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How to look beyond credentials and assess soft skills in international teacher selection

HR software

As an international school leader, selecting the right teachers is essential to building a vibrant school culture and the academic success of your students.

When sifting through candidate applications, it’s essential to remember that beyond degrees and certificates lie the heart and soul of education – the soft skills that allow a teacher to connect with and shape students.

In this blog , we explore how you can look beyond credentials and delve deep into assessing the soft skills of potential hires.


Understanding the importance of soft skills

Credentials undoubtedly offer a glimpse into a candidate’s academic experience and technical competencies. However, in the dynamic environment of an international school, soft skills are just as important.

These intangible qualities encompass communication, adaptability, empathy, creativity, resilience, and teamwork – the very fabric of a welcoming, thriving classroom.


Crafting a comprehensive assessment strategy

Personalised interviews: Dive into meaningful conversations that transcend the confines of resumes. Ask open-ended questions that unravel a candidate’s communication skills, problem-solving abilities, and passion for teaching.

Observation and demonstration: Invite candidates to showcase their teaching skills through mock lessons or presentations. Observe their classroom management techniques, ability to engage students, and adaptability to diverse learning styles.

Peer reviews and references: Reach out to former colleagues and supervisors to gain insights into a candidate’s collaboration skills, work ethic, and overall demeanour in a professional setting. At Schrole, references are

Scenario-based assessments: Present candidates with real-life scenarios and gauge their decision-making abilities, adaptability to change, and capacity to handle challenges with grace and resilience.


Key soft skills to look for

Empathy and emotional intelligence: Seek teachers who empathise with students’ individual needs, understand cultural nuances, and foster a nurturing learning environment.

Adaptability and flexibility: In the ever-evolving landscape of international education, prioritise candidates who embrace change, think on their feet, and thrive in diverse cultural settings.

Creativity and innovation: Encourage a spirit of creativity by selecting teachers who think outside the box, inspire curiosity, and infuse lessons with innovation and imagination.

Collaboration and teamwork: Cultivate a culture of collaboration by selecting teachers who value teamwork, actively contribute to a collective vision, and support their colleagues’ growth and development.


As you’re selecting the new international teachers for school, remember that credentials merely scratch the surface. It’s the soft skills – the empathy, adaptability, creativity, and collaboration – that truly distinguish exceptional educators.

By crafting a holistic assessment strategy and giving equal footing to evaluating soft skills, you’ll not only enrich your school community but also pave the way for a transformative educational experience that prepares students to thrive in a globalised world.

Full access

To career opportunities across the globe

$50 USD per year
Paid membership
  • Ability to create a unique educator profile that holds your references and important documents, such as teaching qualifications, all in one location.
  • Access to our entire database of 400+ international schools representing 100+ countries.
  • 5,000+ teaching vacancies every recruitment season.
  • Unlimited number of job applications.
  • Custom alerts so you’re the first to hear when your preferred roles are posted.
  • Access to virtual and in-person recruitment events with school leaders and recruiters.

Limited access

To career opportunities across the globe

Free membership
  • Ability to create a unique educator profile that holds your references and important documents, such as teaching qualifications, all in one location.
  • Access to our entire database of schools to discover your next teaching role.
  • Submission of three job applications.

Since signing up with Schrole we have been very impressed by the customer service, the modern-looking online platform, the absence of placement fees, and the various other Schrole products that we may be able to benefit from in the future. We have filled a number of positions this year with candidates from Schrole, during a particularly difficult recruitment year for us. The customer service is terrific. It seems that Schrole is leading the way in moving teacher recruitment into the 2020's.

Joe Lumsden Secondary School Principal
Stonehill International School