Lesson 9. Research Skill: Interviewing


  • Communicators conduct interviews for a variety of purposes.
  • Interviewees are motivated to share information for a variety of reasons.
  • The information people share in interviews is based on their expertise, experience, self-interest, proximity and other factors.
  • There are a variety of tools and strategies for locating appropriate interviewees.
  • Selecting appropriate interviewees and evaluating the information they provide is a major information task for all communications professionals.
  • Preparing for an interview must be tied to the question analysis and to the interviewee’s background.
  • Interviews must be conducted ethically, and the information generated by them must be used ethically and legally.


After completing this lesson you will be able to:

  • differentiate between different purposes for conducting interviews.
  • understand different types of interviewing methods.
  • understand different categories of potential interviewees.
  • search for interviewees using appropriate tools and strategies.
  • understand how to select and gather background information about interviewees.
  • understand interviewee characteristics based on the type of information contributor s/he represents.
  • understand interviewee rights and the interviewer / interviewee contract.
  • understand basic “interviewing etiquette.”


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Information Strategies for Communicators Copyright © 2015 by Kathleen A. Hansen and Nora Paul is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.