The Online Application
- Your Application
- Short-Answer Questions
- Here’s an example of an effective resume for college seniors.
- Here’s an example of an effective resume for grad students and working professionals.
On the application you'll be asked to complete three short-answer questions about why you want to join Teach For America and other topics. Make sure you answer the questions thoroughly. Review our writing proficiency standards and proofread accordingly. We will purposefully evaluate your writing ability because corps members in every subject must teach literacy and pass district certification exams in reading and writing skills.
Short Answer Dos and Don’ts
- Exemplary Responses
- Unacceptable Responses
- Clearly answer application questions, make a profound point, stay on topic
- Have a logical and insightful progression of ideas throughout the letter of intent
- Clearly explain key ideas, supporting them with well-chosen reasons, examples, or details
- Vary sentence structure effectively
- Choose words carefully and correctly
- Contain no errors in word usage, grammar, or mechanics
- Fail to answer the question or significantly veer from the initial point
- Have no clear thesis or point
- Have paragraphs with unconnected ideas
- Do not include logical transitions
- Have short, undeveloped paragraphs
- Provide inadequate reasons, examples, or details to explain ideas
- Contain multiple errors in word usage, grammar, and mechanics
The Phone Interview
The phone interview is an opportunity for you to speak with someone from Teach For America about your experiences and about our mission.
- It’s common to be nervous before an interview, but reducing distractions can make you feel more comfortable and confident. Find a quiet space to conduct the interview and be sure your phone is charged and that you’re in an area with good service.
- Print your resume and keep it in front of you during the phone interview, so you can refer to it if needed. Review the experiences you highlighted on your resume so that you can talk about them comfortably when asked. You can also review your application by visiting the Applicant Center.
The Online Activity
Applicants invited to a final interview will first need to complete the Online Activity.
- The Online Activity consists of multiple-choice and short-answer questions. Make sure to mark the deadline to complete this required activity.
- Find a private space without any distractions to ensure confidentiality while you complete the activity, and check that you have Internet access and audio capability before you start.
The Full-Day Interview
The final interview is a distinctive part of the Teach For America application process. Our interviews are only held on weekdays and you should block an entire day (9-5) for the interview. Virtual interviews are also held on weekdays, but may begin later in the day. Again, it’s common to be nervous before an interview, but many applicants come away from the interview day having had a great experience.
The first half of the day will be spent with Teach For America interviewers and other candidates as a group. Each candidate will teach a sample lesson while the rest of the group participates as “students.” Next, the entire group will work together on a problem-solving activity. After a short break, the interviewers will give a brief presentation about Teach For America.
The second half of the day will include a one-on-one interview with a Teach For America interviewer.
Full-Day Interview Tips
- Make sure you’re well-rested and eat a good breakfast so you can better maintain your focus.
- Dress professionally.
- Make arrangements to arrive at your interview site on time.
- Be yourself! When you’re relaxed and prepared, you’re most likely to perform at your best.
Occasionally, a Teach For America staff member may contact you for a short follow-up phone interview. Being asked to complete a follow-up interview is not an indication of your admissions status. We do this as part of ongoing training for our interviewers and to gather additional information if necessary.