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Career Services Center

Ward Edwards 1200
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660.543.4985
Fax: 660.543.4668


Interviewing Tips for International Students

  • Enhance communication skills by:
    • talking and speaking up in class
    • making presentations
    • making friends and talking with Americans
    • taking communication courses for credit
    • attending workshops at the Career Center
    • joining and participating in multinational clubs
    • watching television
    • reading newspapers and academic publications

  • Study commonly asked interview questions, write answers to those questions, and practice those responses in front of a mirror as well as with friends.
  • Schedule a practice interview with Career Services to receive feedback on interview skills.


U.S. Interview

International Interview

Be punctual. Arrive 5 to 15 minutes prior to appointment.

Personal relationships may be more important than time. Being late may not be a problem.

Eye contact is expected and shows confidence.

Eye contact, especially with persons of higher status, may be disrespectful.

Interviewer styles vary. May begin with direct questions or minimal small talk.

Interviewers commonly start with small talk and look for information regarding character or personality.

Interviewer may do most of the talking or may expect the candidate to do most of the talking.

Interviewer may talk for the majority of the interview.

Questions regarding age, race, gender, and marital status are illegal.

Age, race, gender, or marital status may be issues in the interview. Males may be expected to dominate interactions with females. Younger people may be expected to show deference to older people.

Expect direct questions regarding competency, experience

Indirect questions regarding competency, experience

Open discussion of accomplishments and skills shows confidence.

Citing accomplishments and skills might be considered boastful, self-serving, or too individualistic.

Show clear self knowledge, career goals and long-term plans NOTE: It may be important to be flexible, however, to initially obtain employment.

Jobs may be assigned by government or family. Questioning one's role in a company may be seen as disloyal. Companies sometimes assign work and expect individuals to accept what is available.

Interviewer may expect immediate competency and look at each new employee for a 2 to 5 year commitment.

Interviewer may not expect immediate competence and instead be looking for a long-term employee.

Self-disclosure of strengths, weaknesses, personality, leadership style, problem-solving abilities, etc. may be appropriate.

Personal questions regarding such issues might be considered an invasion of privacy.

Researching the organization and demonstrating that knowledge during the interview is expected.  It shows initiative and interest.

Researching an organization in advance may show too much initiative and independence.

Acceptable to ask an employer at the close of the interview where they are in the interview process and when the candidate can expect to hear back from them.

Asking an employer during an interview where they are in the interview process and when you can expect to hear back from them may be seen as too forward.

Inquiring about the status of an application after the interview is acceptable and demonstrates interest in the position.

Inquiring about the status of an application after the interview may be seen as rude.