How to prepare for your scholarship interview

On this page

We will interview you in a meeting or by calling you

We will contact you to agree on a place, date and time for your interview, which may be at your local New Zealand Embassy or High Commission, or by phone or by online video conference.

Two of our representatives conduct the interview over 40 minutes. The interview has six questions. We allow about four to six minutes for each question. Your answers will reveal if you are suitable for a New Zealand Scholarship.

Typical interview questions

The interviewers will ask you about your study programme

They will ask about:

  • your preferred courses i.e. the study programme(s) on your application form
  • how your preferred courses will improve the social and economic development of your country
  • your commitment to and motivation for improving your country

PhD applicants must also prove that you have a PhD supervisor, or you are close to confirming a PhD supervisor.

Prior to the interview, we will want to see emails between you and a suitable PhD supervisor, confirming that:

  • your PhD research topic is viable, and
  • they are willing to be your PhD supervisor.

The interviewers will assess your communication skills

They will give you a question before the interview so you can prepare. You don’t need to bring notes or a presentation.

The interviewers will ask you two questions about how you cope with challenges

You can’t prepare for these questions before the interview. We will present a hypothetical scenario of something that could happen, and then ask you how you would deal with this scenario.

The interviewers will ask you a question about your resilience

Before the interview, you should think about some examples of when you have been resilient. A good way to describe your example is to use the C-A-R method – Context, Action, Result. You can research this method before the interview.


We use cookies and other tracking technologies to improve your browsing experience on our website, to analyze our website traffic, and to understand where our visitors are coming from. You can find out more information on our Privacy Page.