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Getting over job interview anxiety

A female student sitting at a desk
A female student sitting at a desk
Image by Alys Tomlinson
Written by
Careers and Employability
Published date
25 October 2021

Job interviews can be scary for some of us. The idea that you’re going to have to face people judging you for your achievements and personality is daunting and way out of your comfort zone. Of course, it’s natural to be a bit anxious about the prospect of a big change in your life, like a new job, but it can be detrimental when it affects your performance in an interview. We’ve pulled together a few tips and resources about how to beat (or at least lessen) job interview anxiety.

  1. Practice your interview with our online simulator

    Get used to interviews and interview questions by taking some time to practice with our AI powered simulator – you can either use the set interview questions or add in your own. It’ll give you instant feedback on how to improve your use of filler words - you can even record yourself and watch your performance back.

    ual.careercentre.me/welcome/ual

  2. Plan your morning before the interview

    Think about how your anxiety manifests – does waiting a long time affect it? If so, try to get an interview slot in the morning so you it doesn’t build up during the day. Does meditation and breathing help? Try and plan in a 15-minute meditation before the interview to calm down. Have you had something to eat? Even something small like a piece of fruit can help change your mood a little. Is there a song which always lifts your spirits? Could you make a playlist and listen to it before the interview? It’s also important to plan your journey in advance and leave plenty of time for travelling as arriving in good time will help you to stay calm.

  3. Think about questions they might ask ahead of time and prep your answers

    It’s less scary to respond to a question you already know the answer to – so have a look at the job description and see what skills they highlight, what they’re looking for in a candidate, and formulate some questions based on what they’ve written. For example, if they mention the job requires management experience, you can anticipate a question on how you manage a team.

  4. Take some LinkedIn Learning courses on interview technique

    As a UAL student or graduate, you have access to LinkedIn Learning, which has hundreds of courses including several on improving your interview skills. Being prepared and practicing the scenarios you’re worrying about can help alleviate some of the anxiety associated with it.

    LinkedIn learning page one

    Linkedin learning page two

  5. Acknowledge in the interview that you’re nervous

Saying it out loud can take some of the pressure off from trying to come across completely composed and confidentin the actual interview. The people interviewing you are probably seeing a fair few people for each role you apply for, and they’re more likely to remember what you say about your experience than you mentioning you’re a little nervous.

In addition to these tips, we recommend looking at the following resources:

Scope’s interview anxiety resources

Preparing for Job Interviews

Job interview learning guide