Guidelines for Interview Questions
The rule of thumb: if a question is job related, it is usually appropriate to ask. If it isn’t job related, caution
is in order. Any questions involving race, religion, gender, marital status, and so on must be avoided
on application forms or during interviews.
You may ask... Questions & Statements to stay away from...
AGE Are you 18 years or older?
How old are you?
When did you graduate from high school?
How do you feel about working for a person
younger than you?
You must be getting close to retirement age.
GENDER Do you have plans for having children?
We need someone macho for this job. Think
you can handle it?
Childcare is so hard to get. Do you have any
How would you feel working for a man/woman?
Our customers sometimes prefer to be served
by men. I hope you don’t have a problem with that.
Do you thing your woman’s intuition would come
in handy on this job?
Tell me...how did a man come to be interested in
this kind of work?
Are you able to perform the Do you have any disabilities?
duties of the job with or without
accommodation? Are you in good health?
If the applicant indicates that Do you have any physical defects that prevent you
she/he can perform the tasks with from performing certain kinds of work?
an accommodation, you may ask:
That’s a noticeable limp...Those are very thick
What accommodation would you glasses....How severe is your disability?
need in order to perform the tasks?
What is the prognosis for your condition?
Now that you have heard the
hours, leave policies, and other Will you require a special leave because of your
requirements of this position, do disability or its treatment?
you feel you will be able to meet
How many days were you absent Please list any conditions or diseases you were
from work last year? treated for in the last 3 years.
An employer may make medical How many days were you absent last year because
inquiries or require a medical of your illness?
examination of all candidates
at the state a conditional job Have you ever filed for workers' compensation?
offer is made.
Have you ever been treated by a psychiatrist or
You mentioned your daughter has multiple sclerosis.
Will that affect your attendance?
Do you have any family members or relatives who
There aren’t very many minorities in our department.
Will that be a problem for you?
You look like you have an interesting family history.
How would you define your race?
ORIENTATION Are you married?
You people are so creative, you’d be just perfect
for the job.
This is a real family-oriented department. Is that
okay with you?
After making a conditional offer, Where were you born?
an employee may inform the
applicant that they will have to I see you speak Spanish. Did you learn that in your
produce documents for work native country or school?
Of what country are you a citizen?
Will you be able to work What church do you attend?
the required schedule?
Will you need to take time off from work to
observe (name of particular religious holiday)?
Have you ever been arrested?
How do you feel about unions?
What kind of military discharge did you receive?
Do you have continuing military obligations?