Pulling your hair out over selection criteria? How to nail them

If you’re having trouble answering specific selection criteria for a job, a scholarship or any other position, here is how to leverage your hard work and nail it:

Step 1

Copy and paste the selection criteria into a document and write your answer underneath each criteria heading. Applying online? Draft in Word first.

Step 2

Start your answer with a positive claim: Eg “I gained considerable experience in customer service while working in hospitality for three years.”

Step 3

Provide evidence of how your skills and experience meet the criteria. Do this using actual, specific examples using the STAR method:


Set the context for your example: who, what, when and where

T – [TASK]

What your role was   


What you did


What you achieved/learnt


  • Focus on what you did (not your team). The people looking over your application want to see what you did and how you responded to certain challenges.
  • Avoid general claims that are not backed up with an example
  • Answer ALL criteria (both essential and desirable) – they can’t review something that isn’t in your application.
  • If there are two parts to a criterion address both in your answer
  • Proofread for typos and grammatical mistakes.

Follow all these steps and you should have a cracker application.

Happy writing and good luck!