An examination of the reasons why some sociologists choose to use structured interviews when conduct

The Interviewer Effect Because an interview is a social interaction the appearance or behavior of the interviewer may influence the answers of the respondent. There are many practical factors to be considered, such as time, cost, access, opportunity and danger. By studying official suicide rates that covered large numbers of people, he was able to make generalisations that were useful and relevant to the whole of society. They take a scientific approach using methods such as structured interviews to obtain quantitative data. Unstructured interviews also lack representativeness — because they are time consuming, it is difficult to get a large enough sample to be representative of large populations. Interviews can either be conducted face to face, via phone, video link or social media. Next, you must consider who will be the interviewer, and this will depend on what type of person is being interviewed. Training might need to be more thorough for researchers undertaking unstructured interviews — to avoid the problem of interviewer bias. Interpersonal skills and training — A further practical problem is that some researchers may lack the interpersonal skills required to conduct informal unstructured interviews. Such methods include experiments, questionnaires and structured interviews. For example, children have a limited attention span and for this reason lengthy interviews should be avoided. Practical disadvantages — unstructured Interviews may take a relatively long time to conduct.

Surveys are unlikely to be completed honestly, and offer little scope for respondents to reveal unexpected truths about themselves. To do this requires quantitative methods which generate large sets of numerical data which can be presented in graphs.

semi structured interview sociology

The Interview Schedule — A list of questions or topic areas the interviewer wishes to ask or cover in the course of the interview. Ethnicity: People have difficulty interviewing people from a different ethnic group.

This is difficult when using a group interview.

In traditional interview formats the interviewer directs the questioning and takes ownership of the material; in the feminist unstructured interview method the woman would recount her experiences in her own words with the interviewer serving only as a guide to the account.

There are many practical factors to be considered, such as time, cost, access, opportunity and danger.

explain some of the problems sociologists face when conducting structured interviews

The researcher may give away whether they approve or disapprove of certain responses in their body language or tone of voice or wording of probing questions and this in turn might encourage or discourage respondents from being honest.

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