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Job Interview Answer: What Is Your Teaching Philosophy?

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Teacher writing equations on the black board
Michael Blann

When you are applying for an teaching position a typical job interview question is "What is your teaching philosophy?"

Your teaching philosophy is a reflection of your education and classroom experience, developed during college or graduate school, and in the classrooms where you have taught. In order to prepare for your interview, you should review papers you have written and reflect on your personal philosophy.

Even if your interviewer doesn't ask you what your philosophy is, you may want to take the initiative to incorporate it into your interview. Many times, an interviewer will ask if there is anything else you would like to tell her about yourself, and this would be an appropriate time to highlight your philosophy.

If you don't currently have a personal teaching philosophy, take some time to develop a few key points, and write them down. Your teaching philosophy should be a self-reflective statement about your beliefs on teaching and learning. In the document, you should discuss how you put your beliefs into practice by providing examples of what you have done and/or what you plan to do in the classroom.

Teaching styles and methods change, so it's important to review your philosophy from time to time, update it, and make changes when necessary. Be definite about your beliefs, but remember to stay open to change and growth, based on the needs of the school you are applying to.

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