1. Why do you want to work with us as Counselor?

I have always been impressed by the name of XYZ College and have heard a lot about how you deliver quality education with matchless standards, which is why I would like to join your winning team.

2. What goals do you have for this position?

Stability, to meet specific objectives, to offer educational opportunities to student s and their families, to represent the mission of the school.

3. Are you passionate about this career?

I am passionate about this career because I enjoy communicating to others the possibilities of a great career and what they can look forward to in their future ahead of them. I thrive on seeing the excitement that I can bring to others with effective communication and making sure that the potential student is confident in their decision.

4. Tell me how do you deal with conflict?

Well, being an admirer of the cooperative model by Deutsch, I usually negotiate with the individual until he or she is willing to cooperate. In advanced cases I occasionally take the competitive approach which I feel is sometimes needed to bring up the candidate's level of interest.

5. Why do you want a career as an Admissions Counselor?

I worked with students for many years and get a kick out of helping them. I also enjoyed meeting with their parents and helping them with questions about college.

6. Prepare a 5-10 minute presentation that you would deliver to a group of first-year students. Role-play how you would conduct a resume review during an appointment. Bring something to show the committee evidence of your greatest professional strength.?

Only one university asked me these hands-on questions, but they were the most fun to answer because they allowed me to truly demonstrate my strengths and skills, rather than just talking about them. For these hands-on questions, I drew heavily from the knowledge and experience that I had gained in my career services internship, and I even brainstormed with my internship supervisors about how I could best showcase my strengths.

7. What are your views on group counseling? How do you handle confidentiality issues while group counseling?

I am a big fan of group counseling and I believe it is a very effective counseling technique, however, after every group session, the counselor typically offers one to one sessions if requested. Matters of confidential nature can easily be handled via such individual sessions.

8. What ideas do you have for reaching out to first-year students?
How would you engage faculty with the work that we do in Career Services?
How might you streamline the appointment-scheduling process in our office?

These "what-if" questions asked me to imagine what kind of innovation I might bring to the position. They were the most difficult for me because they forced me to put my ideas out on a limb with only limited knowledge of what the department and position was like. I found that research was my most important ally in imagining how I would contribute to a position I didn't yet have. I scoured university and department websites for every piece of information I could find about their work and values. That gave me the information I needed to articulate how I could contribute.

9. What experience do you have delivering presentations or workshops?
Tell us about your experiences working with diverse students.
What would you do if you had worked with a student for a few sessions, but he or she never completed the out-of-session homework that you assigned?
What techniques have you used to conduct labor market research?
What are the first steps you take when advising students on their career path?

Experience-based questions asked me to consider how my previous experience related to the current position, and they formed the bulk of my interview questions. Just like I teach my students, I prepared for these questions by creating STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) stories about every task on the job description. To be clear, I did not write out my example stories word-for-word - at least not after that first interview - but I did write bullet points so that I wouldn't forget the key details.

10. Delivery of Comprehensive School Counseling Program Based Interview Questions:

► What is your experience with implementation of the school counseling core curriculum?
► How would you approach individual student planning?
► How do you develop a positive relationship with students in individual counseling? Small group counseling?
► How would you handle a large group of students having attendance problems?
► What experiences have you had with developing transition plans?
► Describe how you would implement small group counseling/classroom lessons?
► What might your professional development plan look like?

Download Interview PDF

11. Foundation of Comprehensive School Counseling Program Based Interview Questions:

► How does a comprehensive school counseling program support the school's academic mission?
► What is your school counseling/educational philosophy?
► What is the counseling theory or approach that you most closely follow?

12. Post-High School Planning Based Interview Questions:

• Of all the areas that are handled by a high school counselor which is the area that you feel strongest in? In which area do you think you need the greatest improvement? (e.g. College, career, crisis intervention, special education services, financial aid, student scheduling. academic improvement).
• What is your plan for improvement in this area?
• How do feel about writing letters of recommendation (HS)?
• What methods would you use to help a student make the decision regarding higher education, vocational training or joining the work force? How would you involve the parents in this decision?
• What are your plans for increasing your familiarity with various colleges over the next three years?
• What experience have you had with the college admissions process? If a student were planning on applying to "inappropriate" schools, what would you tell him?

13. Scheduling/Time Management Based Interview Questions:

• Because time is a scarce resource in schools today, and because of a strong push for improved standardized test scores, best educational practices suggest that in-class guidance lessons not take away from classroom instructional minutes. How will you address this issue as a school counselor?
• How would you divide your time between meeting the immediate needs of the students and keeping up with the paperwork?
• What do you do with a student who stops you on the way to lunch or comes in without an appointment?

14. Counselor Role Specific Interview Questions:

► What do you like about working with (elementary/middle/high school) students?
► How is your role different from that of a social worker, mental health counselor, or school psychologist?
► How much experience do you have with LGBT students?
► What has been your experience with special education students?
► Describe the profile of an at-risk student.
► How do you manage cultural differences in a school setting?
► Describe your experience with group counseling.
► Talk about the difference between a 504 plan and an IEP plan.
► What situations might call for a behavior management plan?
► Recall a time you resolved a problem with a difficult parent.
► In what ways do you balance the needs of students, parents, and school administrators?
► In what ways have you helped students cope with grief, loss, or mental health issues?
► What factors would you consider before recommending an outside agency referral?
► In what ways have you coordinated efforts with other school specialists towards a common goal?
► How do you keep up with current trends or news in the field of guidance counseling?

15. Accountability of Comprehensive School Counseling Program Based Interview Questions:

► How will you evaluate your school counseling program?
► What type of data would demonstrate an effective school counseling program?
► What do the most recent state standardized test results indicate about this school district and this school; and what is your role regarding standardized testing?

16. Roles and Relationships Based Interview Questions:

• How would you deal with student/teacher personality conflicts?
• How would you go about establishing a working relationship with counselors and faculty?
• How would you go about identifying students who are at risk?
• How would you work with a student whose parents come in and tells you the kid is having problems but don't tell him I told you?
• If you can't make a parental contact during the day, what procedure would you follow?
• What are your thoughts on encouraging parental involvement in the counseling process?
• What are your views on confidentiality? What sort of information do you consider confidential? To the student? To the faculty? To the parents? To prospective employers? To the college admissions office?
• What do you think the role of the counselor is in preventing school violence?
• What experiences have you had in working with special education students?
• When considering ethical standards and school policies, how would you handle a conflict between the two?

17. Leadership Based Interview Questions:

► How do you see the word "leader" fitting in to your role as a school counselor?
► What leadership experiences have you had?
► How have you advocated for students?
► How do school counselors advocate for students differently than other school staff?

18. Role of School Counselor Based Interview Questions:

► What do you see as the main role of a school counselor?
► Have you implemented any components of the ASCA National Model for School Counseling?
► What do you think is the most important characteristic of a school counselor?
► When considering school counseling ethical standards and school policies, how would you handle a conflict between the two?
► What do you think the role of the school counselor is in preventing school violence?
► What can you provide that is different from a social worker, school psychologist, or mental health counselor?
► What is the difference between a therapist and a school counselor?
► What does your future comprehensive school counseling program look like? What is your plan for achieving this?

19. Collaboration Based Interview Questions:

► What is the role of the school counselor in relation to teachers, parents, administrators and other counselors?
► How would you handle an irate parent?
► How would you handle a passive or uninvolved parent?
► How do you see yourself fitting in with school counselors who have many years experience as veteran teachers?
► What is your view on collaborative consultation in the schools?
► Describe past interactions with parents in home visits.
► How do you handle conflict with a colleague, parent, administrator?

20. Counselor Behavioral Interview Questions:

• What was the most challenging professional situation you've encountered and how did you handle it? Were you prepared to handle this situation? In hindsight, would you have handled this situation any differently?
• Describe a time when you faced a stressful situation that demonstrated your coping skills.
• Tell me about a time when you had too many things to do and were required to prioritize your tasks.
• What is your typical way of dealing with conflict? Give me an example.
• Tell me about a difficult decision you've made in the last year.
• Give me an example of when you showed initiative and took the lead.
• Give me an example of when you motivated others.
• Describe a situation that best demonstrates your ability to be flexible and adapt to a new situation.
• Give me an example of a time when you identified a problem, gathered information, and recommended a solution.

21. Counselor What Would You Do If:

► One of your students told you she was pregnant?
► You suspected one of your students is being abused?
► One of your students talks to you about wanting to kill himself/herself?
► One of your students tells you they are being abused?
► A student requests a teacher change because he/she doesn't like them?
► A parent requests you to switch their child's teacher?
► A student requests to be in the same lunch period as their friend?
► You suspect one of your students is abusing drugs/alcohol?
► One of your students admits to being sexually active?
► One of your students told you he/she is gay?
► One of your student's parents is terminally ill?
► Your student does not get into their number one college choice?
► One of your students wants to drop out of school?
► You overhear the makings of a fight that is about to happen?
► One of your seniors is not going to graduate?
► A parent asks to meet with you at 5 p.m. because that is the only time he/she can get off of work?
► You see one of your students (or parents) in town?
► One of your students continues to fail math (or any subject) each quarter?
► You have a faculty member's child in your caseload?

22. Personal Qualities Based Interview Questions:

• How do you handle criticism?
• How do you handle stress?
• How do you keep yourself organized? Discuss how you multitask.
• How do you see the word "leader" fitting in to your role as a counselor?
• If I had observed you how would I know that you're the right person for us to hire?
• What are your strengths or weaknesses?
• What do you bring to this position that is unique?
• What do you think is the most important characteristic of a counselor?
• What evidence could you provide of your commitment?
• What is it that you like about (level) school students/clients?
• Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
• Why did you choose counseling as a career?
• Tell us what you know about XYZ School/Organization? What makes you want to work at our School/Organization?
• What is the most appealing aspect of counseling to you? What is the least appealing aspect?

23. Management of Comprehensive School Counseling Program Based Interview Questions:

► How do you use data in a school counseling program?
► What type of school counseling activities would you institute to help close the achievement gap at our school?
► What innovative and new ideas would you like to employ as a school counselor?
► How would you divide your time between meeting the immediate needs of the students and keeping up with the paperwork?
► What technology applications do you see being useful in your work?

24. Competencies Based Interview Questions:

• How do you know when to refer a student/client to another professional?
• How would you deal with an unmotivated student/client (to raise their expectations)?
• How would you handle an irate parent or client?
• How would you handle serious personal problems revealed to you through counseling? i.e. drugs, alcohol, sexual identity.
• If you suspected child abuse towards one of your students/clients, what would you do?

25. Strengths and Interests Based Interview Questions:

► What influenced you to be a school counselor?
► What practical experiences have you had that make you feel capable of being a school counselor?
► What is your strongest asset?
► What do you know about our school that you would consider a strength? a weakness?
► Tell us about a successful (satisfying) case that you have handled? And, one that was not so successful; what would you have done differently?
► What makes you want to work at ______ School?
► What is it that you like about working with (grade level) school students?
► How would you deal with cultural differences in a school setting?
► What is something new you could bring to our program?
► How do you handle criticism?
► How do you handle stress?
► Are you available to work in the evenings for functions such as parent programs, student programs, etc.?
► What experiences have you had in working with special education students?
► What has your experience been in working with students of color & gay, lesbian, bisexual and/or transgendered students?
► What is your experience with parenting programs?
► How do you approach writing letters of recommendation (HS)?
► What does school counseling mean to you?
► How do you keep yourself organized? Discuss how you multitask.
► Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
► Are you proficient in a language other than English?

Download Interview PDF

26. GENERAL COUNSELING Interview Questions:

• Describe your previous experience. How will it help you in this position?
• Can you give us some examples of where you have displayed initiative as a counselor?
• Tell us about any special projects that you've done.
• What are your thoughts on group work or group counseling? What kinds of groups are you prepared to handle? How would you handle confidentiality?
• What experiences have you had that make you feel capable of being a counselor?
• What has been your most rewarding experience?
• What have you done in the area of career counseling?
• What have you done to keep abreast of current practices in counseling & psychology?
• What is the counseling theory that you most closely follow?
• What is the most creative and innovative counseling technique you have used?
• What kind of records do you keep of your counseling sessions?
• What might your professional development plan look like?
• What new programs have you initiated?
• What technology applications do you see being useful in your work?
• What was the name of the student/client who had the greatest impact on during your internship? Tell us a little about the situation.

27. Roles and Responsibilities Based Interview Questions:

• Are you opposed to working above and beyond business hours to get the job done?
• During the year there are some busy times and some slow times. What types of things would you do during the slow times?
• How do you foster a good working relationship with clients, staff, counselors and administrators?
• How do you handle conflict with a colleague, parent, or administrator?
• How do you see group work being fit into the day?

28. What are your greatest strengths and weaknesses?
In what type of working environment do you thrive?
What do you like to do for fun outside work?
What makes you laugh?

These questions asked me to demonstrate my capacity for self-reflection and offered the opportunity to showcase how I "fit" within the department's culture. Reflective Questions are similar to Experience Questions in that they can best be answered with an engaging story, so I prepared for them similarly: by creating STAR stories and doing research.

29. How would you define the difference between coaching, counseling, and advising? Which theories do you use in career counseling? What technology-based resources have been most helpful in your work with students?

These questions asked me to draw on my knowledge about the field of career counseling. Because I was finishing graduate school and interning at a university career center throughout the interview process, my knowledge about current trends in career services was fresh; however, preparing for these questions could require some research if you had spent a few years away from the field.

30. What do you know about this college and degrees offered here?

Do your homework on this one! Familiarize yourself with degrees offered by targeted college and prerequisites for each.

31. What Made You Want to Become a Guidance Counselor?

In the education field, motivation is an important factor for interviewers. They will want to understand what is attractive for you about this job. Steer clear of focusing on summer vacations and other perks of working at a school. Be prepared to talk about what you hope to get out of the job, in terms of helping students to be successful and happy. This question really lends itself well to examples from your own life. Whether you had a guidance counselor who really excelled or one who failed you, undoubtedly your experience working with them will have led in some way to your choice to enter this field. You may want to explain why you want to work in education, and then expand into why you chose counseling over teaching or a similar area.

32. Share one of your rewarding experiences while working in the field?

In the field of admission counseling, every case is rewarding, mention any one of your choice, but build your answer in a way so as to highlight your job specific skills.

33. What in Your Job or Life Experience Makes You More Qualified for This Job than Your Peers?

The truth is that the single most important qualification for a guidance counselor is a degree and certification. School boards have requirements that must be met in order to qualify for the position.
As a result, you can expect that everyone else who will be interviewed for the role will have the same kind of educational background that you have. Most interviewers will want to know what makes you a better choice.
A great guidance counselor will have experience working with students from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds. Experience in the working world outside of the bubble of education can make you better at helping students recognize their own interests, and should be a focus in your answer. Experience in extracurricular activities while you were a student including working part time, participating in sports and clubs and activities outside of school all make you more well-rounded, and a better role model for your students.

34. What experience have you had with college aged students? How do you think it will help you as an admissions counselor?

If you have relevant experience, go ahead and flaunt it! If you don't have it, do not worry. Mention any volunteer work that involved working with youth or any campaigns or co curricular activities you participated in, or trained your juniors in as a student.

35. How do you evaluate students?

I would evaluate students based on the fact finding questions I would ask to find out their interest are and what their goals they have for their future. With the information the student has given me, I would be able to help guide them in the right direction.

36. How well do you know our institute?

Other than being a Graduate of the University and the knowledge that one would attain over the years rather it be through recreational situation or academic excellence as far as the ratings of professor putting all that knowledge aside I would say I pretty broad understanding of the University's major academic programs.

37. Tell us about your educations?

Ma in applied sociology, trained to evaluate and survey community organizations.

38. What is your biggest weakness as Counselor?

This is known as a negative question, one that interviewers love asking to test your ability to stay cool. We all have weaknesses. Let's face it, we're not all perfect. But that doesn't mean that yours should get in the way of your dream job. Think about how you can spin your weaknesses into something positive.
Look at the job description to hand and choose one required responsibility you feel you could improve on. Are you shy about making public presentations? Does your time management need a little work? Do you feel you would benefit from Microsoft Office training?
An example of the answer can be (depending on your weakness): "I am aware that my skills with Microsoft Excel and Powerpoint are not up to advanced level but this is something that I'm working on by teaching myself in my spare time."
Avoid being a perfectionist or simply saying, "I have no weaknesses I know of." This only makes you look arrogant and overconfident.

39. Why should I hire you as Counselor?

This question is all about selling yourself. Why should someone hire you? Are you brilliant at organization? Are you proficient at Microsoft Office with excellent use of Powerpoint and Excel? Are you creative and do you really think you could add value to the company?
By looking at the job description that was given to you, try to point out your strengths by using examples of work you've done in relation to the requirements for this role.
One way of answering this question is: "I believe that I meet the requirements listed in your job description and I feel that I will really excel in this role because I particularly enjoy working for you."
Again, adapt this question to suit the role you are applying for. Be enthusiastic in your answer. Be positive and confident. If you cannot convince yourself that you'd be perfect for the role, you will never be able to convince the person who is considering whether to hire you.

40. What do you know about this university? Why did you apply for this position? What do you expect will be the greatest challenges and rewards of this job?

Research questions asked me to draw on my knowledge about the positions, departments, and universities where I applied. As the name suggests, I prepared for these questions by doing extensive research, which included researching university websites, reading news articles written about the universities, and reaching out to contacts who worked there. Just as important, I used the information that I gleaned from this research to highlight my qualifications for the positions.

Download Interview PDF

41. How Would You Handle a Student Reporting Abuse by a Parent?

No one said being a guidance counselor would be easy. You are required to maintain certain confidentialities for your students, but allegations of abuse must be taken seriously. Although you are bound by law to report abuse to the appropriate authorities, remember that every school is different, and there may be protocols to follow.
If you are asked any questions of this nature, first explain that you would go to your direct supervisor and review school policy to ensure you are balancing your legal obligations with school rules. Don't forget to address how you would console and help the student immediately while they're in your care, in addition to the actions you would take once they leave your office. Perhaps you will keep tissues and doodads on your desk to help the student feel more comfortable while they're speaking with you. Think about the question before answering and keep your focus on what is best for the student.