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How Tests & Interviews Work
Our entry-level training helps individuals seeking diplomatic or internationally focused careers with the federal government. Described below are how the competition works, the services we offer to assist you, and our client success rate.
The Foreign Service Competition
Several thousand applicants will enter the Post-Secondary Recruitment campaign to be hired by Global Affairs Canada (GAC--formerly DFAIT, the Department of foreign Affairs, Trade and Development, and CIDA, the Canadian International Development Agency) or Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC--formerly CIC, Citizenship and Immigration Canada). Rotational and non-rotational positions in Global Affairs include Political Economic officers, International Trade officers, Management Consular officers, International Development officers, Commerce officers and Policy officers. IRCC recruits rotational Immigration officers separately for its Foreign Service.
The initial online PSEE tests for these positions, when intake exercises occur, are normally in late October.
Public Service Entrance Exam (PSEE) Sub-test 1 (Reasoning) – a multiple-choice problem-solving and reasoning-ability test with four basic types of questions
Public Service Entrance Exam (PSEE) Sub-test 2 (Judgment) – a multiple-choice situational test with options in graduated scales of effectiveness or
Note: There is no longer--and has not been for years—a separate, knowledge-based
Foreign Service exam with international affairs questions.
Candidates must pass the online PSEE tests before advancing in the competition.
Note: In the Fall of 2019 the online test system failed so only supervised tests were carried out.
The subsequent supervised in-person PSEE tests typically written a few weeks later are:
Another PSEE Reasoning test, the same as the online Sub-test 1, but with more questions
Another PSEE Judgment test, the same as the online Sub-test 2, but with fewer questions.
Candidates selected from the larger pool of those who pass the in-person tests, and from possible computer-screening for selected attributes, are invited to the personal interview process.
In the personal interview you are given:
Hypothetical situations and asked how you would deal with them
Past-experience questions in relation to competency-based behavioural criteria
A possible role-play exercise in which you interact with an assessor
A prompt about your reasons for wanting to join government and personal suitability for the job
The group simulation exercise, no longer used by IRCC but standard for GAC, involves several candidates in a session that assesses analytical and communications skills, ability to work under pressure, teamwork, and common sense.
A short writing exercise using varied formats has been included in the past by IRCC and sometimes GAC either before or on interview day.
The interview assessment board evaluates overall potential based on intellectual, verbal and interpersonal skills known as “competencies”. International affairs knowledge questions are not part of the interview.
The key to your success is knowing what to expect on tests and how to approach the behavioural interview process effectively.
The PSEE study materials for the online and in-person tests [click here] provide current, comprehensive information to help you focus your preparation, save time, and perform well.
Our clients range from undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students in all disciplines to individuals already in the work force, including many professionals and government employees interested in switching careers.
Why Trust Our Services?
Outstanding Success Rate
The success rate of our clients in obtaining Foreign Service and related international positions is more than triple that of those who do not use our help. In real numbers,
over 850 former clients work in Global Affairs and IRCC.
Established Reputation No service offered by government, universities or the private sector—past or present, in North America or abroad—matches our expertise or coaching record over the past 25+ years. Please take the time to read the testimonials sent to us by clients and supporters displayed under Client and Supporter Comments [click here].
Save time and significantly improve your chances to be selected for the diplomatic service or related international career. Contact Us today [click here]. The advice and help we provide to you will be invaluable.