Harvard graduate school interview questions mimic the commonly asked , but each individual Harvard graduate school will approach the interview process and interview questions differently. Your grad school interview is a critical part of , so it’s a good idea to review the application process and interview instructions for the program you’re applying to. In this blog, we’ll look at the graduate school interview questions asked by the different Harvard graduate schools, including sample answers and tips on how to prepare for your interview.
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Harvard graduate school interview questions will be similar to most of the commonly asked graduate school interview questions. Not all of the Harvard graduate schools will use interviews in their admissions process, and those that do may use them differently. No matter where you apply, you’ll need to be prepared for both the uncommon questions and the frequently asked ones.
A or can be a great professional resource to use to help you prepare. They can help you practice with Ivy League grad school interview questions and set up mock interviews to give you time to prepare for an interview and get feedback on your answers.
Being well prepared for Harvard graduate school interview questions, whether it’s for a Master’s or PhD program, is vital. Harvard considers the interview process very important when it comes to admissions decisions, and it is a key factor in in most cases.
The big Harvard graduate programs like , and all use grad school interviews in their admissions process, and the interview is a critically important part of getting accepted, so you need to be well prepared and stand out! Check out some and to get started on what to expect and learn how to structure your answers.
For the other Harvard graduate schools, interviews can be an important part of the admissions decisions, too. We’ll take a look at some more of the Harvard graduate interview questions below:
- Why Harvard Divinity School?
- Why are you pursuing a master’s degree? Why now?
- Why should we choose you?
- What will you contribute to Harvard Divinity School?
- How will Harvard Divinity School help you achieve your professional and personal goals?
- What are your passions and interests outside of school?
Admissions Interviews at Harvard Divinity School
An admissions interview is a requirement for all four of the degree programs at the Harvard Divinity School: Master of Divinity, Master of Theological Studies, Master of Theology and Master of Religion and Public Life.
The Harvard Divinity School primarily seeks to get your answers to three questions in the interview: why they should choose you, why you chose the Harvard Divinity School and why you are applying for a master’s degree at this point in time. The interview is an opportunity to share more of your personal story and allow the admissions committee to get to know who you are beyond your application materials.
Candidates will be invited to a 15-minute virtual interview with admissions staff. Interview invitations are sent out in late January or early February, with interviews being held in February and March. Admissions decisions are finalized in late March.
While an interview does not guarantee admission and not all candidates will receive in invitation, your interview can increase your chances of being accepted and have a positive impact on your application.
Interviews are not a normal part of the application process at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. However, some applicants to the Master of Design Engineering may be contacted for an interview.
- Why are you interested in design engineering?
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years in design engineering?
- Tell me about the most challenging engineering project you've worked on.
- What makes a good design engineer?
- How do you ensure that you are up to date with the latest design engineering techniques and trends?
Want some grad school interview prep tips? Watch this video:
Admissions Interviews at Harvard School of Dental Medicine
Interviews are conducted both in-person and virtually, by invitation only. Interviews at the Harvard Dental School are a full-day affair, and include an orientation and introduction to the program, two individual interviews with admissions staff and opportunities to learn more about the school and meet with current students. While the interview process can be quite involved, the primary goal of the individual admissions interview is to gauge applicants’:
- Knowledge and experience
- Suitability for the program
- Potential contribution to the field of dentistry
Be sure to practice ahead of your interview with some , and be prepared to answer the in your interview, too. It’s also vital to come prepared with questions of your own to ask, as you’ll be meeting members of faculty and current students throughout the day.
- What are your short-term and long-term goals?
- Tell me about a time you demonstrated leadership ability
- Describe a project that you led. What did you do to keep it on track?
- Why do you want to join our graduate program?
Applicants to the Harvard Graduate School of Education may be invited to a virtual interview with admissions staff. Interview dates are usually held in January before final admissions decisions are sent out. Only some applicants may be invited to an interview.
Applicants to the PhD in Education program should prepare for common questions like “” and “”, as well as more in-depth questions about your background, experience and past research. For professional interview prep, consider getting some help from a or .
- Why are you interested in a Master’s in Education/PhD in Education?
- Describe a course you taught and how you evaluated your teaching and students’ learning.
- How would you teach [subject] and which texts might you require?
- Describe your philosophy of teaching.
- Give me an example of a time you were working with a student who was not performing adequately and how you handled the situation.
It can be difficult to prepare for Harvard graduate school interview questions if you’re not sure exactly what to expect. Every interview may be different, there is not confirmed set of questions you’ll be asked, so you need to be ready for anything. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for your graduate school interview!
1. What questions does Harvard ask in a graduate school interview?
While Harvard graduate school interview questions can vary depending on which program you’re applying to, in general, admissions interviews are meant to gauge why you’ve chosen to apply to Harvard, what you will bring to the program and how a degree from Harvard university will impact your professional and personal goals.
2. Does Harvard Graduate School use admissions interviews?
Yes; while not every Harvard graduate school program uses an admissions interview, the major graduate schools, such as Harvard Medical School, Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School and others do use admissions interviews.
3. Does Harvard PhD programs have interviews?
Yes; applicants to Harvard’s PhD programs can expect to be invited to interview as part of the admissions process. Interviewees will be asked common grad school interview questions, as well as about their past education, professional experience, research experience and future goals.
4. How do I prepare for Harvard graduate school interview questions?
To prepare for Harvard graduate school interview questions, review the application and interview process for your chosen graduate program, and check out some of the interview questions you can expect. It’s also a good idea to use mock interviews to prep for your interview and practice your responses.
5. What are some common graduate school interview questions?
Some common graduate school interview questions, aside from “tell me about yourself” and “why this program?” can include questions about why you are choosing to study at the graduate level, what your short and long-term goals are, what you can contribute to a graduate school program and questions about your application materials.
6. Who can help me prepare for a graduate school interview?
Graduate school admissions consultants or a grad school advisor can help students prepare for admissions interviews by coaching them on interview prep, providing mock interviews and feedback on their interview responses.
7. How do I stand out in a grad school interview?
To stand out in a grad school interview, first rehearse your interview performance and responses until you can deliver them in a clear, confident way. Be sure to research the program you’re applying to and keep up to date on industry trends and news, so you can discuss questions related to the program or field with confidence and well-thought-out answers. Your grad school interview is an opportunity to share a little more about who you are beyond your application materials, so any personal experiences you can share will help distinguish you from other applicants.
8. Does a graduate school interview matter for admissions?
Yes. At the Harvard Graduate Schools, the interview is quite important and can be a determining factor in admissions. It’s important to adequately prepare ahead of time and practice your responses.