experiment. I didn't do this; however, I later found out that a lot of people in the New Orleans corps had. The next part of my interview day consisted of a short group interview and problem solving session with the same group as during the sample lessons. As I remember, we were given a short prompt on the achievement gap and had to respond to written questions and then were asked to have a group discussion and answer oral questions. I think TFA was just looking for people who weren't afraid of participating and who didn't display any biases against minorities or the socioeconomically disadvantaged. After this, we were notified that the group portion of the interview had ended and asked to sign up for a time later on in the day for our individual interview. We were also given a classroom situation that we would be asked about in the individual interview. I can't remember exactly, but I think the classroom situation was one of the first portions of the individual interview. My recommendation on this would be to come up with as many solutions to the problems as possible. The interviewer is going to keep questioning your solution and posing hypotheticals that would make it impossible, so the more solutions you can come up with the better. After this, the interview moved on to more standard interview questions for the rest of the time. I do recall my interviewer being particularly emotionless and typing the entire time during the interview, which I was later told they are instructed to do. Basically, the entire time you are being interviewed a TFA staff member is filling out a huge rubric and depending on how you score determines whether or not you are offered a job.

Interview Question – My interviewer asked a lot of questions about what I would do or how I would respond in classroom scenarios. This is difficult to do when you have never set foot in a classroom. Just use what you think is good judgment and answer accordingly.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – Since TFA does not pay corps members (school districts do), the only thing you can really negotiate on is where you are placed or what grade/subject you are teaching.TFA tries to make it seem like corps members have no power to negotiate on these matters, but the reality is that you do. I was offered a placement in my least preferred area, but was able to negotiate to be placed in another area. I know several other people in my school who did the same.


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Teacher Interview

Teacher

I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Teach for America in November 2013.

Interview Details The initial process begins with an online application with areas specified for personal, educational, and professional information, as well as a few questions regarding interest in the organization. If you qualify for an interview, you're notified through email and are given some tips on how to best prepare for a phone interview. The phone interview is rather brief (about 25 minutes) and it feels somewhat rushed even though they try to stress that you take your time. The questions asked are based on what your responses are to their prompts. If you are selected after the phone interview, you move along to a group session in which you meet with TFA teachers and administrators. During this part of the process, there are group activities and prompts to go through. More cuts are made after this point.

Interview Question – How have you handled issues with coworkers in previous positions?   View Answer


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Teacher Interview

Teacher

Interviewed at Teach for America

Interview Details 30 min phone interview intially - fairly standard questions, next step was half day in person interview where you had to present a practice 5 minute lesson plan, and participate in a group discussion observed by interviewers, and then a one on one interview with a teach for america staff member

Interview Question – nothing too difficult or unexpected   Answer Question


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Corps Member Interview

Corps Member

Interviewed at Teach for America

Interview Details The process has three rounds. Application, Telephone Interview, Group interview. The questions focus on your ability to be a team player and your ability to work with others in various situations.

Interview Question – We were given a scenario that could occur in the school and how you would handle that case   Answer Question


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

TFA Corps Member Interview

TFA Corps Member
Madison, WI (US)

I applied online - interviewed at Teach for America in January 2010.

Interview Details Very interesting interview process. They ask you questions that get down to 1) your leadership qualities and experiences, 2) your organizational skills, and 3) your cultural competency. Each of them is hard to fake while you're in the interview, because it's hard to answer competently unless you can actually own it in real life as well.

Interview Question – The sample teach can be the most challenging part of the interview day for many, and most of the sample lessons I saw were pretty bad.   View Answer

Negotiation Details – Really easy. They basically tell you where you're going and you accept or decline.

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