Sunday, December 16, 2007

First Interview

It's over and done with - I had my first real job interview in nearly 6 years on Friday and I cannot emphasize how happy I am to be done with it. And though it's over, I still feel like I could have done a better job.

I prepped for it ever since I heard I had been selected as a semi-finalist a little less than two weeks ago. I did two mock interviews, both of which reminded me exactly why I hate interviewing and being on the spot. Why can't my CV, writing samples, and recommendation letters speak in place of me? Why does this whole proces have to be so drawn out?

The questions I got asked were both predictable and unpredictable; by the end of the interview, which lasted 45 minutes, I was exhausted. My brain was kaputt and I definitely felt my energy level draining. Some of the questions I got asked included: 1) What were some of the challenging teaching experiences I faced? 2) What books would I recommend and why? 3) How do I gauge if students are learning the material I'm teaching? 4) How do I use historical documents as an archaeologist? 6) What is my larger cultural quesiton or problem I'm interested in solving through the study of American culture? 7) What is the importance of Califorina prehistory? 8) What two topics would I teach if I taught a course on America and Race? 9) What courses would I like to teach? 10) Do I feel comfortable teaching courses on American history?

I can't help but go through the interview in my head over and over. Why didn't I answer this question in such a way? Damn...why did I use that phrase or word?! I need to just forget about it and move on...but I really really want this job!

Argh. Anyhow...back to grading. Hopefully I'll get another call back...