Interview Prep: Why do you want to be a teaching assistant?

03/08/2022 | All

When applying for a role as a teaching assistant, you want to demonstrate to potential employers that you are committed and dedicated to the role. Employers looking to fill a teaching assistant position want someone who is passionate about education and is intentional about the work they do. That is why it is so important to reflect on your aspirations for the job before your interview. In this blog, we will help you to answer one of the most important TA interview questions: why do you want to be a teaching assistant?

Why employers ask you why you want to be a teaching assistant

Employers ask this question to learn if you have the right intentions for their position. This question is almost certain to come up in your interview as it helps the interviewer determine if you are truly interested in working with students and helping them thrive in the classroom. Quality educators and passionate about working with students and supporting them in their education. Use your answer to demonstrate that you are the right fit for the role and eager to help their school better serve students. 

How to answer why you want to be a teaching assistant

Although the question may seem overwhelming, following these steps can help you to effectively answer this question:

Read through the job description

When preparing for this interview question, carefully read through the teaching assistant job description provided by your employer. This can help you indicate what skills or qualifications to incorporate in your answer. Get to know what kind of teaching assistant the school is looking for and tailor your answer to this description. You may also want to do additional research about the school you are applying to which can help you come up with a more informed answer.

Reflect on your intentions

Think about why you got into this career in the first place. As an educator, you can make a real meaningful impact on a student’s life. Focus on why you really wanted this rewarding career path. Emphasise how you want to build a positive learning environment for the students that you work with. You can also discuss why you think it is important for teachers to have staff who are willing to assist them.

Share what value you can add

Impress your interviewer by explaining what value you hope to add to their team. This is your opportunity to discuss some of your greatest skills and strengths as a teaching assistant. Show that you are capable of this important supporting role. Make sure your answer is a balance of what you can provide for both the students and the teacher you will be working under. You want to show that while you have the interest of the students in your mind, you also want to help your teacher do their best. 

Explain your goals

Showing that you are a goal-orientated candidate can help you to stand out among other candidates. Highlight what goals you have for this role. By showing that you hope to accomplish your goals right away, an interviewer may feel eager to get you onboarded soon. When sharing your goals, focus less on your own benefits and more on what you hope to accomplish for the school. Demonstrate how you entered this career for selfless reasons and that it is your mission to provide assistance to students and teachers. 

Be positive!

Show that you want to be a positive presence in the classroom. While this kind of career can be challenging at times, use your interview answer to show that you have the patience and dedication to stay upbeat and energetic in the classroom. Educators can work long hours, making it important to show you will have a positive attitude throughout everything. Overall, explain that you are an enjoyable person to work and collaborate with. 

Example answers

There are several ways you can choose to answer the question ‘why do you want to be a teaching assistant?’. Have a look at some of our example answers to help guide your answer:

Example 1

“I would like to become a teaching assistant because of my genuine passion and interest in serving as a positive role model for students. I am aware of the importance of children having positive influences around them from an early age and would love to have an impact myself. I want to help teachers create a thriving classroom and will make sure that every student feels comfortable and safe at school. I will model good behaviour in the classroom and encourage students to treat their teachers and peers with the upmost respect.”

“I feel that I am the right fit for this career because I am dedicated and patient. I want to create meaningful connections with students and I find that by being patient, many children eventually learn to contribute to an effective learning environment. I hope to be part of creating an environment where everyone can learn and grow.”

Example 2

“I want to become a TA because the thought of every day looking different excites me. I thrive off a fast-paced working environment. I am someone who is creative and collaborative, making me an excellent asset for a classroom of children with an abundance of energy. I have the drive and the focus to help these students channel their energy into productive learning.”

“Along with the need for an active workplace, I want to embark on a career as a teaching assistant because I understand that teachers need better help! It is my goal to closely support teachers, offering them the assistance and support they need to effectively educate. I am someone who is willing to put in the hard work and effort to make a meaningful impact on my students.”

Example 3

“When looking into what career I wanted to pursue, I knew that I needed to do something that would involve me making a real difference in someone’s life. As a teaching assistant, I would have the opportunity to be a meaningful part of a student’s childhood. I want to be that person in their life who encouraged them to try their best and challenge themselves”.

How can i-teachers help you to become a teaching assistant?

At i-teachers, we specialise in placing talented graduates in Graduate Teaching Assistant roles in a wide variety of subjects areas. We work with a wide range of Primary, Secondary and SEN specialist schools across the UK to provide you the perfect role in the perfect environment!

i-teachers Step into Teaching programme

At i-teachers, we aim to support you and allow you to explore teaching roles with our ‘Step into Teaching’ programme to support all graduate roles in education. Our experienced education consultants will place you in a paid teaching assistant position that is perfectly suited to your skill set, in a school that suits your personality. We believe that practical experience is invaluable and learning from teaching experts is key. On your ‘step into teaching’ programme you will get to experience the life of a teacher or teaching assistant, and truly impact the lives of pupils, whilst in a fully supportive environment. It is fantastic work experience both for your own personal development as well as for your CV, and you can earn whilst you learn!

Take a look at some of our current Graduate Teaching Assistant roles now, or contact us for more information!