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Competency Based Testing

Competency-based interviews (sometimes referred to as structured or situational interviews) are designed to test a range of particular skills or competencies. In response the candidate provides evidence in their answer of a time when they demonstrated that particular competency. In a competency-based interview each question targets a skill needed for the job. The interviewer has a list of set questions and your answers will be compared against pre-determined criteria and marked accordingly.

Competency interviews work on the principle that past behaviour is the best indicator of future performance. This poses a particular challenge for young applicants without work experience.  That said, an examination of your life to date may reveal more experience than you realise.
Competency-based interviews are gaining in popularity and are now used by employers across all sectors. They are particularly favoured by large graduate recruiters. Hence, the reason why interview preparation is so crucial.

Competency-based interviews differ from normal or unstructured interviews, which tend to be more informal. In unstructured interviews employers often ask a set of random, open-ended questions relevant to the job, such as 'why did you apply for this job?' and 'what can you do for our business?' to get an overall impression of who you are.

In real terms many employers adopt a combination of both approaches.

Key competencies regularly pursued by employers include:

  • context awareness
  • communication
  • conflict resolution
  • decision-making
  • initiative
  • independence
  • flexibility
  • leadership
  • problem solving
  • organisation
  • resilience
  • adaptability
  • teamwork

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Study Skills and Mindset Programmes
Career Guidance
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Our Clients

I wish I had this talk

I wish I had this talk when my daughter who is now in Junior Cert, was in First Year.

Parent, Iniskeen, Co. Monaghan
Our son was supported through a tough period

In hindsight our son did his LC too young He was immature from the start. Within weeks of commencing College he began to experience anxiety and dropped out. We didn't know how to help him. He met with Fidelma who managed to get him to talk and discuss his feelings. She carried out a series of comprehensive tests to identify his strengths and needs, his values, interests, personality and skills. She helped him find his motivation again and referred him to an associate for stress-related issues. I strongly recommend Fidelma for career and education support.

Galway city mother


Switching on for Learning: A Student Guide to Exam & Career Success

Written by Dr. Fidelma Healy Eames & Ms. Sara Hannafin, this text is based on the premise that students learn differently. Beginning with a chapter on helping you to figure out how you learn best, it provides you with a range of strategies and mindset approaches to make your study and learning more effective. It meets the 'learning to learn' intentions of the curriculum.

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Successful Studying: Towards Becoming an Independent Learner

Successful Studying: Towards Becoming an Independent Learner is a 20 page Student booklet  designed by Fidelma Healy Eames, PhD. It provides a menu of activities that supports the work of our Study Skills & Mindset courses at second-level, based on our book 'Switching on for Learning: A Student Guide to Exam & Career Success'.

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As parents our intention is to give our children "roots" and give them "wings". Strong roots to help them believe in themselves and to give them a good start in life. Wings to help them set out on their own and become independent.

This journey is not always plain sailing for every child or young person. Some benefit from individual help from time to time. Study & Careers believes in the innate talent and uniqueness of every child. It knows that timely help can enable your learner to overcome challenges they face along the way. To do so, it offers courses for you the parent and one-to-one private consultations to support your student.

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