INTERVIEW WITH LUCIE DALUISO
Divisional managing director for further education at Reed
We spoke to Lucie Daluiso, Divisional Managing Director for Further Education at Reed, to lean on her considerable experience as to the best ways that candidates can secure and then prepare for an interview in further education (FE).
The CV is first up on the agenda. The purpose of a CV is to whet the employer’s appetite, marking you out as a serious contender for an FE position. The must-haves of the CV, therefore, have not really changed over the years, according to Lucie. “It’s still essential to include up-to-date contact information, your core competencies, as well as education and work experience,” she explains.
In addition, she states that candidates must ensure that “the core skills and experience listed relate to the specific job you’re applying for”. It is also very important “to highlight those most pertinent to the role first to catch the eye of the hiring manager”.
Although cover letters may now be rare within the FE sector, this is not to say you won’t one day need one. In a similar way to the CV, you should ensure that “the experience listed is relevant to the specific job advert and take time to research the establishment you are applying for to signify why you want to work there, over anywhere else”.
Although this checklist may very well apply for any application, Lucie says that “for further education specifically, it would be beneficial to include a personal statement highlighting your further education experience, competency and ability to undertake the role you are applying for”.
She adds: “I would advise not being too ‘academic’ as your personality is useful to shine through.” It is also worth considering a few examples of achievements and progression rates within previous FE roles when writing a CV, Lucie says. “It’s extremely easy to get lost in listing every little detail but remember, the main specifics should already be on your CV.”
Finally, you can effectively demonstrate your commitment to the FE profession by ensuring you provide any details of membership to any professional bodies as their inclusion will highlight your involvement in the industry.
It was once said by American polymath Benjamin Franklin that by “by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail” and this is abundantly true in terms of interview prep. Lucie explains that, once an interview at an FE college has been secured, candidates should initially focus their attentions on thoroughly researching the establishment they are interviewing with. To do so effectually, you should carefully examine the courses on offer, student intake, achievements and accolades, Ofsted reports and unique selling points. Knowledge is power after all.
“Some colleges even have interview questions already listed on their website, so it’s always best to have a look and use those as a baseline to prepare,” she asserts. On a side note, but certainly from an extension of the preparation perspective, Lucie also recommends that you should “find out a little bit about the panel who you will be interviewing with and their roles within the establishment”, if and where possible.
For those applying for a lecturing role, it is a very real possibility that candidates must prepare for a micro teach session. This is designed to act as an opportunity for a candidates to showcase their teaching skills, knowledge and understanding to a potential employer.
Should this be the case, Lucie’s recommendation is to “keep it recent and relevant to the topic set and concentrate more on your delivery to ensure that the subject matter is understood, confirming learner engagement and attention”.
Timing is key as there is only a short window to deliver the micro teach. “These are not usually longer than 15 minutes,” she states “so it is important to be able to keep to the lesson plan which would usually be requested by the panel at the end”.
Preparation then gives way to practice. Nerves are a normal part of the micro teach experience so it is very much recommended to run through your micro teach and interview answers “until you feel confident enough to handle any curveballs thrown your way on the day”.
“Think about your experience so far, what it taught you, and how the topic has progressed since your research has been conducted. All of these will prove your refined knowledge in the area.”
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