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Common Interview Questions for Education Assistants

By: Lindsay McKay

Published On: July 19, 2021

Common Interview Questions for Education Assistants

Are you a compassionate and patient individual who loves working with children? Do you excel working within a team, have great communication skills, and want to make a difference every day? A career as an education assistant could be for you! The first step is to complete your training by taking a comprehensive education assistant program and researching potential positions that might interest you. In a school setting, a home support team, or after-school tutoring are some potential work environments.  

Getting that call or email that you have been selected for an interview is exciting and nerve-racking. Preparing yourself for the interview will help make you more confident, which will help you with your nerves. It is also okay to be nervous as it shows your care about the job. Remember, every interview is a great learning experience, whether a positive or negative outcome. Read on to learn some of the most common interview questions for education assistants, also known as teachers' assistants, and the best way to handle each question.  

Why do you think you are qualified for this education assistant role? 

This question should be an easy one as you would have taken an education assistant course that has provided you with all the knowledge and skills to succeed as an education assistant. Talk about any experiences, work or personal, you have with children, individuals with special needs, and in an education environment. Be sure to bring up your social perceptiveness and other skills education assistants should have 

What is your goal in the role of education assistant? 

This question is to see what your motivations are as an education assistant. A good way to prepare for this is to see if your motivation aligns with the school’s goal and vision. This could be something along the lines of you believe children should have people around them who are truly dedicated to helping them reach their full potential. Or you believe that a strong education system is central to the development of a well-prepared generation of students. Whatever your beliefs may be, it is important that you can communicate them clearly and genuinely. Ensure that you have looked at the school district’s goal and vision before the interview. 

Do you think teamwork is vital in the education setting? 

The answer is an astounding yes! Teamwork is essential between teachers and students, teachers and education assistants, students and education assistants, between parents, teachers, and education assistants. Communication skills training between all involved is vital to ensure that students are getting the time, attention and levels of instruction required. The interviewer wants to ensure that you will do what is best for the students and their learning and that you are a team player.  

Do you have any special abilities or training, such as art or music skills, which could be useful in the classroom? 

This is where you get to talk about your other passions outside of being an education assistant and what else you can bring to the classroom that would be beneficial to the children's development. Do you have experience with the Orton Gillingham approach and dyslexia? Art and creativity are also so important to bring to the classroom, especially at young ages or for children that have trouble expressing themselves. Being able to provide healthy ways to express themselves is essential to the development of a well-prepared generation of students. 

What will you do if the teacher is absent? 

As an education assistant, you would not be stepping up as a teacher for the day, but you would be working with a substitute teacher who does not know any of the kids or the classroom. So, you are the consistent person/voice of authority, and you can transfer that respect and authority to the substitute. There would be moments where the sub is getting oriented where you would step up and lead the classroom, ensuring that the rules and vision of the regular classroom teacher are maintained. You want to lay out a plan for how you would establish this authority and welcome in the substitute teacher. You also want to mention that you acknowledge the students are worried for the safety of their teacher and that you would assure them that their teacher is fine without giving away any personal information.  

What are some of the techniques you find useful when working with children with special needs to improve their social skills?  

This is where your knowledge from your education assistant course and other experiences comes in. Much of your work will be with children with special needs, and you must have the knowledge, desire, compassion, and patience to work with students who need your help. The interviewer wants to be sure that you know different techniques and that you will get to know your students as individuals instead of identifying them by their diagnosis. Your practicum experiences will come in handy as you will be able to give real examples of the techniques that you used. (make sure you don’t use real names, confidentiality is key)


The information contained in this post is considered true and accurate as of the publication date. However, the accuracy of this information may be impacted by changes in circumstances that occur after the time of publication. Ashton College assumes no liability for any error or omissions in the information contained in this post or any other post in our blog


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