Transitioning to a new job might be difficult, but you can prepare for the interview to show that you’re the best candidate for the position.
Are you thinking about changing careers and becoming an instructional coach? Every teacher, as well as aspiring coaches, deserves to be coached. While there are many tools available to assist you in preparing for an interview, here are some questions to keep in mind, as well as the types of questions you’ll be asked.
What Is an Instructional Coach and What Do They Do?
An instructional coach assists instructors in improving the quality of their classes as well as the education of their pupils. They act as mentors and role models, assisting instructors in staying current and incorporating the most up-to-date practices and technology into their classrooms.
But first, ask yourself if your thinking is prepared—prepared. The prospect of leaving the classroom may be nerve-wracking, thrilling, and, for some, guilt-inducing. Are you ready to walk into that interview knowing you’re the best candidate for the job?
Consider your attitude. Put an end to your negative self-talk. Make a list of the many experiences and skills you offer to this role. Don’t compare yourself to others—you’re unique, and you know deep down that you’re ready, so trust your instincts. Let’s get started now that you’ve got your head in the game.
Interview Questions You’ll Be Asked
1. What motivates you to pursue a career as an instructional coach?
What is the “why” behind your actions? Your response demonstrates how well you understand what an instructional coach does and does not do. Understanding what coaches do can help you better express why you’re doing what you’re doing.
Coaches successfully increase teaching and learning, give a deeper level of transformational change, develop trust-based relationships to create capacity, and provide a customized kind of professional development.
“Have you coached before?” you can be asked as a follow-up question. Describe how your teaching and learning have changed as a result of this mentoring connection.”
2. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
In addition to your expertise, the panel wants to gain a deeper sense of who you are. Are you a problem-solver by nature? Do you love forming bonds with others? Inform them. They’d want to get a deeper sense of your personality and how you connect with others. What would it be like to have you on campus, and how would you handle certain circumstances (which will be detailed below)?
Even if you’re apprehensive, it’s critical to be confident while speaking about yourself. Rather than urging yourself to remain calm, try to become enthused! This is referred to as cognitive reappraisal by Natalia Autenrieth—on a physiological level, enthusiasm and worry are the same sensations. Change your worried energy to one of exhilaration.
3. How do your qualifications and experiences match up with a role as an instructional coach?
It’s a common misperception that becoming a coach necessitates being an expert. That simply isn’t the case. Your teaching abilities, views, and experience are all instructive. What are some of the things you’re already doing that relate to the function of a coach? Perhaps you’re in charge of a class. The partnership method is encouraged by Jim Knight, the godfather of all things relating to instructional coaching. Do you already utilize this strategy while teaching in groups or working with coworkers?
4. What do you believe an instructional coach’s typical day looks like?
“Average?” is the best response to this question. There is no such thing as a typical day. Flexibility is important, but it also means that a coach’s duties are aligned. Data coach, resource provider, mentor, curriculum specialist, instructional specialist, classroom supporter, learning facilitator, school leader, catalyst for change, and learner are among the ten positions taught by Joellen Killion. Familiarize yourself with them because you will most likely encounter at least a handful of them every day.
5. How can you establish a foundation of trust in your teacher relationships?
It’s all about trust. It indicates that your coaching connection is kept secret. It entails being up and being present, as well as a genuine desire to assist instructors in improving their teaching skills. Remember to go slow to move fast, listen to the request in the complaint, assume positive intentions, and use effective listening to create and maintain excellent relationships with teachers.
6. How would you approach a teacher who refuses to be coached?
Your response demonstrates how you approach teaching and deal with criticism. In actuality, you will come across a few instructors and administrators that are opposed to coaching. Do not feel obligated to justify defensive coaching. Begin by identifying the instructional coaching mission, vision, and purpose. What role do you envision yourself playing as a coach in bringing that goal to life daily? It’s important to remember that coaching relationships take time to form.
7. What coaching talents do you believe you have?
This is a question where you may highlight your skills, which is also how you should approach your prospective coaches. Start by talking about what you’ve taught; having specialized topic expertise can help you stand out. Communication skills are important for creating connections, according to Amy MacCrindle and Jacquie Duginske. They are essential to coaching to improve teaching and learning, and they are oriented toward the needs of students.
Make sure you’re aware of the procedures and structures that facilitate learning, as well as the questions to ask. You’ll be increasing teacher capacity, which will necessitate your ability to identify outstanding teacher leaders, perhaps in areas where you aren’t strong. Continue to educate yourself! Inquire with the panel about how you will be encouraged to continue studying.
8. What are your thoughts on dealing with adult learners?
Dealing with adult learners differs from working with youngsters, according to Malcolm Knowles. It’s critical to define at least a couple of these distinctions, as well as how you may use what you’ve learned. Adults have a wealth of life experience that may be utilized as a valuable resource.
Adults also want new information to be instantly applied to their jobs. Make a point of ensuring that your delivery is practical. Adult learning theory suggests that adults may have preconceived notions. Make it clear that you’re fine with it and that you’re interested in learning more about them.
Adults often expect new knowledge to be quickly useful to their day-to-day activities. Make a plan to make your presentation realistic. Adult learning theory brings out that adults may have preconceived notions. Let them know you’re fine with it and that you’re interested in learning more about them.
9. Would you want to ask us any questions?
This is an opportunity to refocus if you faltered on a prior question, as well as to explain or expand on your previous arguments. Keep in mind that you’re also interviewing your interviewers. Make certain that you feel at ease in this environment. “If I were in this position, what is your top recommendation for me to be successful?” is my number one walk-away question. Assume the position of interviewer and Listen.
About the article
An instructional coach assists instructors in improving the quality of their classes as well as the education of their pupils. They act as mentors and role models, assisting instructors in staying current and incorporating the most up-to-date practices and technology into their classrooms. In this article, we discussed the 9 questions you’ll be asked at an instructional coach interview.