Preparing for All-English Interviews: Key Tips

During the pandemic, many students choose to return to their home countries to find internships or jobs. When faced with an all-English interview, many international students often feel unfamiliar with English due to leaving a pure English-speaking environment and are unsure of how to prepare for interviews. In this article, I will discuss how to prepare for an all-English interview and what aspects you should be mindful of.

Practice English Oral Communication in Advance

Two women speaking to each other

One of the most important things to do before an all-English interview is to practice your oral communication skills. You need to be able to speak fluently, clearly, and confidently in English, without relying on scripts or translations. You can practice by:

Watching and Listening to English Media 

You can watch English movies, TV shows, podcasts, or YouTube videos that are related to your field of interest or the job you are applying for. This will help you improve your listening comprehension, vocabulary, pronunciation, and intonation. You can also imitate the speakers or repeat after them to enhance your speaking skills.

Reading and Writing in English

You can read English books, articles, blogs, or newsletters that are relevant to your industry or the position you are seeking. This will help you expand your knowledge, learn new expressions, and improve your grammar and spelling. You can also write summaries, reviews, or opinions on what you read to practice your writing skills.

Speaking With Native or Fluent Speakers 

You can find opportunities to speak with native or fluent English speakers, either online or offline. You can join language exchange platforms, online communities, or local clubs that cater to English learners. You can also ask your friends, family members, or colleagues who speak English well to help you practice. You can have conversations on various topics, ask for feedback, and learn from their mistakes.

Familiarize Yourself with English Information about the Company and Position

Men researching and noting down his notes

Researching the Company

You can visit the company’s website, social media accounts, or online reviews to learn more about its history, vision, mission, values, culture, products, services, achievements, and challenges. You can also look for news articles or press releases that mention the company or its industry. This will help you understand the company’s goals, expectations, and needs.

Reviewing the Job Description

You can read the job description carefully and identify the main duties, responsibilities, qualifications, skills, and requirements for the position. You can also compare your resume and cover letter with the job description and highlight your strengths and achievements that match the criteria. This will help you prepare for potential questions and scenarios that may arise during the interview.

Preparing Questions

You can prepare some questions that you want to ask the interviewer about the company or the position. This will show your curiosity, initiative, and professionalism. You can also prepare some answers for common questions that the interviewer may ask you about yourself, your background, your experience, your motivation, your goals, your strengths, your weaknesses, etc.

Manage Facial Expressions During the Interview

Women being calm during an interview

One of the things that you need to pay attention to during an all-English interview is your facial expressions. Your facial expressions can convey a lot of information about your emotions, attitudes, and confidence levels. You need to be able to control your facial expressions and use them appropriately in different situations. You can do this by:


You should smile when you greet the interviewer, when you introduce yourself, when you make eye contact, when you express gratitude or appreciation, when you agree or compliment something, etc. Smiling will make you look friendly, approachable, and positive.


You should nod when you listen to the interviewer’s questions or comments, when you show understanding or agreement, when you acknowledge feedback or suggestions, etc. Nodding will make you look attentive, respectful, and cooperative.


You should frown when you encounter difficulties or challenges, when you express doubt or confusion, when you disagree or criticize something, etc. Frowning will make you look serious, thoughtful, and honest.

Maintain Language Logic When Answering Questions

Candidate answering the interview question

Another thing that you need to pay attention to during an all-English interview is your language logic when answering questions. Your language logic refers to how well you organize your thoughts, express your ideas, and support your arguments in English. You need to be able to maintain a clear, coherent, and convincing language logic when answering questions. You can do this by:

Using the STAR method 

You can use the STAR method to structure your answers for behavioral or situational questions. The STAR method stands for Situation, Task, Action, and Result. You can describe a specific situation or scenario that you faced in the past or may face in the future, explain the task or goal that you had to accomplish or achieve, describe the action or steps that you took or would take, and state the result or outcome that you obtained or expected.

Using Rransitions 

You can use transitions to connect your sentences and paragraphs and create a smooth flow of information. Transitions are words or phrases that indicate the relationship between your ideas, such as cause and effect, contrast, comparison, addition, etc. You can use transitions such as because, however, for example, moreover, etc.

Using Examples

You can use examples to illustrate your points and provide evidence for your claims. Examples are specific instances or cases that support your general statements or arguments. You can use examples from your personal or professional experience, from your research or knowledge, from your observations or opinions, etc.

Answering Content is Vital

Women noting down notes for her interview to have a better flow of logic

The last thing that you need to pay attention to during an all-English interview is your answering content. Your answering content refers to what you say and how you say it in English. Your answering content is vital because it reflects your personality, abilities, and suitability for the job. You need to be able to provide relevant, accurate, and appropriate answering content for different questions. You can do this by:

Being Honest 

You should be honest when you answer questions about yourself, your background, your experience, your motivation, your goals, etc. You should not lie, exaggerate, or omit important information that may affect your credibility or integrity. You should also admit your mistakes, weaknesses, or failures and explain how you learned from them or overcame them.

Being Concise

You should be concise when you answer questions about the company, the position, the industry, etc. You should not ramble, digress, or repeat unnecessary information that may bore or confuse the interviewer. You should also avoid filler words, slang words, or jargon words that may reduce your clarity or professionalism.

Being Polite

You should be polite when you answer questions about the interviewer, the interview process, the feedback, etc. You should not interrupt, argue, or offend the interviewer. You should also use courteous words, expressions, or gestures that show your respect, gratitude, or appreciation.

In a Nutshell

In conclusion, students should try to enhance their English proficiency and professional skills during their studies. It's best not to wait until facing an ideal opportunity and only then begin preparation, leading to regrets about not starting earlier. For those who are already preparing for interviews, don't spend too much time worrying and regretting. As confucius once said, the best time to plant a tree is ten years ago, and the second-best time is now. All the best for your English interviews!