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Traditional Interview


Traditional Interviews are the most common type of interviewing. The interview consists of a series of questions that may or may not be standardized. In addition to responding to questions, you would be expected to ask articulate, well-formed questions. The best preparation for this is to research the employer and industry prior to the interview.

The traditional job interview uses broad-based questions such as, "why do you want to work for this company," and "tell me about your strengths and weaknesses."

Structure of a Traditional Interview

Usually 5-7 minutes. This is the time when the interviewer greets you. "Small talk" often occurs at this point and is done to relax you before getting into the actual interview. Be prepared for "small talk" from the moment you are greeted by an interviewer.

5-7 minutes in length. This portion is designed to give you information about the employer. The responsibilities of the position are detailed in this part of the interview.

The longest portion of the interview. This often lasts between 15-20 minutes. This is the part of the interview where you get to sell yourself. Discuss your abilities, skills, and the contributions that you can make to the employer. The interviewer most often asks the majority of the questions during this part of the interview. Review Common Interview Questions and Interview Responses.


During the last 5-7 minutes of the interview is your opportunity to ask questions (see Questions You Can Ask).Never say that you do not have any questions. At this point, it is a good time to ask about the next step in the interviewing process. At the end, always smile and shake hands with the interviewer. Do not forget to thank the interviewer for the time spent talking with you. Get a business card! You will want to send a Thank you Letter within 3 days.

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Eastern Illinois University
1301 Human Services
Charleston, IL 61920

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