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Let’s Get to Work: Using Virtual Reality to Improve Students’ Interview Skills | Academic Newsletter | Seneca College

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Let’s Get to Work: Using Virtual Reality to Improve Students’ Interview Skills

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by the Career Development Team

in the December 2019 issue

 

We are all familiar with the age-old adage “practice makes perfect.” In Career Development, this is a commonly used phrase. We support students in a variety of ways, including resume development, job search strategies and interview preparation. When students ask us how they can improve their interview skills, we tell them “practice makes perfect!”

We are putting our advice into reality – virtual reality. In partnership with HELIX and In-Stage, Career Development is thrilled to showcase a new Virtual Reality (VR) Interview Tool. We have created three stages of interviews, varying in complexity, which allow users to practice and master their skills. Students use a head-mounted display (HMD) which simulates a panel interview in an office setting. The background is so life-like that you feel like you’re actually there.

Below is a sample of a user’s view while wearing the HMD. The left side shows the interview panel and the right shows a tally of the interviewee’s metrics.

VR-Interview-Tool

Our goal is to dramatically improve the way people communicate in interviews and to support the development of their verbal skills. The VR technology provides a personalized report that includes metrics such as eye contact percentage, pace, filler word count (such as, “umm, like, so”), and more. After the VR interview, interviewees sit down with a Career Development Coordinator for a review of their results and to receive constructive feedback.

Students and Alumni are welcome to use this tool as many times as they wish. Users of the VR tool have reported it to be incredibly useful and some have been successful candidates in the actual interviews they were preparing for. A quote from a student user:

“I can’t thank you enough for guiding me throughout my interview process. I finally got a call from CIBC that they have extended an offer to me. Thank you for motivating me and believing in me.” (Seneca Student)

Since start-up, we have supported over 35 students using this tool and we anticipate further growth. Students and alumni interested in utilizing the VR Interview Tool may email Career.Development@SenecaCollege.ca.

The possibilities with this tool are endless. Stay tuned as we are just getting started!

 

Update from the Academic Newsletter editor:
As announced in the Nov. 28 issue of the SeneNews, the VR Interview Tool won this year’s King Township Women of Influence Giving Circle $10,000 grant. “Members of the Giving Circle … chose to support the VR project, which will see specialized training units installed at King to allow students to recreate key interactions such as panel interviews and elevator pitches in a VR training simulation.”

nov28-giving-circle

 

 


View the December 2019 issue of the Academic Newsletter.

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