Many educational institutions have a complex application process in place for the students. You’ll have to fill in an application form, and often also interview in front of a small admission committee (whether you’ll have to pass this step depends on the level of interest for the course or study program). In any case, some questions repeat on virtually every application form. One of them (at least one, can be more) is always related to your goals and motivation, that means why you want to study the course/program, and what you hope to learn, or achieve, after taking it. And while it seems a fairly simple question to answer, many people struggle with it. Why do they struggle, and what should you say to get in? We will try to find the answers on the following lines.

Before we proceed to the 7 sample answers, I want you to remember one crucial point: The course you are going to take should not be just a means to an end. What I try to say here is that writing that your main goal (or the thing you want to achieve after taking the course) is getting a degree, diploma, certification, etc, is not a good answer. Because a degree or a certification is a certain badge (and who doesn’t hunt for all sorts of badges all their life?), but it isn’t the core of the course, and should not be the thing you want to achieve. Having a certification simply reflects that you mastered something, some subject or topic or skill, and exactly this subject or topic or skill should resonate in your answer.

Let’s have a look at the list of sample answers. I tried to include on my list answers for a variety of situations and courses, as well as some unconventional answers. They should work well also for an Indian alternative of this question, the “What do you hope to achieve after taking this course?“. I think at least one of the answers will resonate with you, and with the message you try to get over in the interviews, or on your application form. Enjoy!


7 sample answers to “What do you hope to learn from this course?” question

  1. Once I finish this course I hope to be able to help people in need, in any emergency situation. We live in a world full of accidents and problems, and one should be able to act quickly and help save lives, should he find himself in such a situation. Another thing I hope to learn, more on a mindset level, is taking initiative. I’ve been often passive in my life, letting others to take lead and even decide for me. I want to change this and I hope this course is an ideal opportunity to improve on this weakness, and finally sit at the steering wheel of my life.
  2. I want to learn to communicate with other people in French, and also to be finally able to read works of my favorite writers like Saint-Exupery and Sartre in their native language. My admiration for French culture know no boundaries, and I am confident that speaking French will allow me to experience it more profoundly and intimately. Maybe it is an ambitious goal, but you can be sure I want to give this French course my 100%, and learn as much as I can during the year.
  3. I just hope to learn to take care of all duties of a medical assistant. Sure enough you can get this job even without certification, as many places lack medical assistants. But I am a perfectionist and want to do my job as well as I can, that’s why I decided to enroll in this program. I sincerely believe that I will be able to do a great job as an MA after finishing this course. Have the right mindset and motivation, the only thing I lack is knowledge and experience. And I believe to gain both with you.
  4. My greatest ambition is to overcome my fear from public speaking. You know, I dream of a successful career in PR, in some big corporation or NGO, simply having an impact. But as soon as I stand in front of a group of people, however small, and should say something, my hands start to shake, and my voice trembles. I know it is illogical and something we can overcome, and I hope to learn that in your course. Judging by your references and what former participants say on social media, I think I can achieve my goal.
  5. My goal is to learn to mater MS Excel, with both mathematical and statistical functions. While I know that many corporations and organizations use other program nowadays, Excel is still a foundation stone for every analyst, and I cannot move further in my professional career without being truly proficient in it. In a broader sense I hope to improve on my computer skills in general, since I am a member of an older generation and feel that younger people have an edge over me when it comes to any work with computer. I hope it will change once I am successfully done with this course.
  6. To be completely honest with you, I do not know. This place has an amazing reputation and the teachers stand out. Taking any course at this university should make me more knowledgeable and ready for my professional career in sales, though I do not exactly know what I will learn and master in this course. I just decided to enroll and go with the flow, trying my best in every lesson. No doubt teachers have more experience than me, they understand what knowledge we can benefit from the most, and how to lead the lessons. I am ready to submit fully to their leadership, and except just the best outcome at the end.
  7. I want to achieve financial literacy. It is no secret that almost everyone has to go in debt to pursue this or that goal in life, but I want to make the right financial decisions, and make sure I won’t end up a victim of my own bad decisions. I studied the course materials carefully, and though I do not understand everything, I know what areas we will address here, and that I should achieve a great level of financial literacy towards the end of the course. And that’s exactly what I want to achieve.


Final thoughts

Each interview question is specific, and this one does not require any ground-breaking, out-of-the-box, one-of-a-kind answer. Just make sure that you study the course materials well, understand the principal topics and goals of the course, and that your answer makes sense in the light of them. You can always bridge it with your future, mentioning your next step after the course, but as I’ve already said, it shouldn’t sound like the course is only a means to an end, that you want to complete it just to achieve some other goals in the future.

Try to show some enthusiasm for the course, the lessons, the teachers. People reading your answer (or listening to it in the interviews) should get an impression that you are genuinely looking forward to the course, and are eager to learn the things you will learn while participating. As long as they get this impression, and your words makes sense at the same time, they will be satisfied with your answer…

Ready to answer this one? I hope so! Do not forget to check also sample answers to other tricky interview questions:

Matthew Chulaw
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