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Preparing for interviews

SRNA   (503 Views | 6 Replies)

asd asd has 4 years experience as a BSN and specializes in Cardiac icu.

391 Profile Views; 34 Posts

Anyone have any tips on preparing for interviews? I've heard reviewing ccrn material and knowing in depth info on needs given. Any other advice ?

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HappyCCRN1 has 6 years experience as a BSN and specializes in Burn and Surgical/Trauma ICU.

56 Posts; 751 Profile Views

I found this post very helpful while preparing for my interviews.

I also searched for threads from years past on interview styles for each school that was interviewing me. Some schools change it up every year and it's best to be prepared for everything, but information can be anxiety relieving. 

If there is someone you can practice with, I'd recommend doing so. It certainly helped me. You don't want to sound rehearsed (they'll see right through that), but I found it helpful to say certain points out loud that I knew would come up in conversation. Or that I wanted to bring up.

I brought with me copies of all of my transcripts, certifications, licenses, test scores, etc. Everything that I submitted to them online plus things that might have been pending. In my case, it was completion of a Chemistry course and my GRE scores. I was able to pull them out and hand them over when they asked about those holes in my application. They seemed impressed by that preparedness. 

Be genuine. And through the nerves, be personable. In my opinion, it all comes down to the interview. Everyone interviewing looks exactly the same on paper, so you need to make yourself stand out. If you can shove the nerves down and let your personality come through, I believe that has a great effect. The two interviews that I felt the most comfortable and confident in, where the conversations just flowed naturally, were the ones I received acceptance.

Good luck!

Edited by HappyCCRN1

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shanneliz123 has 3 years experience as a BSN and specializes in SRNA.

255 Posts; 2,841 Profile Views

I made a post a few months back on how I got I to CRNA school! On the first page of comments, I posted pictures of the books I used to study. Second page of comments, I actually attached a copy of the study guide I made to help prepare! It’s based on trauma, but there’s good information and pictures in there to help you with medications normally used in the ICU! Good luck 😊

 

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85 Posts; 819 Profile Views

I think you’re off to a great start with CCRN material. I’ll list examples from my two interviews, which resulted in two acceptances. Most of all, be honest and explain what you do know. “I do not know the answer, but if I were to think about it, this is what I am thinking...” or “I do not know the answer, but I’d reference peers, reputable sites, textbooks, etc to find the answer”. Anything you mention is free game for them. So, don’t bring something up you cannot give an explanation or expand on. This is considered “leading your interview”.  Some interviews are primarily behavioral or personality based questions to get to know you, and others can have quizzes. Mine were mostly clinical-bard Qs  

MICU is my specialty. When asked what patient population I see most, I said sepsis because I know I know sepsis like the back of my hand. I know the pathophys and the drugs we give (how they work in the body, why we use that specifically, and what to expect as a response from the pt or what adverse effects you could see), and labs we consider. Think of your specialty and what your answer may be, almost like your own case study of a patient. Be able to explain to show your critical thinking if asked, don’t just practice regurgitating. I studied cardiac a LOT. I was asked the formula for cardiac output and to calculate a MAP. What contributes to CO? I was also asked to explain the flow of blood in the heart and the components of a NSR (P-wave = atrial depol., etc...). Also was probed on critical thinking during or post-intubation: how to verify placement w/out X-ray (use your stetho scope, chest rise, pulse ox readings...). How does a pulse ox work (is it arterial, venous, or capillary?)? What kind of sedation do you commonly use in your icu? Tell me about that drug? What can you give to reverse it? What if your pt is too sedated or on too much analgesia, and your BP is too low? How do you fix that? I said I would stimulate them because I would not want to narcan them and take away all of their pain and make them stressed out. Then they asked about adverse effects of Narcan taking away ALL of their pain and also you can have flash pulmonary edema).

They may ask you super weird or random Qs to see how you respond. Will you shut down? Will you get flustered or defensive? Will you say anything just to say something? They will try to push you intentionally to see how you will respond. What’s your support system like? Would you mind moving? Blah blah blah. Dress your best! If you’re wondering if you should wear a suit jacket or blazer, the answer is yes. Everyone I have seen at interviews did. I also printed out my certifications, resume, personal statement, and transcripts to have on hand just in case. Think of some questions you’d like to ask the interviewers too at the end (how do you support your students, can I come to lab on my own time to practice, how much is the deposit, etc). I shook everyone’s hand and sincerely thanked them for the opportunity. 

Hope this wasn’t too much. I wanted to share what was helpful to me or what I wish I had known in advance. Good luck!! 🙂 

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asd asd has 4 years experience as a BSN and specializes in Cardiac icu.

34 Posts; 391 Profile Views

So during the interview they said I'll be able to ask questions, what would the appropriate questions be?

I'm planning to ask about what kind of clinicals/ cases they get, etc. 

- how much experience we may get placing invasive lines, epidurals, etc.

- when clinicals begin, is it front loaded etc

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asd asd has 4 years experience as a BSN and specializes in Cardiac icu.

34 Posts; 391 Profile Views

Also I read a guide saying to come in a suit, is this over dressed?

The interview will be in front of a panel and then change into scrubs, should I got business casual or more formal?

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TPN1986 has 8 years experience as a RN and specializes in SRNA CEN CCRN-CMC.

82 Posts; 1,130 Profile Views

1 hour ago, asd asd said:

Also I read a guide saying to come in a suit, is this over dressed?

The interview will be in front of a panel and then change into scrubs, should I got business casual or more formal?

This is the most important interview of your career. Wear a suit.

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