How To Prepare For A Nursing Interview


Hey all,

I graduate December 2010 and I would like to know how to prepare for a nursing interview.

What are some typical questions they ask?



14 Posts

I have been on several interviews recently as a new grad, depends on where you are applying.

Some hospitals ask questions like:

How do you handle stress

Where do you see yourself in 5 years, in 10 years?

How do you prioritize when you need to get more done than it seems you have time for?

How do you handle another nurse who is not communicating,is angry and you need to work with?

Tell me about a situation with an angry hostile patient, and how you turned it around?

Tell me about a situation when___ is used often for several other types of questions...such as working with ULP- LPN- how you handle those who report to you...

Then I have been at one interview for float RN where they asked many clinical type questions: What are the main symptoms for hypoglycemia?

What diet should a person be on for renal failure? What would be your discharge instructions for a person in renal failure? What are the symptoms of A-Fib? What does STEMI, CABG stand for?

so IF you know the position you are applying for- study for the main diagnoses you might be seeing on that floor.

Good luck!

amarilla, RN

318 Posts

Specializes in MS, ED. Has 2 years experience.

Hi there,

Kudos for preparing ahead of time and trying to get a handle on interview techniques now. There was a great post some time ago mentioning the various job interview articles at hospitalsoup; you may want to read through some of them for some different perspectives as well.

As for me, I had several interviews before (and after, *laugh) accepting my first hospital job. Most asked me questions which related to character and personal qualities rather than clinical situations or judgment; one nurse manager told me that I can always be taught to be a better nurse but they can't make a good egg out of a rotten apple. :lol2:

Sample questions:

'Tell me about a time when you had to fight for something. What was it, and what made you fight?'

'Tell me about the last conflict you had with someone - co-worker, family, friend. How was it resolved, or how would you resolve it?'

'Let's say you saw a co-worker ______ (usually something morally wrong or against policy). Who, if anyone, would you go to? Would you confront her, report her or keep quiet?'

'What brought you to nursing? What qualities would you say make a good nurse?'

'Tell me about a time where your opinion was in the minority. How were you able to relate to others in the majority? How could you make yourself heard while respecting others?'


I'd be remiss not to mention - at one interview, I was surprised by an entry exam, which was 25 questions testing clinical judgment and a few (simple) dosage calculations. At the hospital, we had a more extensive screening with various types of exams after being hired. I don't think it's possible to study for these tests per se, but you may want to just page through your med-surg or NCLEX review questions to refresh before hitting the interviews.

Good luck!



33 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 5 years experience.

I had my first job interview today :)

I was asked such questions as:

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

My experience during clinical rotation

What sets me apart from other candidates

Why did I apply for this particular job

If I could change anything in past job what would I change

What will it take for me to be successful on the unit

I received two set of interview questions. I feel confident about my interview, however, there are 20 applicants but one GN position. I hope my impression on her was a lasting impression.