Fresh out of nursing school? You’re probably feeling a mixture of eagerness, anxiety, and maybe even a little bit of uncertainty about what your first job interview will be like.
However, you must understand that, to land any nursing position, you will have to go through an interview process.
During the interview process, interviewers will ask questions that help them separate the wheat from the chaff, so to speak.
They want to know if you will be a good fit for the position and if you have the skills and qualities that they are looking for in a nurse.
Scope of Interview Questions for New Grad Nurses:
When preparing for an interview, it is helpful to know what types of questions you may be asked. That way, you can be prepared with thoughtful, well-reasoned answers.
Interview questions for new grad nurses revolve around experience, educational background, licensing, and skills.
Questions About Experience
If you have no prior nursing experience, the interviewer will likely ask questions about your clinical rotations and what you learned from them.
For example, you may be asked to describe a time when you had to deal with a difficult patient or a challenging situation.
The interviewer wants to see how you handled the situation and what kind of problem-solving skills you used.
You may also be asked about your patient interaction skills.
Questions About Educational Background
The interviewer will also ask about your educational background.
They may ask about your nursing program and what you liked and didn’t like about it.
They may also ask about your clinical rotations and what you learned from them.
Questions About Licensing
If you are a licensed nurse, the interviewer will likely ask about your license.
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They may ask how long you have been licensed and if you have ever had any disciplinary action taken against your license.
Questions About Skills
The interviewer will also ask about your nursing skills. They may ask about:
- your patient interaction skills,
- your ability to work in a team,
- and your clinical skills.
Moreover, they may ask about your experience with electronic medical records (EMRs) and your comfort level with using them.
These are some of the areas that interview questions for new grad nurses will typically cover.
Before heading straight to the questions and answers you might want to watch this video about what to expect from a new grad nurse interview.
Common New Grad Nurse Interview Questions and Answers
The scope of interview questions for new grad nurses is broad.
Remember, every interview is different and you may not be asked all of these questions. However, there are those questions that are commonly asked in nursing interviews.
Below are five of the most common interview questions for new grad nurses, along with example answers.
1. Tell me about yourself.
This is perhaps the most common question you will always encounter as a new grad nurse or any other professional for that matter.
It can be the most difficult to answer.
The best way to approach this question is to give a brief overview of your professional background and then focus on why you want to be a nurse.
I am Anette, a recent graduate of XYZ University’s nursing program.
I have always been interested in healthcare and helping others.
I chose nursing because it is a profession that allows you to make a difference in people’s lives.
I am passionate about nursing and I am excited to start my career.
2. What are your strengths as a nurse?
When interviewers ask this question, they are looking to see if you have the qualities that they are looking for in a nurse.
They want to know if you will be a good fit for their facility.
Some qualities that interviewers may be looking for include:
- Good communication skills
- Organizational skills
- Ability to work in a team
I am a compassionate person who cares about others.
I am also a good listener and I can see both sides of every situation.
I am patient and I have a lot of patience.
I am also a good communicator and I can speak to people from all walks of life. I am also a team player and I work well with others.
See also: What Are Your Strengths Nursing Interview
3. What are your weaknesses as a nurse?
The strengths question goes hand-in-hand with the weaknesses question.
This question is asked to see if you are self-aware and if you have the qualities that the interviewer is looking for.
When answering this question, you want to be honest but you also want to focus on qualities that can be seen as strengths.
For example, if you are a perfectionist, you can frame that as a strength because it shows that you are detail-oriented.
I am a perfectionist and I expect the same from others.
I can be seen as a bit of a control freak because I like things to be done a certain way.
However, this attention to detail ensures that all patients receive the best possible care.
I am also working on delegating more and trusting others to do things the way that I would.
See also: Weaknesses for Nursing Interview
4. What motivated you to become a nurse?
This question is asked to get to know you on a personal level.
The interviewer wants to know your story and what motivated you to become a nurse.
This is your chance to tell your story and to show your passion for nursing.
I became a nurse because I want to make a difference in the lives of others.
I have always been interested in healthcare and I wanted to enter a profession that would allow me to help others.
Nursing is a profession that is constantly changing and evolving, and I wanted to be a part of that.
I am passionate about nursing and I am excited to start my career.
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5. Why would you want to be part of our team?
This question is asked to see if you have done your research on the facility and if you are a good fit for their team.
When answering this question, you want to focus on why you are a good fit for the facility.
The values of the facility should align with your values as a nurse.
I want to be part of your team because I share the same values as the facility.
I am passionate about providing high-quality patient care and I am excited to work with a team that is dedicated to the same goal.
I believe that I can contribute to the team and I am excited to learn from everyone.
See also: Why Do You Want to Work Here as a Nurse
New Grad Nurse Scenario Interview Questions and Answers
As part of the common interview questions for new grad nurses, the interviewer may put in some nurse scenario questions to test your critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
Some of the most common new grad nurse scenario questions include:
1. How would you handle a conflict with a coworker?
Conflict in the workplace is inevitable.
However, how you handle conflict can say a lot about you as a nurse and as a person.
When answering this question, you want to focus on how you would handle the conflict professionally.
Conflicts are inevitable in the workplace.
If I have a conflict with a coworker, the first thing I would do is try to understand the other person’s perspective.
I would then try to find a compromise that would work for both parties.
If we are unable to come to a resolution, I would be open to speaking with a supervisor or mediator.
2. What would you do if you witnessed a coworker committing a medication error?
Medication errors are one of the most serious mistakes that a nurse can make.
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If you witness a coworker committing a medication error, it is important to report it.
When answering this question, you want to focus on the importance of patient safety.
If I witnessed a coworker committing a medication error, the first thing I would do is report it to my supervisor.
Medication errors can have serious consequences for patients, and it is important to take action to prevent them.
I would also be open to speaking with the coworker to see if any underlying issues may have contributed to the error.
See also: Mayo Clinic Nurse Interview Questions
3. What would you do if a patient became agitated and violent?
Dealing with agitated and violent patients can be one of the most challenging aspects of nursing.
Therefore, when responding to this question, you want to focus on how you would de-escalate the situation.
If a patient became agitated and violent, the first thing I would do is try to calm them down.
I would speak to them in a soothing voice and try to find out what is causing them to be agitated.
I would then work with the rest of the healthcare team to develop a plan to de-escalate the situation.
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How to Prepare for New Grad Nurse Interview Questions?
When attending an interview for a new grad nurse position, it is important to be prepared for the questions that you may be asked.
Interviewers already know that you do not possess a lot of workplace experience.
Therefore, they will not expect you to have all the answers.
However, they will expect you to be able to articulate your thought process. This calls for adequate preparation before the interview.
We have prepared tips on how to prepare for new grad nurse interview questions:
1. Research the institution
Before the interview, take some time to research the institution.
This will give you a better understanding of their values and what they are looking for in a new grad.
Clearly understand the vision and mission of the institution as this will give you a better idea of how you can contribute to their team.
See also: Research Nurse Interview Questions
2. Review your resume
Your resume is a great way to jog your memory on your clinical rotations and experiences.
Reviewing your resume will also help you to identify any gaps in your experience.
If there are any gaps, be prepared to explain them during the interview.
3. Understand the job description
The best way to prepare for an interview is to understand the job description.
This will give you a better understanding of the expectations of the role.
Review the qualifications and duties required for the position and be prepared to discuss how your skills and experiences match up.
4. Revise your college coursework
New grads often forget about the clinical and theoretical knowledge they acquired during their college coursework.
However, this can be very helpful during an interview.
Reviewing your coursework will help to refresh your memory of the different concepts you learned.
See also: Greatest Accomplishment Nursing Interview
5. Practice, practice, and practice
One of the best ways to prepare for an interview is to practice your answers.
This will help you to become more comfortable with the questions and help you to articulate your thoughts more clearly.
You can practice by yourself or with a friend.
See also: Nursing Interview Questions
Conclusion: Interview Questions for New Nurses
Interview questions for new grad nurses can vary depending on the institution.
However, there are some common questions that you may be asked.
These include questions about your clinical experiences, your education, and your future goals.
To prepare for these questions, it is important to conduct research on the institution, review your resume, and understand the job description.
Additionally, you should revise your college coursework and practice your answers to the questions.
By following these tips, you will be well prepared for your new grad nurse interview.
Good luck with your upcoming interview!
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