• Support PF! Buy your school textbooks, materials and every day products via PF Here!

Job Skills Interviewing for a job with a PhD

400
6
I have a quick question about what is generally expected during an interview for a position in industry when you have a PhD. When applying for my first industry job out of grad school I gave a presentation about my work as a PhD candidate during the interview. Is this sort of presentation expected for future job interviews? I ask because the work I have done in my first job is proprietary so I cannot give the same type of presentation as I did right out of grad school.
 

Choppy

Science Advisor
Education Advisor
Insights Author
4,501
1,591
It really depends on the position you're applying for.

If you are in such a situation where you can't disclose the work you've been doing, but have to give a talk, be upfront about that and offer to give a presentation on either your PhD work, or something else you're interested in. Often, the point of such presentations in an interview is to assess your presentation skills.
 

Dr. Courtney

Education Advisor
Insights Author
Gold Member
2018 Award
2,957
1,882
I've known interviews to go in different directions. No one is gonna have gas if you can't talk about something you did due to non-disclosures.
 

Klystron

Gold Member
492
546
I have interviewed successfully for several jobs requiring PhD's. In the three successes I tailored my presentation to fit the job requirements.

For example during the on site interview process at Stanford Research Institute (SRI International), I was given a tour of the entire facility where I could question other scientists and engineers. I also had personal interviews with most of the principle researchers where I learned even more about the goals and conduct of the laboratories, how experiments are structured and funded, what data and resources could be shared, etc.

By the time I gave my presentation to the staff I had (mentally) tailored my talk to the needs and requirements of the laboratory. The Q&A following my lecture became a brainstorming session where we modified a computer network I had help design while at NASA to a lower budget series of shared networks suitable to the different research environment. I was able to judge from the earlier interviews the subjects of most interest. When I began work at SRI we essentially implemented the networks outlined in my talk with excellent results.

Not to sound manipulative but professional, by listening closely during numerous interviews I was able to pitch my lecture to the audience level. Parts of the presentation reached the computer science PhD's with appropriate explanations for mathematicians and linguists. I found that clear concise English coupled with clean white board diagrams made for a successful lecture. In a nutshell: adapt to the environment.
 

Dr Transport

Science Advisor
Gold Member
2,224
390
When I interviewed for my current position,I dug out my PhD defense presentation because I worked proprietary programs throughout my intervening work history, they didn't care, they just wanted to know if I could speak in front of an audience.
 

Want to reply to this thread?

"Interviewing for a job with a PhD" You must log in or register to reply here.

Related Threads for: Interviewing for a job with a PhD

  • Posted
Replies
12
Views
5K
  • Posted
2
Replies
39
Views
2K
Replies
3
Views
4K
Replies
6
Views
2K
  • Posted
Replies
7
Views
2K
Replies
8
Views
893
  • Posted
Replies
3
Views
3K

Physics Forums Values

We Value Quality
• Topics based on mainstream science
• Proper English grammar and spelling
We Value Civility
• Positive and compassionate attitudes
• Patience while debating
We Value Productivity
• Disciplined to remain on-topic
• Recognition of own weaknesses
• Solo and co-op problem solving
Top