20 SAIT Interview Questions and Answers

Prepare for the types of questions you are likely to be asked when interviewing for a position at SAIT.

SAIT is a world-class polytechnic institute that offers more than 100 career programs in technology, trades, and business. Located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, SAIT has been providing students with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed for over 100 years.

If you’re hoping to land a spot at SAIT, you’ll need to ace your interview. The interview process for SAIT is notoriously competitive, so you’ll need to be prepared to answer a variety of questions.

In this guide, we’ve provided a list of sample SAIT interview questions and answers to help you prepare for your interview.

SAIT Interview Process

The interview process at SAIT can vary depending on the position you are applying for. For some positions, you may only have a phone screening, while others may have multiple rounds of interviews. The length of the hiring process also varies, but is typically fairly quick.

Overall, the interview process is generally positive. However, some reviewers noted that it can be intense and that the panel members may not be very engaged. It is important to do your research on the organization ahead of time and to come prepared with examples of your skills and experience.

1. What is your teaching philosophy?

This question is an opportunity to show the interviewer your teaching style and how you can help students succeed. Your answer should include a brief description of your teaching philosophy, what you believe are important qualities in a student and how you would encourage those traits in your classroom.

Example: “I believe that every student has unique learning styles and abilities, so I try to create a positive environment where they feel comfortable asking questions and sharing their ideas. In my last position, I had a student who was struggling with a concept but didn’t want to ask for help because he thought it made him look dumb. I talked to him privately about his concerns and reassured him that everyone struggles at some point. He ended up getting an A on the assignment.”

2. Why do you want to work at SAIT?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your interest in their organization. They want to know what attracted you to the job and whether you have done any research on SAIT. Before your interview, read through the school’s website or other online sources to familiarize yourself with the institution. You can use this information to answer this question by describing what aspects of the school appeal to you.

Example: “I chose to apply for a position at SAIT because I was impressed by the school’s reputation as an innovative leader in technology education. I am passionate about STEM subjects and would love to be part of a team that is committed to developing new programs and courses. I also think it would be exciting to work in a city like Calgary where there are so many opportunities for growth.”

3. Do you have any experience working with people from different cultural backgrounds?

Employers ask this question to see if you have experience working with people from different backgrounds. They want to know that you can work well with others and respect their culture. Show the interviewer that you are willing to learn about new cultures and adapt to them.

Example: “I worked at a restaurant where many of our customers were tourists. I learned how to speak some basic phrases in Spanish, French and German so I could help our customers better. It was challenging at first, but after a while, it became easier for me to understand what they wanted. I also made sure to greet all of our customers with a smile no matter what language they spoke.”

4. Have you ever had a difficult student, how did you handle it?

This question is an opportunity to show your problem-solving skills and ability to work with a variety of people. When answering this question, it can be helpful to mention the steps you took to resolve the situation or how you helped the student succeed in their coursework.

Example: “In my current role as a computer science instructor, I have had students who were struggling with the material. To help them understand the concepts better, I would provide extra resources like online tutorials and videos that explain difficult topics. If they still needed more assistance, I would meet with them one-on-one to go over the material until they understood it.”

5. What are some of the challenges facing students today and how would you help them overcome those challenges?

This question is an opportunity to show your passion for helping students succeed. You can use examples from your own experience or you can describe a hypothetical situation that shows how you would help a student overcome challenges and achieve success.

Example: “I think one of the biggest challenges facing students today is time management. With so many responsibilities, it’s hard to stay on top of everything. I would encourage them to create a schedule and stick to it as much as possible. It may take some trial and error, but eventually they will find a system that works for them. Another challenge is finding resources when they need them. I would make sure they know about all available resources, including online databases and library hours.”

6. How do you think education will change in the next 5 years?

This question is an opportunity to show your knowledge of the industry and how you can adapt. You can use this question to discuss a specific change that you think will happen in education or something you would like to see happen.

Example: “I believe we are going to see more online learning opportunities, especially for students who need flexibility with their schedules. I also think there will be more emphasis on project-based learning where students learn by doing rather than memorizing facts. This style of learning allows students to apply what they’ve learned and develop critical thinking skills.”

7. What are some of your favorite classes that you took in college or university?

This question can help the interviewer get to know you better and understand what your interests are. You should pick a few classes that were interesting or challenging, and explain why they were meaningful to you.

Example: “My favorite class was my first programming course in college. I had no prior experience with coding, so it was quite challenging at first. However, by the end of the semester, I felt like I could write code on my own. It was an amazing feeling to be able to create something from scratch using just a computer program.”

8. What kind of technology skills do you have?

The interviewer may ask this question to see if you have the necessary skills for the job. They want to know that you can perform your duties without much training and that you are familiar with the software they use in their department. To answer, list any technology skills you have, including computer programs, mobile apps or other technical abilities.

Example: “I am proficient in Microsoft Office Suite, as well as Google Drive and Gmail. I also have experience using social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, which is helpful when creating content for our website. I’m comfortable learning new technologies, so I would be happy to take additional training if needed.”

9. Tell me about a time when you were given a task that was not clear, what did you do?

This question is a great way to see how you respond to ambiguity and uncertainty. It also allows the interviewer to assess your problem-solving skills, critical thinking abilities and ability to communicate effectively.

Example: “In my current role as an IT specialist, I am often given tasks that are not always clear or specific. In these situations, I try to ask questions to clarify what exactly I’m being asked to do. If it’s still unclear after asking questions, I will research the task myself until I understand it fully. Then, I will present my findings to my supervisor so they can give me further instructions.”

10. Describe a time when you had to make an unpopular decision.

This question can help interviewers understand how you make decisions and whether or not you’re willing to take responsibility for them. When answering this question, it can be helpful to describe a time when you made a decision that was unpopular but ultimately beneficial for the organization.

Example: “In my last role as an IT manager, I had to decide between two different software programs for our company’s accounting system. One of the systems was more expensive than the other, but it also offered more features. Ultimately, I decided to go with the more expensive option because it would save us money in the long run by allowing us to automate many of our financial processes. While some employees were unhappy about the price increase, they understood why we needed the new system.”

11. How familiar are you with the city of Calgary?

The interviewer may ask this question to see if you have any experience with the city. If you are a recent graduate, they may also want to know how familiar you are with the campus and surrounding area. Use your answer to highlight any personal or professional experiences in Calgary that make you more qualified for the position.

Example: “I’ve lived in Calgary my entire life, so I am very familiar with the city. In fact, I graduated from SAIT’s online program last year, which allowed me to complete most of my coursework while working full-time at an accounting firm downtown. This helped me gain valuable work experience while completing my degree.”

12. What is your experience with planning events?

Event planning is a key part of the SAIT student experience. The interviewer wants to know if you have any prior event planning experience and how it relates to your future career goals. If you do not have any event planning experience, you can talk about other relevant work experiences that relate to this role.

Example: “I’ve never planned an event before, but I am very organized and detail-oriented. In my last job as a receptionist at a law firm, I was responsible for organizing files and documents in a way that made them easy to find. This helped me develop my organizational skills and learn how to prioritize tasks.”

13. What would you say is your greatest strength?

This question is a common one in interviews. It allows you to highlight your skills and abilities, which can help the interviewer understand what you are capable of doing as an SAIT student. When answering this question, it can be helpful to think about the most important skill or ability that you have.

Example: “My greatest strength would be my attention to detail. I am very good at noticing small changes or mistakes, and I am always willing to go back and make sure everything is correct. In my last job, I noticed that our inventory was off by five units. I went through all of the records and found that we had accidentally counted two units twice. This helped us save money on our budget.”

14. What would you say is your greatest weakness?

This question is a common one in interviews, and it’s often asked to see how you respond to criticism. Employers want to know that you can be honest about your weaknesses while also showing that you’re working on them. When answering this question, try to pick something that isn’t too serious or personal.

Example: “I would say my greatest weakness is not being able to turn off work when I leave the office. I’m always thinking of new ideas for projects and ways to improve our department, which makes me a bit of a night owl. To combat this, I’ve started using apps like Forest to help me stay away from my phone at night.”

15. Describe a time when you had to deal with an angry customer, how did you handle it?

This question is an opportunity to show your problem-solving skills and ability to remain calm under pressure. When answering this question, it can be helpful to describe a specific situation where you had to deal with an angry customer and how you handled the situation.

Example: “In my previous role as a receptionist at a law firm, I often fielded calls from clients who were upset about their case or wanted to speak with one of our attorneys. One day, a client called me very upset because they felt we weren’t doing enough for them. I listened to what they had to say and then explained that our attorney was working on their case and would call them back later in the week with updates. The client seemed satisfied with my response and hung up.”

16. Are you comfortable using MS Office?

The interviewer may ask this question to see if you have experience using MS Office programs, such as Word and Excel. If you are not familiar with these programs, consider taking a class or practicing on your own before the interview.

Example: “I am very comfortable using MS Office programs like Word and Excel. I use them daily in my current role at a local business where I manage customer accounts and invoices. In addition, I took an online course through Udemy that helped me learn more about how to use these programs.”

17. What type of research projects have you worked on?

This question can help the interviewer get a better idea of your technical skills and how you apply them to real-world projects. When answering this question, it can be helpful to mention any research projects that were particularly challenging or rewarding.

Example: “In my last role as an IT specialist for a small business, I worked on several different types of research projects. One project was helping our company create a more efficient way to track customer service calls. This involved researching various software programs and comparing their features to see which would work best for our company. Another project I worked on was creating a new password policy for all employees after we discovered some employee passwords weren’t secure enough.”

18. If you could teach a class, what would you teach?

This question is a great way to see how you would fit in with the SAIT community. It also helps employers understand your interests and passions, which can help them decide if you are a good fit for their school. When answering this question, try to think of something that relates to your major or career goals.

Example: “If I could teach a class, I would love to teach a creative writing course. I have always enjoyed writing, and I feel like it’s an important skill to develop. I would want to encourage my students to write about what they know best, whether that be personal experiences or fictional stories. I would also make sure to give constructive feedback so that everyone feels comfortable sharing their work.”

19. What is your experience with budgeting and financial management?

The interviewer may ask this question to learn more about your experience with financial management and budgeting. Use examples from previous work or school projects that demonstrate your ability to manage budgets, create financial reports and analyze data.

Example: “In my last position as a project manager, I was responsible for creating monthly budgets for each of the company’s projects. I also had to monitor our spending throughout the month to ensure we stayed within our budget. If we went over budget, I would have to submit an expense report to upper management explaining why we needed additional funds. In addition to managing budgets, I also created weekly financial reports for senior management to review.”

20. How would you describe yourself as a leader?

This question can help the interviewer determine your leadership skills and how you would apply them to a role at SAIT. When answering this question, it can be helpful to describe yourself as a leader in some way and explain why that is an accurate description of you.

Example: “I believe I am a strong leader because I have always been someone who cares about my peers and wants to see everyone succeed. In previous roles, I’ve noticed that when I take on a leadership position, others are more likely to follow my example and step up to lead themselves. This has helped me develop my own leadership skills and learn from those around me.”


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