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Interviewing (Qualitative data collection)

Interviewing (Qualitative data collection)
Semi-structured and in-depth interviewing techniques.


As a qualitative method, interviewing can generate wonderfully rich and nuanced data, but it requires considerable social, listening and questioning skills. This one-day course is designed to help participants become aware of and practise some of the techniques involved. As well as a grounding in the principles of semi-structured and in-depth interviewing, participants will gain hands-on experience of conducting interviews, acting as an interviewee, and giving and receiving detailed feedback. Some knowledge of qualitative research or attendance on the design day is advisable.




During the course we will cover:

  • theories of interviewing
  • when to use this method
  • different kinds of interview and degrees of structure
  • questioning and probing skills (how to criticise and improve on these)
  • practical issues involved in setting up interviews
  • interviewing different kinds of participant
  • recording and transcription


Course tutor


Karen O'Reilly is Emeritus Professor of Sociology at Loughborough University, and an affiliate of the School of Anthropology and Museum Ethnography, University of Oxford. She has taught ethnographic and qualitative methods for over 20 years, including the Essex Summer School in Social Science Data Collection and Analysis, the Swiss Summer School in Social Science Methods, in Lugano; at the Universities of Aberdeen, Essex, Loughborough and Oxford; and at universities in Germany, Norway and Hong Kong. Her experience also includes being a Member of the Advisory Board of the NCRM biannual Research Methods Festival 2011-2012; and a member of the ESRC Peer Review College 2012 – 2016.

Karen is a highly experienced ethnographer whose many publications include two widely cited books on ethnography: Ethnographic Methods(Routledge, 2nd ed. 2012) and Key Concepts in Ethnography(Sage, 2009). She has also been instrumental in the design and evaluation of Masters level Research Methods courses and programmes in a number of universities. Karen provides short courses for the SRA on a regular basis.



  This course contributes 6 hours to the MRS CPD programme

3/11/2020 9:30 AM - 4:30 PM
GMT Standard Time
Grand Connaught Rooms 61-65 Great Queen Street LONDON WC2B 5DA UNITED KINGDOM
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