GTE interview – Admissions – Southern Cross University

What is a GTE interview?

A GTE interview is the last stage of the GTE assessment process. Not everyone is required to undergo a GTE interview. The need to attend a GTE interview is determined by the risk level of your home country and sometimes particular areas within your home country. Your GTE interview is very important. It is the final stage in the GTE process and will determine whether or not you pass the GTE requirements of the University. You will only be given the opportunity of ONE GTE interview.

You are expected to prepare for your interview and be able to provide evidence that you have conducted diligent research into your course, your campus, your finances and life in Australia.

We strongly recommend that you read all of the information on this page and watch BOTH of the videos below. They have been specifically designed to help give you the best chance of passing your GTE interview.

Tips for a successful GTE interview

To help you prepare for the GTE interview, we suggest you are familiar with the following points:

  • The structure of your course, including the units you will study
  • Why you have chosen this course and how it will help you find a job when you return to your country
  • The employment conditions and expected salary in your home country
  • The cost of your course and your living expenses in Australia
  • Your campus and its location and why you have chosen that campus in particular – you should be able to explain what you know about your campus and its surroundings.
  • The education system in your country compared to the education system in Australia
  • Australian life and culture

How can I prepare for my GTE interview?

If you use the tips below as a guide, you should have no problem passing the GTE interview. It is all about being prepared.

  • Research. You cannot pass your GTE interview without research. To prove that you are both a genuine student and a Genuine Temporary Entrant, you must provide evidence that you have thoroughly researched your course, your university, your campus, your finances, employment conditions in your home country and life and culture in Australia.
  • Be specific. Making general comments will not result in a good interview score. For example, if you are asked about the difference between the education system in your home country and the education system in Australia, it would NOT be suitable to simply say “the Australian education system is more about practical and in my home country it is more about theory”. Even if this is true, you need to explain this. Your answer needs to show that you understand what you are being asked.
  • Give examples. When answering a question, be prepared to give examples where it is appropriate to do so. General comments without examples will not result in a good score.
  • Its about the facts. Always be prepared to back up what you say with evidence. For example, if you were asked “what can you tell us about Australian culture?”, it would not be enough to say that “Australians are generally easy-going and friendly”. We would expect you to provide evidence. Who told you that? Where did you read it? What information source did you get that from?
  • Speak clearly. Remember that you will be speaking with someone who may not understand your slang. Speak in formal English and ensure that you speak clearly and not too softly.
  • Do not read. The interviewer will be watching you for signs of reading your answers. It is expected that you will have prepared for your interview. You must NOT read or refer to any notes or websites during your GTE interview. Your interview may be terminated if you are found to be reading. It is expected that you should evidence of independent understanding and not reading off notes.
  • Be calm. We understand that you may be nervous, however it is important that you remain calm and think clearly so you can express your answers well.
  • It’s ok to ask for clarification. If you don’t understand the question, it is fine to tell the interviewer. Feel free to ask the interviewer to repeat the question if you didn’t hear it clearly or to explain the question if you are not sure exactly what they are asking.

Some sample questions

The following are examples of actual questions you will be asked at your GTE interview:

Tell us about the structure of this course and specifically what you like about the structure.

What are we looking for here?

To answer this question successfully, you will need to show that you understand the structure of your intended course and the units you will study in it. You should understand the difference between ‘core’ units and ‘elective’ units, for example. If your course offers a Major, you should be aware of what Majors are offered and which one you intent to take and why you want to take it. You should be aware of how many units in total you will have to study and  be able to comment on some of those units.

You should also be able to tell us why you like this structure and tell us what specifically appeals to you about it. The question is designed to show us that you have a good understanding of your course and its structure.

Tell us about the three main reasons you chose SCU.

What are we looking for here?

To answer this question successfully, you will clearly explain the three main reasons you chose Southern Cross University for your studies. It is not enough to simply list three reasons – you must explain them. There is no right or wrong answer here, it is all about you showing your understanding of the university and your reasons for choosing to study here.

You should tell us why these three reasons made you choose Southern Cross University over all other universities you researched.

Tell us what you know about Australian culture. How do you plan to adapt to the culture here?

It is expected that you will have done some research on the culture of Australia. Coming to another country is a big step and we would hope that you clearly understand something about what it is like to live here. What do you know about Australians and their way of life? How do you know this? It is important that you don’t just make generic comments such as “Australians are friendly people” – this is not enough. Your answer should make it clear where you got your information from and show that you understand what life in Australia is like. This should include what you know about the study culture as well as general life.

It is important to note that this question has two parts. After you have explained what you know about Australian culture, you should explain how you intend to adapt to it when you are here. It will obviously be different to what you are used to in your home country, so what do you intend to do to make sure that you get used to things here?

An example of a GTE interview - important tips.

The video below is an example of a GTE interview. It is NOT based on actual questions from the interview, but it gives you some excellent tips about ‘good’ answers compared to ‘not so good’ answers. We strongly recommend that you watch both this video AND the one above to ensure you understand what is required at your GTE interview. Good luck!