Essay Crafting And Conducting Intensive Interviews

Essay Crafting And Conducting Intensive Interviews

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Crafting and Conducting Intensive Interviews

Types of Interviews
Qualitative Research: Using informational, intensive, and investigative interviewing strategies
• Informational: Gathering accurate facts and responses for demographic questions and detailed description of events with focus on chronology, places, and people involved. Usually used for people with an objectivist cast
• Intensive Interviewing: A gently-guided, and one-sided conversation in order to gather the personal experiences of the research participants in relation to the research topic. The research topic can be broad (history of people during the Cold War) or focused (local elementary school teachers’ views on policies)
• Investigative: Focus on finding hidden actions and intentions or to uncover truths behind policies and procedures. Usually used when interviewing politicians, for social justice projects, or in some ethnographic studies
Important: Always be respectful of people’s culture, values, and beliefs. Use appropriate language and dress well (not necessarily in formal clothing, but being respectful). For many situations, you want to gain the trust of your interviewee and not raise any suspicion that you may be a spy, undercover cop, etc.
Characteristics of Intensive Interviews
• Choosing participants who have experience with the topic
• Exploring participants’ experiences and situations
• Using open-ended questions
• Goal to gather detailed responses
• Focus on understanding the participants’ perspective, meaning, and experiences
• Following up with unanticipated areas of inquiry, hints, implicit views, and actions
Getting Ready for the Interview
• Avoid reading literatures on your topic right before the interview so you enter with a clear mind, but do ...


... middle of paper ...


... they are having a good day, ask them what a good day is for them)
• Try not to leave any open meanings. Ask questions to gain more details
• How, what, and when questions lead to huge amounts of data, so asking for more details can be vital
• See pages 100, 101, and 102 for an excerpt of an interview in which the interviewer gathered more details. Her analysis is there too
Interviewing in Theoretical Sampling
• Allows for “a dense conceptual analysis to challenge or extend ruling ideas about the empirical problem”
• Sometimes asking more direct questions later in the interview is important to fill in gaps
How Many Interviews?
• Don’t feel having a small number of interviews will look bad on your research. There is no correlation at all
• The number of interviews depends on your research and how many interviews you feel is needed to gain enough data for your purpose

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