To write a research paper or a dissertation, you will have to gather the data. If the topic of your research project is relevant to oral history or personal project, you will have to conduct interviews to gather data for your research project. There are lots of benefits of conducting interviews for your research project like you can do an in-depth analysis of the topic, you can get individual opinions and views about the topic and you can also explain the statistical data. To gather data for your research paper by conducting an interview, you will have to follow some essential steps. These steps are given below;
Lay groundwork for the interview
As we know that while interviewing a specific person, we have to ask questions from him. Therefore, before conducting the interview, we should complete the groundwork. Some essential tips to lay the groundwork for the interview are given below;
Research the interview topic
After selecting the topic for your research project, you should spend at least two to three days in formulating the research questions about this topic. These research questions should be relevant to the different aspects of the interview topic. On the other hand, if you are going to interview without getting a firm grasp on the basic facts of the interview question, you will waste your and interviewee time.
Explain the purpose of the interview
If you want to get the best results of the interview, you should clarify the purpose of the interview to the interviewee. If it is possible, you should also share interview questions with the interviewee before conducting the interview. While explaining the purpose of the interview to the interviewee, you should also discuss the time and venue of the interview.
Bring a device to record the interview
Nowadays, almost all the people are using smartphones and you can easily use these smartphones to record the interview. For this reason, you should install an audio recording app in the smartphone and keep this smartphone in front of the person. Its reason is that while conducting the interview, you can’t record all the words of the interviewee.
Write and ask effective questions
No doubt, your interviewee is a busy person. Therefore, you should not waste the time of the interviewee in asking the general questions. For this reason, you should try to write and ask effective questions from the interviewee. Some essential tips to write and ask effective questions from the interviewee are given below;
Write out questions to ask during the interview
When you are going to conduct the interview, you should try to write questions on a paper. Its reason is that if you don’t write these questions on a paper, there is a possibility that you will forget some essential questions and you are not able to find out the possible answers to these questions. Moreover, you should also try to write these questions in a pattern. The best way to write these questions is to prepare a handful of follow-up questions.
Craft open-ended questions
When you are going to interview the interviewee, you want to get his responses about a specific topic. If you are asking close-ended questions and your interviewee is providing answers to these questions just in ‘Yes’ or ‘No’, you are wasting your time and your interviewee time because you will not get his responses. Therefore, you should try to ask open-ended questions and allow the interviewee to explore his point of view.
Ask clear, generous and jargon-free questions
While conducting an interview, you will have to know the point of view of the interviewee. It is possible only if you are asking clear, generous and jargon-free questions. On the other hand, if you are asking some odd questions, your interviewee will not provide the best views about your topic. As a result, you will not get valuable data about your research topic.
Show good behaviour during the interview
To gather valuable data relevant to your topic idea while conducting an interview, you should show good behaviour during the interview. For this reason, you should keep in mind some essential tips. First, if you want to record the interview, you should get permission from the interviewee. Secondly, you should discuss the sequence of the questions with the interviewee before conducting the interview. Thirdly, after asking the questions, when your interviewee is responding, you should not intercept him. Anyhow, if you have some questions, you should note these questions and ask these questions at the end of the interview. Fourthly, you should try to show courtesy and sensible behaviour while conducting the interview. At last, you should jot down all the components of the interview to gather enough data for your research paper.