13 ESL Teacher Interview Questions and Answers

Updated on: May 23, 2022

If you have appeared in an ESL Teacher interview before, you might have an idea of what to expect in an upcoming one. 

However, if you are appearing in an interview for the first time, you may be a bit unsure about what questions you will be asked and how you need to answer them.

Typical interview questions for the ESL teacher position include your strengths and weaknesses and where you see yourself in five years.

Of course, more tough questioning can be a source of much stress and may eventually lead to an unsuccessful interview.

Do not worry!

Successful interviews are all about preparation.

If you are prepared well, nothing can stop you from entirely “running away with an interview.”

At an ESL teacher interview, you may need more than just showing your classroom management skills.

Since you appear in an interview for a position where you will be required to teach English as a second language, a few bilingual words thrown into the interview can take you places.

Recommended: ESL Teacher Resume Sample

Take a look at the following interview questions and answers for the ESL Teacher position.

ESL Teacher Interview Questions and Answers

1. Which languages are you fluent in apart from English?

I can write and speak Spanish and German fluently and know basic Mandarin.

2. Do you feel that knowing different languages is a plus point in an individual’s life? Explain why.

I do. It is a proven fact that the more languages an individual knows, the more developed their senses are. Additionally, knowing many languages eventually puts us in a position where we can make stable career and relocation decisions. One does not feel alienated when one is away from the home country. Also, knowing more than one language is a source of high confidence.

3. How do you manage a classroom of students who speak different languages?

The trick is to exercise patience. While it is not easy to handle students who all speak different languages and are striving to learn English, if you show that you are in charge by your demeanor in class, classroom management is not a problem.

4. What essential qualities should an ESL teacher have to be successful?

It is vital for an ESL to be passionate about what s/he is teaching. Equally important is to be able to bring creativity and energy to the class so that lessons are not annoying.

5. How would you rate your ESL lesson planning abilities? Explain why.

On a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate my lesson planning abilities at 8. This is because I start at the very beginning and do not skip concepts just because they are not as impressive as the next one would be. Also, I do not move on to the next lesson unless all students in the class have grasped the concept. Where needed, my lesson plans are tailored to each student’s capabilities.

6. Why did you join the English teaching field?

I set out to become an English teacher, but as I joined the field, I felt teaching English as a secondary language is much more challenging than teaching it to the natives. I also like interacting with students from various parts of the world, so I chose ESL teaching as my final career destination.

7. Describe an instance where you disagreed with the higher management? What did you do?

Once there was this student who joined my class in March and graded assessments were due in June. I requested the management to allow grading of the new student by oral skills but they insisted that he should participate in the written assessment like the rest of the class. I didn’t think it was fair since the English was very new to the child, I finally convinced the management to allow me to set a different paper for him based on his prior learning.

8. How do you maintain discipline in class?

My lessons are highly interactive and engaging, and discipline is usually not a problem in my classrooms. If a problem does arise, I deal with it firmly and often succeed.

9. What qualities must an ESL teacher have?

Excellent command of the subject, basic knowledge of other languages and their origins, lesson planning and delivery skills, familiarity with modern ESL teaching approaches, classroom control, and a lot of patience

10. How has your education supported your ESL teaching experience?

Having a relevant ESL degree, I believe whatever I have studied has actively supported and helped me in my career development as an ESL teacher. However, a microteaching project that I did in my bachelor’s degree was very informative and provided practical exposure to the field.

11. Name five factors to consider in lesson planning?

Five factors to consider while planning an ideal ESL classroom lesson include:

  1. Strength of students
  2. Topic
  3. The time allowed
  4. Backgrounds of the students
  5. The level at which students are being taught
12. Do you have any experience in the curriculum department?

When I was serving at the NY Community College, I got the opportunity to revise three units of the ESL curriculum for the Associate’s Degree level. In collaboration with the curriculum wing, I achieved the target within the given time frame, and the units I revised were included in the syllabus being taught there.

13. Are you technology proficient?

Yes, I am well versed in utilizing and setting up various electronic Audiovisual aids in the classroom and also well-practiced in computing student results and gauging their progress electronically with the help of excel and other score integration software. I have also been using the ESL web Directory software and recommending it to my students for the past five years.

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