Job Interview, Part 2

Posted: 01.05.08 in Blogging

Applying for a place on a PGCE course isn’t as simple as just completing an application form then popping in for an interview, as I found out this week. The application process is controlled by an arm of UCAS, the university admissions service. As such, it costs £5 just to enquire. Furthermore, any correspondence you make to any universities you apply to must pass through their hands first. That is just the first obstacle.

I was invited for an interview on Wednesday (yesterday). However, this “interview” would last from 11am until 4pm. The actual interview lasted half an hour at the end of the day. Beforehand, we were asked to present a small presentation on some rather appalling “stimuli” for starter activities for a lesson; discussed the worst piece of television journalism ever created to support private schools in the developing world; and finally writing an essay on how labelling children as problems based on their welfare is bound to inhibit their self-esteem. Two sides of A4…

That’s not to say I didn’t learn anything: the interview was rather useful. The head of maths in the education department pointed out my errors when attempting to answer his classroom-based questions. And I committed a few errors. I’m not so sure I shall get a place on this course, so I was rather hopeless (in more way than one) until today.

Today was the deadline of my written project. It’s funny, most people were very reluctant to hand it in. They were talking about asking the secretary to pull hard on the file to prise the object from the author’s hands. I’m not so sure why that is. Perhaps it is a fear of the impending scrutinising of the work inside. Perhaps it is the fact that they have spent the best part of a year working on it, and continually changing it and never truly reaching satisfaction. I was quite pleased to hand it in in the end. It isn’t perfect. I would have liked to have added more, particularly proving that the simplicial homology groups of a space make a topological invariant. But it’s not bad either.

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