Blog post by current LLB Law with Study Abroad student, Rosie Humphris as she explains her steps for success in preparing for online assessment centres.
Following the successful completion of an assessment centre with a top London law firm, DLA Piper, I was asked to comment on the how participating in lectures gave me the skills to successfully obtain a Summer Internship.
Participation within lectures can sometimes seem trivial. So long as we attend and listen to what is being said, surely this is enough? With COVID-19 changing the way we work to online platforms, it can be very easy to fall into a routine of hiding behind our computer screens. We sit there with our screens off, muted, and hope for the best that the lecturer doesn’t know how to implement breakout rooms.
Upon reflection, participation and discussion within lectures has been profoundly important to my success. Discussion in lectures enables you to build a wide range of skills which align with the skills needed to be successful in assessment centres. As a result, I thought it would be worth sharing these with you.
Firstly, confidence is key.
Assessment centres usually involve interaction with a range of individuals from other students to partners of the law firm. As well as this, they often encompass completing tasks that you are unfamiliar with. By participating in discussions in lectures and tutorials, this will inevitably boost your confidence in talking aloud to a range of people, enable you to build ideas on topics that are new to you and think on the spot about your opinions.
Secondly, obtaining the skills to be a good listener is crucial.
A substantial part of succeeding in an assessment centre is being able to show the assessors that you are able to work well with others, listening to them and building on what they have to say. This aligns with the central role of discussion in lectures and tutorials. Being able to take in another student’s idea, form an opinion and present that opinion to the group is exactly the opportunity that lectures offer you.
Finally, as simple as it may sound, being able to virtually present yourself well is important.
Assessors are unlikely to be impressed by a black screen. They want to see who you are as a person and a lot can often be told by someone’s body language. Whilst it may seem daunting to turn on your cameras in lectures, this simple act will prepare you well for interviews and assessment day activities where you are no longer able to hide behind a screen and have to present yourself well. Whilst we may not all feel comfortable broadcasting how our bedrooms look to the public or our younger siblings’ new TikTok dance they are completing behind us, there are a lot of people in the same position and we all understand.
Overall, discussion in lectures and tutorials goes beyond helping you succeed in your degree. With many of us starting to job-hunt, the skills built from discussions are key to our success. In an unprecedented time where it is easy to fall into the trap of hiding behind our screens, the skills that can be built from discussion must be acknowledged, encouraging the simple click of the ‘share video/audio’ button.
Find resources to help build your skills with interviews, assessment centres and more on the Law School Careers and Employability Blackboard page.