Using informational interviews to support learning is a structured Career Exploration activity in which students formally interview an employer partner about his or her industry, educational and career path, and chosen profession. Students may also explore the range of career opportunities within the company or industry, opportunities for growth and the salary ranges for different occupations.
Designed to meet specific learning objectives, informational interviews are educationally rich, are tied to the curriculum, and help students connect what they’re learning in school with the workplace. Unlike a guest speaker activity, where speakers usually address a group in the classroom, informational interviews are one-to-one interactions and generally take place at the company’s workplace. They may also be conducted via telephone – ideally utilizing Facetime or Skype. In some cases, hybrid informational interviews may be conducted via Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet or some other technology; are conducted online, and students participate in a remote classroom. There are also virtual simulations available where a recording of a live informational interview, conducted by a teacher or small group of students, can be viewed online and serve as a foundation for an activity and/or discussion in the classroom.
Informational interviews are one activity in the continuum of authentic work-based experiences provided to all students engaged in career-related programs or course of study in New York City schools.
*In New York State, this includes certified work-based learning coordinators and others who facilitate, arrange and support work-based learning activities for students.