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Nursing Interview Questions to Prepare for in Every Interview

Resume & Interview June 28, 2013

Once nursing school is complete, the hard part is not even close to over. Now it is time for the nursing graduate to get a job. For most graduates, getting an interview is relatively easy, especially if they graduated from a top-class school. However, passing the tough interview questions that may arise is another story. The best way for a nursing graduate to land a job is to amply prepare for the interview. According to the University of Delaware, here are seven nursing interview questions that one should practice during interview preparation.

How many years do you see yourself staying with this hospital?

It takes hospitals a lot of money and time to recruit and hire new nurses. They want to make sure that candidates will be worth the effort involved. No matter what, a nurse should always state that he or she is looking to build a long-term career at that particular hospital. No one knows what the future holds, and things can always change at a later date.

Why did you decide to become a nurse rather than a doctor?

This question is used to determine if the candidate has the right motives for the job. The best answer to this question is that the nurse enjoys the extended one-on-one time with patients. It is important to demonstrate knowledge of what a doctor’s responsibilities are versus what a nurse’s responsibilities are. If the candidate does plan on pursuing his or her education further in order to become a doctor, it should be mentioned at this point.

Give a specific example of a time when you knew you did a good job as a nurse.

With this question, the interviewer wants to make sure that the candidate not only can do a good job, but also has enough confidence to share it. The nursing profession requires a substantial amount of confidence in order to perform the different tasks that are needed in a timely fashion. The best way to answer this question is for the nurse to provide an example where he or she not only demonstrated excellent patient skills, but where he or she also had to think quickly in order to do so.

When you are experiencing a stressful work situation, how do you relax?

The nursing profession is undoubtedly extremely stressful. This question is asked because the interviewer needs to know that when stressful situations do arise, they will be handled in a professional manner. As long as the nurse has a legitimate way to relax and can demonstrate that he or she knows how to handle stressful situations, this question should not be a problem. It is also important to stress that patient care will never be compromised.

How would you respond if, in a rude and haughty tone, a doctor questioned your work, which you knew to be top-notch and absolutely accurate?

An interviewer asks this question because they want to make sure that the nurse candidate can deal with unpleasant situations in a professional way. The wrong way a nurse could answer this question would be to state that he or she would defend herself to the doctor. It is important that the nurse remembers the doctors are his or her superiors. Instead, a nurse should say that he or she would love to discuss the matter further because he or she is always open to constructive criticism and looking for ways to improve.

What led to your interest in nursing?

This question is often asked because the medical facility wants to understand what characteristics a person has that would make them a good nurse. Did he or she just get into the field on accident or does he or she truly have a passion for helping others? The best way for a candidate to answer this question is to state that he or she wanted to make a difference in other people’s lives and he or she wanted a career that would be challenging and interesting. If a nurse also has family members that are nurses, he or she should mention them as inspiration.

Are there any questions that you have for me?

This is usually the last question asked, but it is one of the most important. If it is the first interview, it is vital that the candidate has some questions prepared that are strictly job related. However, a nurse should never ask about pay or time off during the first interview. These questions are better reserved for a second or third interview. The first interview is to demonstrate one’s abilities, and why he or she is a good fit for that particular hospital.

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