Qualitative Interview Strategies

Qualitative Interview Strategies


Types of Interview Strategies, How, and why they are used
Evidently, there are different interview strategies that could be used depending on the research concept and context; for example, telephone, individual, and case-based interviews (Seidman, 2013).

Telephone Interviews
Telephone interviews are commonly used for screening the interviewees or candidates through the phone. They are cost-effective and applicable in various circumstances; for example, when conducting preliminary interviews and if there is a need for confidentiality. Notably, the interviewer needs to schedule proper time and space when conducting the interview in order to avoid distraction (Ball & Ball, 2010). The strategy is commonly used when the interviewee is at a distant place or to ask preliminary information before conducting the real face-face interview. Purposefully, telephone interviews are majorly used to inform or remind the research participants about their involvement in the study.

Individual Interviews
Individual interviews are sometimes called personal and are characteristically one-on-one conversations.  Apparently, the time schedules usually range between thirty and ninety minutes. However, some may be less depending on the rudiments of the research. They are commonly used when the researcher is conducting a study using a survey methodology and interacting personally with the respondents (Ball & Ball, 2010). Normally, the purpose of the strategy is not only to get the response, but also to understand the attitude, interest, and the impression of the respondents. Also, it is necessary when the research needs detailed explanation.

Case-Based Interviews
Case interviews are mainly used when finding solutions to particular case problems (Ball & Ball, 2010). For example, they are critical when researching about the leadership methods, communication styles amongst others. In essence, the questions asked are specific to a particular issue. Usually, the case interviews are essential for asking qualitative questions that require the respondents to think. The purpose of the strategy is to arouse an interactive conversation process that elicit insight thought, explanation, and allows the interviewees to support their suppositions (Seidman, 2013).
Example of Research Question:  How can Teachers Improve the Reading Culture of Their Students?

Case-based interview would be good for the research question because it requires a solution to the particular issue of students’ reading. Also, the case is concerned about students and needs teachers’ opinion; therefore, the latter would serve as the respondents to help solve a specific issue. The format of the interview questions would be unstructured in nature in order herald conversation and discussion on the opinion and different responses.

Ball, F. W., & Ball, B. B. (2010). Killer Interviews: Success Strategies for Young Professionals. Indianapolis, IN: Dog Ear Pub.
Seidman, I. (2013). Interviewing as Qualitative Research: A Guide for Researchers in Education and the Social Sciences. New York: Teachers College Press.