Interviewing School Counselors
The following questions are designed to help you think about and prepare for your school counselor position interview. These are actual questions sent in by school counselors after an interview.
How do you see the word "leader" fitting in to your role as a school counselor?
What is the role of the school counselor in relation to teachers, parents, administrators and other school counselors?
What do you see as the main role of a school counselor?
What influenced you to be a school counselor?
What is the counseling theory or approach that you most closely follow?
What is the most creative and innovative counseling technique you have used?
What innovative and new ideas would you like to employ as a school counselor?
How would you divide your time between meeting the immediate needs of the students and keeping up with the paperwork?
How are school personnel affected by working in a rural vs. urban setting (where there are more or less resources)? Describe your personal experience.
How will you evaluate your programs to meet (a) current state standards, (b) standards of best practice for a comprehensive school counseling program; and (c) the ASCA National Model?
How would you handle an irate parent?
How would you handle a passive (perhaps irresponsible) parent?
How would you handle a large group of students having attendance problems?
How do you see yourself fitting in with school counselors who have many years experience as veteran teachers?
How would you fit in with a large staff?
What is your strongest asset?
What do you think is the most important characteristic of a school counselor?
What do you see as the role of a school counselor in a school this large?
What do you know about our school that you would consider a strength? A weakness?
What makes you want to work at this school?
What is it that you like about working with (grade level) school students?
What is something new you could bring to our program?
How do you handle criticism?
How do you handle stress?
Are you opposed to working above and beyond school hours to get the job done?
Are you opposed to working at night for functions such as college night, senior night, etc.?
What is your experience with 504 accommodation plans?
What experiences have you had with transition plans?
How would you deal with cultural differences in a school setting?
Does your principal know you're applying for this job and how does he/she feel about it?
What technology applications do you see being useful in your work?
What might your professional development plan look like?
What do you think the role of the school counselor is in preventing school violence?
What practical experiences have you had that make you feel capable of being a school counselor?
What experiences have you had in working with special education students?
What can you provide that is different from a social worker, school psychologist or mental health counselor?
When considering ethical standards and school policies, how would you handle a conflict between the two?
What do the most recent state standardized test results indicate about this school district and this school, and what is your role regarding standardized testing?
How does a school counselor assist with the implementation of English as second language) in-building programming?
Describe how you would implement small group counseling/guidance lessons.
Because time is a scarce resource in schools today and because of a strong push for improved standardized test scores, best educational practices suggest that in-class guidance lessons not take away from classroom instructional minutes. How will you address this issue as a school counselor?
What has your experience been in working with minority students and LGBTQ students?
What is the difference between a therapist and a school counselor?
What is your view on collaborative consultation in the schools?
Tell us about a successful (satisfying) case that you have handled. Tell us about one that was not so successful; what would you have done differently?
What is your experience with parenting programs?
Describe past interactions with parents in home visits.
What does your future comprehensive program look like? What is your plan for achieving this?
How do you handle conflict with a colleague, parent, administrator?
How do feel about writing letters of recommendation?
How do you keep yourself organized? Discuss how you multitask.
Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
Can we ask you a question in Spanish, and can you respond likewise?
Would you be interested in heading any extracurricular activities (i.e., club advisor)?
What does schol counseling mean to you?
Are there some things or information that should not be shared with others, such as students, parents or administrators?
What skills do you currently possess that would help you be successful right away as a high school counselor?
What would you do if:
One of your students told you she was pregnant?
You suspected one of your students is being abused?
One of your students tells you he/she is being abused?
A student requests a teacher change because he/she doesn't like the teacher?
A parent ask you to switch his/her child's teacher?
A student asks to be in the same lunch period as a particular friend?
You suspect one of your students is abusing drugs/alcohol?
One of your students admits to being sexually active?
A student's parent is terminally ill?
Your student does not get into his/her number one college choice?
One of your students wants to drop out of high school?
You overhear the makings of a fight that is about to happen?
One of your seniors is not going to graduate?
A parent asks to meet with you at 5 p.m. because that is the only time he/she can get off of work?
You see one of your students (or parents) in town?
One of your students continues to fail math (or any subject ) each quarter?
You have a faculty member's child in your caseload?
One of your students talks to you about wanting to commit suicide?
One of your students told you he/she is gay?
If you were going to implement the ASCA National Model here next year, what would you do first?
Reprinted with permission, www.schoolcounselor.com
Looking for example answers to these questions? Consider reading "School Counseling Principles:
Foundations and Basics."
This book serves as a ready reference for advancing a common understanding of the rapidly evolving school counseling profession. Its purpose is to help school counselors, school counseling students, educators, administrators and other school counseling stakeholders best converge on the most highly agreed upon responses to common professional questions. In this compilation, experts respond to frequently asked questions regarding school counseling as a career, collaboration, credentials, ethical and legal issues, guidance and counseling issues, counseling-related legislation, school counselor performance, research, school counselor roles and responsibilities, counseling technology and school counselor training.