1. Can you tell me something about yourself?

This does not mean your personal life. The interviewers do not want to know that you were born in chef field but grew up with your cat in scarborough. Tell them why you are passionate about the field of study you want to study in then tell them of any professional experience you have. Keep the answer relevant and concise; facts and figures are helpful for doing this.

2. Please tell me about your greatest strengths?

This is your time to shine! If you are asked this question, it gives you permission to go all out with listing your best skills but be careful how many skills you list. Reeling off a list of skills with no evidence will not impress the panel. Instead, focus on three or four skills that make you a great candidate and provide examples. You might be creative, a quick learner, flexible, hold great people and teamwork skills; whatever you are good at, let them know.

3. Tell me about your greatest weaknesses?

This is a tricky question to answer, nobody is perfect after all. Instead, state something which is (or was) a weakness but also explain the steps you have put in place to change this. You could always just provide weaknesses the interviewer already knows such as lacking a postgraduate qualification or state weaknesses that are not related to the course.

4. Tell me what are your career goals in post graduation?

If asked this question, it is important not to just state your career goals, you need to explain how you intend to succeed. Broad statements like 'wanting to become a specialist' are unmeasurable, instead you should state that you want to become a recognized leading expert in the field with several published works. The goals should be attainable within the next five years, although you may wish to elaborate further if appropriate.

5. Can you tell me about your philosophy in terms of work in post graduation?

There are many work philosophies that universities want to see. Motivation, focus, balancing, creativity and resourcefulness are often top of their lists though. Pick out two or three work ethics that you hold and give examples of when you have had to use them, for example, you may have used time creatively in your undergraduate years, balancing work with university.

6. Are you willing to apply for other courses as well?

Although it is tempting to say, "No, of course not, this is the only university I am interested in and I want to spend my dying days in its libraries", everyone knows this probably is not true and as such, it will not help you get on the course. Be honest, if you are looking at a few other courses, tell them, but be sure to say why this course is the best of the bunch.

7. Define what is post graduation?

You can undertake postgraduate study after you have completed a degree or have equivalent work experience. Postgraduate courses include Graduate Diploma, Master and PhD.

8. Why are you interested in this institution?

This is a popular question that universities ask you in entrance interviews. The key to answering it successfully is to match your answer with your application. Express your interest in the university based on your research. Explain how you are impressed with the successes and achievements of the department or a particular academic that will be involved on your course. Demonstrate your enthusiasm to study at the university and most importantly, explain how you trust it to be the best place to develop your experience and skills.

9. Why are you keen to do this course of post graduation?

Second on the list of top interview questions, answering it involves similar skills to the previous question. Think hard about your reasons for applying for a particular course, perhaps it s ai continuation of your undergraduate course or a development of your current career. Consider career aspirations and options at all times and ensure you give a clear idea of your reasons for applying. Prepare your answer for this question carefully as you can expect it to come up at every interview you attend.

10. Tell me what would be your dream job after completing post graduation?

Do not give a specific job title or position, you are asking for trouble if you do. Tell the university interview panel instead about a dream career, free from titles or companies. This makes it easier for the interviewer to understand what you want to do, as it allows them to create the job you want in their mind.

Download Interview PDF

11. What are the skills you have which can take you towards success?

In order to answer this question correctly you need to make sure you know the course profile and course content like the back of your hand. You need to know what is involved in the course, is it predominantly research based or are you required to complete practical work? When you know this you can match your skills to what is required. Do not be shy in reminding the interview panel what is required of students on the course and explain how your skills (which you have probably mentioned already by this point) match those prerequisites perfectly.

12. How do you plan to deal with irate and angry customers?

Any hotel or tourism institute worth its salt spends a lot of time teaching its students about dealing with tough customers. Checking your textbooks for answers is a good idea, but please do so before the interview takes place. If you know somebody in the industry, then it would be a good idea to speak to him or her and ask about how such situations are handled in the workplace. If you have time, then give an example or two about how you dealt with an angry or bad customer in the past with tact, politeness and firmness. Acknowledge that the approach taken with angry customers may depend on the style and formality of the institution, for example a five star hotel may have a different approach to a fast food cafe.

13. Tell me why you join the hotel and tourism sector?

There are two things that you can touch upon as an answer to this question. The first relates to the statistics regarding the sector. Tell your interviewers that it is a dynamic sector that is growing at a rapid pace and you want to be in the middle of the boom, the excitement and the energy. However, before saying so, make sure that you have the required data to support your claims. What is the growth rate of the industry? What is the size of the industry? When did the boom start? Who says there is a boom? Basically, doing your homework well is advised. The other aspect that you should always touch upon as an answer to this question is how you and your personality are well suited to this sector. Convince the interviewers that you are made for the industry and the industry is made for you. Talking about basic traits like people skills, patience, ability to work under pressure etc, which are prerequisites to succeeding in the hospitality and tourism sector and how you excel at all these, should constitute a good answer.

14. Suppose if you have been asked to plan a business meeting or a party for some clients. Tell me how will you go about the task?

Many interviewees, either due to anxiety, or because of the overconfidence that comes from being asked such a simple question, mess this up by missing out an important step of the process. Think this out carefully, remember everything that you have been taught or have done and then answer this question slowly and methodically, convincing your interviewers that you can handle a situation under pressure well. Attention to detail is key in this industry, as well as following a brief accurately.

15. Suppose if you were transport secretary then tell me what would be your policies for the next 3 years?

This question is set up to asses your knowledge of the industry that you are applying for. This is why it is important to read up on contemporary issues before the interview. It might be a good idea to describe a policy that is linked to the industry that you are working in, e.g. if you are applying to work for network rail then you may wish to comment of the plans to build a high speed rail link between Melbourne and Sydney. There is no wrong answer as long as you can justify your ideas. Name drop the current transport secretary and any of his proposals if possible, but try not to take a strong political stance.

16. Do you know what makes a good supply chain?

Aspects of a successful supply chain will include reliable and experienced producers, an established transport route that goes through economically and politically stable areas and forms of reliable transportation. Extend your answer to discuss the aspects of good distribution.

17. Tell me about your experience from your academic career which will help you to working in this sector?

This is a typical question which you will be asked when applying for a role that does not fit in directly with your academic career. The best way to approach a question like this is to highlight skills that you have gained that the employer will be interested in. Good ones for this role would be good communication skills, research skills, analytical skills, writing skills and presentation skills, all of which are transferable from many degree subjects.

18. Tell me What have you learned in your academic career that will benefit you for this job?

You will have to tailor your response to this question to the specific job role that you are applying for. Try and incorporate all aspects of your degree in your answer, so mention how you have developed your writing skills and communication skills as well as the specific scientific skills that you have gained. Even if you have only had limited exposure to a relevant technique, still mention it but explain that you will need further training. If you are missing a skill which is crucial to your new role emphasize your enthusiasm for learning new skills and your adaptability.

19. What original research you have conducted?

The first point you should make is to explain how the work is original, even if your example is where you have extended someone else?s research, explicitly explain why it is original. Impress upon the interviewer at each stage of your answer how you designed the research, as a creative capability will be an important part of your future career as a scientist. Show also how you planned your time and how the research you designed created results that would answer your research objective.

20. Tell me what is it about this field that interests you the most?

This question allows you to get a little bit of your personality across to the interviewer as well as describing your relationship with science. The subject of your answer is unimportant but it would benefit you to talk passionately. Good responses may be that you enjoy problem solving or discovering new information. To add depth to your answer you could describe how you have always had a relationship with science or describe your inspiration. Think carefully and research an answer that is appropriate to the role for which you are applying.

21. Describe an example of worked to a target?

With this question its best to give something that's non academic as that's the immediate thing that every graduate would think of. Work experience or something social at university would be best to refer to and try and think of a time when you exceeded expectation, not just met what was required. Examples could be in sport such as a target you set to be picked for a certain position or even for captain. Maybe it was to run for a certain post in a society with a plan to be promoted each year that you kept to. Remember, your interviewer will only look to dig deeper so try to cover as much detail as possible by being very specific, especially if it's a financial example as this will really impress. Assess yourself as to whether it was difficult to achieve were you the best in comparison to other people? If so, let them know.

22. Tell me did you spent anytime living abroad using your language skills?

Most applicants will have a good example of a long term stay abroad, if not you will have to make the most of any experience that you do have. Key points to bring out from your trip abroad are; show how you have used your language skills independently, try and use an example of when you have used your language skills in a working environment, and a social environment, and in a stressful situation. If you studied abroad highlight the importance of using your language skills in an academic environment. Each of these could be important in a career in languages.

23. Suppose if you are alone in the office and a client phones demanding instant advice, what do you do?

Let the client know that you are inexperienced and then do your best to advise them using the resources that you have available to you. Do not advise on anything you are really unsure about as you may be liable, an unsatisfied client would be preferable to a misinformed client. Give the client relevant contact details and reassure them that a colleague will be able to assist them fully very soon.

24. Suppose if three partners all came to you with work they wanted you to do by 5 pm that day then what would you do?

Do not take more work than you believe you can do. Explain the situation when you are letting somebody down, and explain that you would rather not let them down by accepting work that you did not have time to complete. Once you have said you will do something it is normally a good idea to follow through and do it. This answer will show to an interviewer that you have integrity and the confidence to use your communication skills.

Download Interview PDF

25. Tell me how would you deal with a difficult supplier?

A good approach would be to first give an example of when a supplier might be difficult before saying how you will deal with it. Then give an example of when you have done this in the past to confirm the point, even if not with a supplier but an instance of conflict in the workplace which you resolved. Key aspects of good communication skills when in a difficult situation are to be firm, honest and empathetic but remain assertive.