• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Interview is a form of research method which involves interaction between interviewer and respondents working through standardized questionnaires referring to structured interview favored by positivists or through informal conversation which refers to uns

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Interview Interview is a form of research method which involves interaction between interviewer and respondents working through standardized questionnaires referring to structured interview favored by positivists or through informal conversation which refers to unstructured interview favored by phenomenologists. In the followings, the practical, theoretical and ethical issues of interview will be discussed. First of all, interview can be carried out either individually or in group. Individual interviews allow in-depth discussion of the research topic, especially topics concerning sensitive issues as it is easier to establish rapport between the researcher and respondent. Through a one-to-one discussion with the interviewer, respondent will be more open and honest in their answers as they can feel their privacy and confidentiality can be protected. Besides, interviewer can ensure respondent is not distracted or influenced by the presence of other respondents, which would be difficult in group interviews. However, individual interviews are more suitable for small scale study as it is rather time consuming. This in turn will lower the representativeness and generalizability of the data collected, despite its high validity. ...read more.

Middle

For example, some criminals interviewed by Laurie Taylor later claimed they had made up fanciful stories about their escapades in order to see how gullible Taylor was. This has resulted in data less valid than that of participant observation. Nonetheless, theoretically, the data collected in interview is still considered more valid than that of questionnaire. This is because, through face to face interaction, interviewer may be able to detect lies by judging the facial and body language of respondents. This would prevent respondent from lying or misleading the researcher. Hence, interview is seen to be more valid than questionnaire. Besides that, interview has the advantage in the sense that the interviewer could probe deeper to gain in-depth information, especially through unstructured interview. This can be seen in Betty Friedon's study of women's satisfaction as housewives. Though, this would not be the case for structured interview as the interviewer is not allowed to deviate from questions provided. Hence, data collected in unstructured interview is more valid than of structured interview. ...read more.

Conclusion

Hence, generalization and representativeness of data collected in interview are more justified. Even so, interview has the practical disadvantage of language barriers. Although this can be solved by hiring trained interviewer, it would be rather costly. In addtion, interview has less ethical issue than experiment or covert participation as consent is usually obtained before the interview can take place. Confidentiality and privacy of the interviews can also be protected. Informed consent from participant would also prevent misleading the participant of the nature of research. Unlike covert participant observation, both interviewer and respondent are unlikely to be harm or placed in danger in interview as respondent is aware of interviewer identity and purpose. Hence, interview is seen as a rather ethical research method. Withal, interview produces results which are less valid than participant observation but more valid and less reliable than questionnaire and experiment. Although interview tends to be limited to small scale study which has low representativeness and generalizability, interview is useful to study attitudes and emotions which cannot be observed directly. These limitations can be overcome by using method triangulation by Norman, which allows crosschecks of finding produced by other method, as to increase the validity and reliability of the findings. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Sociological Differentiation & Stratification section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Sociological Differentiation & Stratification essays

  1. Demography topic revision notes. The study of populations and their characteristics is called ...

    The key reason for the increase was the expansion of the European Union in 2004 to include ten new member states, mostly in Eastern Europe, giving their citizens the right to live and work in the UK. Four fifths of the increase in net migration in 2004 came from these ten states, with Poland accounting for the biggest share.

  2. Assess the strengths and weaknesses of questionnaires, as a research method

    Comparing questionnaires to other research methods, we can see the difference in the data collected and why each theorist likes a particular research method. For example, interviews are preferred by feminists as they allow you to collect qualitative and in-depth information about the participant.

  1. Assess the usefulness of Postal Questionnaires

    respondent in order for them to feel like they can tell the truth, it is also good if the respondent has not had to give personal information about themselves (meaning they could be interviewed anonymously) whereas for postal questionnaires to be sent to particular people to gain to correct sample

  2. Choice of research method. here are various types of research methods available, such ...

    For example, Durkheim chose to study suicide partly because statistics were available from many European countries. Besides, sociologist will resort to use secondary data when conducting historical studies because it is impossible to collect primary data. Furthermore, ethical consideration might as well influence the sociologist's choice of research method.

  1. METHODOLGY The research design sets out how the researcher will collect evidence and ...

    Participant observation is the main research method used in ethnographic sociology. 'Ethnography' simply means 'writing about a way of life'. Participant observation is a form of qualitative data used by Interactionists. In participant observation study, the researcher, like Stott and Reicher in item B, joins the group or social situation that is being studied.

  2. Should marijuana be legalized

    In the King James Bible, Psalms 104:14 clearly states "He causeth the grass for the cattle, and the herb for the service of man." That clarifies the assumption that it is not a sin to smoke marijuana. Many people would benefit from marijuana being legalized.

  1. Social research

    The first thing I will do is to make sure that the interviewees know the purpose of the research because this will hopefully make the interviewees more comfortable and they will feel my research has some kind of purpose that they are part of.

  2. What is an Interview

    The main limitation of qualitative approaches is that by being so subjective it is hindered by the biases and assumptions of both the interviewer and the interviewee. For instance, interviewer bias could reflect in the type of questions asked, and the interviewing style of the interviewer.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work