Top Virtual Interview Tips

5/17/2020 by Dr. Althea Walker

Top Virtual Interview Tips

Dr. Althea Walker, Department Manager, Hillsborough County Public Schools Office of Teacher Recruitment (813) 840-7167

Learn the top teaching interview tips to help you get hired.

Our school buildings may be empty because of the coronavirus, but learning is still happening in the nation's 7th largest school district. Join our team of more than 14,000 teachers. Hillsborough County Public Schools is hiring great teachers now for the 2020-21 school year.

Preparing for a virtual teaching job interview

There are some valuable tips from a Harvard Business School article about getting ready for an online job interview; many suggestions apply especially for teaching job candidates.

Some highlights:

  • Test your technology. Make sure your computer, internet connection, microphone and so on are in good working order.
  • Practice, don’t memorize. Get your talking points down pat, then rehearse them until they no longer sound rehearsed. Try a mock interview with a friend, preferably one who will be honest with you about any flaws yet provide positive reinforcement too. Your confidence level will rise and, reverting back to the first tip, at least you’ll know that all of your equipment works.
  • Be mindful of body language. Practice your posture, smile and maintain eye contact. You’ll want to project confidence and professionalism, just as you would in a classroom. Plus, for good eye contact, be sure to look into the camera instead of the screen.
  • Dress the part. Present yourself like you would for a real teaching interview – because this is a real teaching interview!

Zoom and FaceTime Job Interview Tips for Teachers

You’ve probably talked to more people on video calls recently than ever. The Verge recently shared an article and how-to video with 5 tips on how to look your best.  We’ll share a few of those tips as well as additional advice about virtual interviews that will prepare you to shine.

  • Light your face. It’s best to start with lighting because that will dictate where you are sitting.
  • Raise your camera. You don’t want people to feel like they are looking up or down at you.
  • Test your video before the call. Show up to your meeting already looking good so that you’re not adjusting your surroundings, screen brightness, angle, or hair live for everyone to see.
  • Find a quiet place (and good headphones). You’ll sound better if you take a call in a quiet place.
  • Get comfortable. Start with a comfortable place to sit or stand for a long period of time.
  • And remember, set yourself up in a place without people walking behind you or pet interruptions.

Here's an example of what not to do.

Interview, what not to do
(Photo by Allie Smith on Unsplash)


Here's an example of how to be prepared.


Phone Interview Tips for Teachers

If it’s a phone interview, even if you think the interviewer won’t see you, dress well anyway. You never know when the interviewer may want to switch to video. Again, smile and carry a positive attitude. That will come through even during the course of an audio-only conversation.

Teachers, Technology and Job Interviews - Emphasize your technology smarts

As Hillsborough Schools adjust to teaching so many students from home, our teachers are conducting eLearning with the following software. If you have experience with these platforms, great! Point it out on your resume and during your teaching interview. If you don’t, learn as much about these programs as you can by going to their websites and watching instructional videos:  

  • Zoom for conferencing
  • Edsby
  • FlipGrid to host virtual book clubs
  • Live NearPod Lessons
  • Office Forms
  • Wakelet
  • E-Learning with MyOn

The online interview process is even more important at a new school like the soon-to-open Sumner High. A principal and a teaching candidate talked about the process on our Facebook page. Sumner principal David Brown conducted more than 40 online job interviews in a short span amid widespread self-isolation measures.

Final Job Interview Tips for Landing a Teaching Job

Be sure to focus mentally for teaching job opportunities.  You might have extra down time at home while self-isolating during the coronavirus pandemic. Use that time to focus on your teaching techniques and do all the research you can on Hillsborough Schools and in particular your possible school destination for teaching in Tampa.

Also, take the time to beef up your portfolio. Be sure to mention any awards you have won or extra certificates you have. Even if they are not applicable for your desired position, they show dedication.

Check out our other Teaching Job Search Tips, including: Principal’s Top Interview Questions, Resume Writing Tips, Teaching Job Fit, and more on our website Teaching Job Tips archive.  

Do your research, polish up your tech skills and resume, get interview-ready and apply soon to be one of our next award-winning teachers in Hillsborough Schools in Fall 2020.

Our website has information about our award-winning schools with details about current opportunities, information for career changers, where and how to apply and many more details to help you prepare for a teaching career in Tampa.