20 Common High School Interview Questions

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There are many steps in the high school application process, but a personal admission interview is necessary. Most high school students do undergo this significant interview at the early stage of their application process. However, it will be best to get to know what questions they ask at a high school interview and practice ahead of your interview date. 

The interview is very necessary to high school admission offices apart from the applicant’s transcripts, test scores, and extracurricular activities. From the interview, the admission offices will get a sense of an applicant’s values, personality, aspirations, and interests. This means that a good interview with applicants can greatly impact their decision.

In this post, we’ve compiled a list of common admission interview questions and how to answer them. This does not mean they won’t get another variation of the questions, but knowing what you want to answer will increase your confidence.

Pro Tip: Practice makes perfect, and these high school/private school interview questions for admission will help motivate and come upon how to tell your unique story.

Common High School Interview Questions 

Below are some of the most common high school interview questions for applicants asked by admissions counselors. However, the ability to know how to answer the interview questions below means that your prepared for your high school admission interview.

Tell me about yourself.

This is a common introductory interview question that seems too simple but is somewhat challenging. Where do you start answering? However, your answer needs to be short and precise. Say the grade you’re in, why you’re excited about the school, two major extracurricular activities, and what you enjoy about the school. That’s all.

What are your strengths?

It would be best to think about what your mentors, coaches, and teachers might say about you. An effective leader? Are you a good communicator? A thoughtful problem solver? Then, back up with specific examples, whichever description you decide on. State some of your communication skills. Explain as much as you can.

What are your weaknesses?

This is one of the challenging interview questions for students. How do you approach this question without reflecting negatively on yourself? Approach the question by discussing a real matter you would like to improve. It may be your willingness to participate in class or your note-taking skills. Then, point out some specific ways you’ve started working toward that goal and how the school can help you enhance them. 

What do you like doing when free?

This is another interview question that seems to be easy but tricky. Come up with what you think your admission counselors want to hear:

  • That you spend time with your friends.
  • That you’re a good citizen.
  • That you creatively pursue your hobbies.

Don’t mention video games and TV; focus on creative or intellectual activities that you pursue beyond the classroom or how you have fun with others.

What extracurricular activities interest you?

Your answer needs to align with the extracurricular activities you know and express how you will continue them at the school. However, ensure that the school offers the activities. It will be best to research extracurricular activities your intended new high school offers ahead of time. For instance, if they don’t have a lawn tennis court, don’t mention that. 

What is your favorite subject? Why do you like it?

This is one common admissions interview question that gives the counselors what interests you. However, it will be best you don’t answer the questions according to what you think the admission officer wants to hear. Start by explaining why the subject is your favorite. What is so special about the subject? What assignment or classwork did you enjoy doing? Also, give as many instances as you can. Kindly note that there’s no right or wrong answer; just be prepared to explain it and be honest.

What subject do you find challenging the most?

As I stated earlier above, be honest with your answer. However, you can use this opportunity to highlight your weakness on the subject and how you want your desired high school to help you improve on it. Don’t be negative or use words like “suck at” or “hate” when approaching this question. Accept that you need to study well on that subject and highlight that you are finding ways to do better at it.

How do you get rid of a hard time in a class?

These school interview questions allow you to show off your problem-solving skills. Your admission officer wants you to talk about how you handle adversity. Think about a time when you were given a challenging assignment or project. 

Pro Tip: Only talk about how you used your skills to solve the problem, and not working with a tutor or paying someone to do it for you.

Tell me a little about your family

Discuss how your family has shaped you and some things you do together with them. This question is not for you to describe every member of your household. Also, talk about any traditions you share or important celebrations, and don’t forget to include your extended family.

How do you handle conflict?

This is another interview question for high school students where having a particular instance in mind can be helpful. Normally, you would like to talk about a time you handled a conflict. Was there a time you settled the conflict between your friends? Or when someone wronged you, you rather make peace with the person? Ensure that you are specific with your answer.

How did you spend your last summer?

You don’t need to give them a summary of each day of your last summer in this question. It is necessary to tell them about doing different activities during the summer. Ensure that you mention the kind of activities you participated in, the place you spent your summer, and the voluntary work you did.

Who do you like the most among your friends and why?

When answering this question, keep in mind that the interviewer is not trying to get to know your friend but you. So make sure your answer points out the qualities the friend posses that you admire. And also how you have tried to put some of the attitudes into practice. Remember, talking about your friends’ positive attitude is often simpler than talking about your own.

What accomplishment are you proudest of?

Think of one of your meaningful accomplishments, even if it is small. Talking about when you assisted someone or a challenge you overcame can show thoughtfulness and maturity rather than emphasizing the prize, award, or shot that wins a game. So, it will be best you don’t pick your biggest accomplishment.

What leadership roles have you experienced?

What roles or opportunities in leadership have you experienced?

In this interview question, you don’t need to talk about your biggest roles here, and it is similar to the question above. It will best you talk about when you showed the leader’s attitude by stepping up to take extra responsibilities in something. However, if you were a chairman or manager, you are supposed to talk about it, but you will not have any problem if you do not discuss it.

Why do you prefer to attend a private school than a public?

This is question can be asked to you if your intended new high school is private and not public. Approach the question by talking about your broader goals, and don’t focus only on your intended school. Focus on the positives you hope to get from the school and don’t say negative things about your public school. Talk about the more in-school resources, the kind of learner you are, and more face time with teachers will enable you to excel.

Is there one thing you would change concerning your current school? If yes, what is it?

Don’t be negative with your answer to this admission interview question. Come up with something your current school doesn’t have that your new intended high school has. Ensure that to make known that this thing does not mean that the teachers in your current school are not doing well or the school is bad.

How will you Gain From Attending our High School?

This question can be tricky, but they expect you to talk about what is special about their school and why it suits you. Do they have values that matter to you? Is their approach to learning unique? Opportunities you can only get from their school. It will best focus on how you will benefit from those factors.

How will you contribute to our school?

This interview question is different from the question above. It will be best for your answer to stick to concrete items. For instance, if you’re joining the volleyball team or drama department, talk about that. Try to be specific on how you will be a good team member, classmate, friendly to other students, and other things you want to do.

Do you have any questions for me (School)?

At the end of the conversion, your admission interviewer will likely ask you whether you have any questions for them. It is necessary to have specific questions to ask them about the school. However, doing this will prove that you are interested in admission into this school. In addition, asking your own questions gives you the opportunity to gain insight about the school, especially some facts not discussed or stated on their website.

Additional Tips for Interviewing

When speaking with the interviewer or someone, make eye contact, whether in casual conversation or a formal interview setting. During the interview, you have to sit straight. In addition, your body language should be welcoming and confident. This is an opportunity to meet those that might turn out to be your teachers or classmates, so be confident and engage with others. 

Also, note that the admission interview is also an opportunity to meet new people. Some may turn out to be your future classmates and teachers, so take every opportunity to be outgoing and engage with others.

Final Verdict

The interview can indeed be the most challenging part of high school admissions, but note that the interviewer wants to hear about you. As long as you listen to the question and answer accordingly, you will do well. Also, know that there are no right or wrong answers to high school admission interview questions.

Emmanuel Dominic

Emmanuel Dominic is the Founder and CEO of Examspot, a passionate educationist, avid reader, and data scientist. With a bachelor's degree in Economics and Development Studies, Emmanuel shares practical tips and strategies for excelling in exams such as WAEC, NECO, IJMB, JUPEB, and more. His well-researched blog posts provide valuable insights on exam techniques, study habits, and stress management, empowering students to achieve outstanding results.