April 30, 2021, by stykjsk
Dissertations and Projects That Influence Your Career Part 2: Interviews
By Katy Skillen, third-year MNutr Nutrition and Dietetics student
I’ve recently been given my title for my dissertation next year and I’m very excited about it! Dissertations or final year projects take up a lot of time and it becomes a huge part of your final year at university. So, it’s natural that you’ll want to mention it during any potential interviews. But how can you do this effectively to really demonstrate your abilities?
Hopefully, you’re interested in your chosen research topic, so let that shine through when you talk about it at an interview. There’s nothing employers love more than seeing someone who cares about what they do. Make it clear why you chose that topic, what inspires you about it and how proud you are of all the work you’ve done. After all, it’s much more enjoyable to work with someone who cares about what they do and is interested and excited about their work!
Realistically, our dissertations are just touching the surface of our research topic. Therefore, think about how you could further explore your research area, and show interest in learning even more. If it’s relevant, ask if there would be opportunities to learn more about this topic in the interviewer’s workplace. If possible, you could also talk about how you have personally further looked into this topic outside of your studies to show your enthusiasm.
You’ve spent months reading, researching and writing about this – so showcase all your knowledge! Don’t be afraid to highlight all the skills you’ve acquired from this, and why your dissertation is a really interesting and important piece of work. If it’s suitable, maybe bring some parts of it to your interview to show the interviewer. If your interviews are taking place after you have completed your dissertation, it’s a good idea to read through it again to refresh your memory and pick out some key parts to talk about. This ensures that you can discuss it in a way that does justice to all the hard work you’ve done.
Make it relevant
Not all of us are going into a career directly linked to our dissertations, but we can always make our dissertations relevant to an interview. If the topic itself does not relate much to an interview, then chat about how the process helped you with skills such as time management or working under pressure; these skills apply to any job! Make sure that you do your research before the interview to see if the employer is working within the field of your final year project, and if so, come with some insightful questions and discussions – this will help you to stand out!
Remember to reflect
It’s always great to show some reflection skills; this shows you are open to change and growth. Think about what you enjoyed most about your dissertation or project, what you might have wanted to do differently and how you can use the lessons that you have learned for your future career. Ask your project supervisor for advice about this, so that they can give constructive guidance for your reflection.
So, there you go- get ready to nail those interviews and impress potential employers!
Take a look at our interviews web page to find out more about the different types of interviews you may encounter and how to prepare for them. We subscribe to interview preparation tools such as Sonru. You may find a Sonru interview especially useful if you are preparing to complete a real video interview.
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