aerial photo of the campus in the fall season

EDI-Related Interview Questions

Teaching and Mentoring

  • How do you/would you work with students from diverse cultural backgrounds?
  • Tell us your background on teaching and mentoring experiences with students from diverse cultural backgrounds?
  • Please comment on how you will contribute to VIU's EDI Action Plan regarding the educational benefits and commitment to cultural diversity.
  • Besides teaching and research, can you give us an example of how you may contribute to student diversity and mentoring?
  • Has diversity played a role in shaping your teaching and advising styles?  If so, how?
  • Please comment on the benefits of racial, ethnic and gender diversity in the student body and the faculty?
  • How do you adapt your teaching to meet the different cultures and learning styles of your students?
  • Tell us about your collaborative work with Elders, Faculty, Community Partners, Indigenous agencies and organizations.
  • Do you find students from different cultural backgrounds have different learning needs? If yes, how do you address these needs?
  • Practices and outcomes related to diversity and inclusion are vital measures of institutional excellence.  How would you support creating a culture of organizational learning and continuous improvement at the faculty level?
  • What experience have you had in increasing research and grant funding opportunities, including diversity/inclusion-related outcomes?
  • What would you do to motivate and engage students, faculty and/or staff in learning varied perspectives of diversity and inclusion?
  • Describe your experience in serving or teaching underrepresented communities.
  • How do you seek opportunities to improve the learning environment to better meet the needs of students from all over the world and from students who have been historically marginalized in Canada, such as Indigenous peoples, Racialized Persons, Persons with disabilities, Persons identifying as 2SLGBTQ+, and Women?
  • What is your method of communication with students who are different from you?  How do you convey thoughts, ideas, or adverse conclusions?
  • Describe your experience or explain how you have been educated to understand the history of Indigenous peoples and other marginalized communities in Canada.
  • Describe your experience in serving or teaching underrepresented communities.
  • What ideas do you have for educating students about diversity?
  • Can you provide a personal statement on diversity and inclusion?
  • Leadership

  • In your experience, what are the challenges faced by members of equity-seeking groups in the workplace? What strategies have you used to address these challenges, and how successful were those strategies?
  • In your work, what have you done that is effective when serving a diverse population? Give us one example of when you delivered this effective service. What did you see as especially important? Follow-up: What difference did your understanding make to your employee or student in this instance?
  • What challenges do you feel our sector faces as we move into the future, especially regarding human rights and diversity?    
  • Describe your experiences in strategic planning related to diversity.
  • Describe your experiences in assessing diversity initiatives and their outcomes.
  • How will you contribute to the institution's effort to enhance diversity in a meaningful way?
  •  What does it mean for you to have a commitment to diversity? How have you demonstrated that commitment, and how would you see yourself demonstrating it at VIU?
  • What do you see as the most challenging aspects of an increasingly diverse academic community, and what steps have you taken or plan to take to meet such challenges?
  • Suppose that you encounter a pervasive belief that diversity and excellence are somehow in conflict.  How do you conceptualize the relationship between diversity and excellence?  What kinds of leadership efforts would you undertake to encourage a commitment to excellence through diversity?
  • How would you help to create and sustain an organizational environment that acknowledges and celebrates diversity and employs inclusive practices throughout its daily operations?
  • What steps would you take to create a supportive and respectful climate that values differing perspectives and experiences?  How would you measure the success of this objective?
  • When have you previously been involved in creating meaningful dialogue between and among groups that increases understanding of varied perspectives and the nature of social and economic inequalities?  How would you incorporate this into your leadership practices?
  • What do you see as the most challenging aspects of an increasingly diverse academic community? What initiatives have you taken to meet such challenges?
  • How would you work with people under your supervision to foster a climate receptive to diversity in the department, the curriculum, staff meetings, printed materials, initiatives, etc.?
  • In what ways have you integrated multicultural issues as part of your professional development?
  • Practices and outcomes related to diversity and inclusion are vital measures of institutional excellence.  How would you support creating a culture of organizational learning and continuous improvement at the faculty level?

Relationship Building

  • Tell us how you work with people to create or foster diversity in the workplace.
  • Tell me about a time when you contributed to diversity and inclusion. Perhaps you were working with others in your department or on a committee. We'd like to hear about a situation like that. What were the circumstances at the time? What specific actions or steps did you take to handle the situation? With whom did you interact? Share with us the outcome of that situation.
  • Tell us about a time when you had to work with someone who had the direct opposite personality of yours?
  • Give an example of how you walk in the shoes of people we serve and those with whom we work.
  • Tell us about a time you took responsibility/accountability for an action that may have been offensive to the recipient and how you did that.
  • Give examples of times when your values and beliefs impacted your relationships with your colleagues.
  • Describe a situation where you encountered a conflict with a person from a different cultural background than yours. How did you handle the situation? (Please be specific)

Cultural Agility

  • Share with us a work experience in which you had to speak up and challenge a viewpoint or business practice even though you knew it would be controversial and could have far-reaching consequences. What motivated you to take action? What was the hardest part? Follow-up: How will this experience influence your approach in this position?
  • How would you define diversity? Please provide examples of how you have demonstrated commitment to diversity in prior situations.
  • Discuss your views on diversity and inclusion, including how you will support a respectful and inclusive workplace.
  • We have a large population of Indigenous students at VIU. Please provide insight into the implications and historical experiences of Indigenous people in Canada, and how this awareness influences your practice (with Indigenous clients?)
  • In your experience, what are the challenges faced by members of historically underrepresented groups in the workplace?  What strategies have you used to address these challenges, and how successful were those strategies?
  • What efforts have you made or been involved with to foster multicultural understanding and cultural competence?
  • Please describe how you would work to create a campus environment that is welcoming, inclusive and increasingly diverse.
  • Discuss post-secondary education's role in supporting the right of Indigenous self-determination in British Columbia. Identify key elements for improving post-secondary outcomes for British Columbia's Indigenous learners?
  • Talk about a time that you successfully adapted to a culturally different environment.
  • What opportunities have you had working and collaborating in diverse, multicultural and inclusive settings?
  • Is there an example of how you have demonstrated a commitment to diversity in a prior situation?
  • What is your definition of diversity?  How do you encourage people to honour the uniqueness of each individual? How do you challenge stereotypes and promote sensitivity and inclusion?
  • What expertise do you have in areas of study that examine diverse identities and cultures?

Teamwork

  • Tell us about a time when you changed your style to work more effectively with a person from a different background.
  • Describe the most challenging person you've ever had to deal with at work.
  • Describe a time when you needed to work cooperatively with someone that did not share the same ideas as you.
  • Give an example of a time when you had to adjust your personal style to work with a coworker successfully.
  • Talk about how you responded to a coworker who made an insensitive remark.

Learning and Growth

  • How does your own identity impact your work with a diverse staff and student body?
  • How has diversity played a role in shaping how you communicate and interact with others in the workplace?
  • Describe a specific situation in which you worked with a diverse group of people or person over a period of time. What did you learn from this experience?
  • What are some specific things you will do within the next two years to further your development in cultural competency?

Communication

  • How do you ensure that communication is effective when interacting with a person from a different culture than your own?
  • Describe how you function and communicate effectively and respectfully within the context of varying beliefs, behaviours, and backgrounds.