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Qualitative Research Interviewing
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Qualitative Research Interviewing
Biographic Narrative and Semi-Structured Methods

First Edition


June 2001 | 424 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

Qualitative Research Interviewing is unique in its conceptual coherence and the level of practical detail that it offers to the beginning social researcher. It provides a comprehensive resource for those concerned with the practice of semi-structured interviewing, the most commonly used interview approach in social research, and in particular for depth, biographic narrative interviewing, the interview methods of choice in qualitative research. It covers the full range of practices from the identification of topics through to strategies for writing up research findings in diverse ways.

The first part describes a coherent conceptual framework for understanding semi-structured and biographic narrative interviewing. It uses examples of good and bad practice from both published research and work by students and field researchers to clarify the following issues:

- The purpose of research

- The development of research questions

- The initial design of interview questions for differently-constructed interview sessions, including follow-up questions

- Generating narrative questions and note-taking

- Choices of random or theory-driven 'samples' of informants

- Managing contact during, and after interviews.

The second part deals with data analysis and writing up. The philosophy and politics of transcribing, coding and interpretation are dealt with in a highly practical way and the complex procedure of biographic-narrative interpretation -distinguishing lived life from told story - is described and illustrated in an accessible way.

The final sections deal with theorising and the writing up of a range of interview reports using a variety of textual strategies. Examples of good and bad practice from student and published research are included throughout.

Qualitative Research Interviewing is a unique and indispensable resource for learning the art and craft of a wide spectrum of methods and approaches in interview based research.


 
PART ONE: CONCEPTS AND APPROACHES TO DEPTH INTERVIEWING
 
Interview `Facts' as Evidence to Support Inferences to Eventual Theorization/Representation Models
 
Conceptual Frameworks for Studying and Inferring from (Research) Interview Interaction Practice
 
Models of Research Design and Their Application to Semi-Structured Depth Interviewing
 
Lightly and Heavily-Structured Depth Interviewing
Theory-Questions and Interviewer-Questions

 
 
PART TWO: UP TO THE INERVIEW: STRATEGIES FOR GETTING THE RIGHT MATERIALS
 
Preparing for Any Interviewing Sequence
 
Preparing Lightly-Structured Depth Interviews
A Design for a BNIM-Type Biographic-Narrative Interview

 
 
Preparing Moderately- or Heavily-Structured Interviews
 
PART THREE: AROUND THE INTERVIEW: CONTACT MANAGEMENT-THEORY AND PRACTICE
 
Before Making Contact and Starting the Fieldwork Phase of the Research Process
 
The Session
 
PART FOUR: AFTER THE INTERVIEW: STRATEGIES FOR WORKING THE MATERIALS
 
Copying, Indexing and Transcribing
 
Analyzing/Interpreting Any Interview Materials
Answers to TQs

 
 
Analyzing/Interpreting SQUIN-BNIM Interview Materials
Answers to TQs

 
 
PART FIVE: COMPARISON OF CASES: FROM CONTINGENCIES OF CASES TO TYPES OF TYPOLOGIES
 
Resources for Typification and General-Models within Single-Case Research
 
Types of Typologies
 
PART SIX: WRITING UP: STRATEGIES OF RE/PRESENTATION
 
Conceptual Frameworks for Studying and Re/presenting
 
Writings Up: Theorizing and Narrating in `Presentation' Strategies
 
`Writing Up' Biographic Sub-Genres
Suggestions by Way of a Conclusion

 

`Wengraf provides a comprehensive theoretical and practical guide to the planning, conduct, and interpretative analysis of data by semi-structured interviewing methods. Forthright and frank in his comments about the limitations and practical implications of varying choices which investigators have to make in designing their research projects. Reading this text is like having a tough but expert and caring mentor who wants you to do the best research possible, but will not hesitate to tell you when your ideology and assumptions skew that possibility' - Vincent W Hevern, Le Moyne College, USA


This book was accessible and really informative for students selecting this approach.

Mrs Della Austin
School of Education and Community, Glyndwr University
October 27, 2016

In-depth study of qualitative research interviewing with advice beyond the BNIM method. There is a wealth of guidance offered that stems from real research experience.

Mr Adrian Crookes
School Of Media, London College of Communication
May 27, 2015

A practical and useful text from designing biographic narrative research projects, to interviewing and analysing data. Good examples to support a greater understanding of the method.

Mrs Nikki Fairchild
Childhood Studies : Early Years, Chichester University
April 28, 2015

This offers very useful material for thinking through the process of doing interviews in qualitative research.

Dr Sonya Sharma
Criminology and Sociology, Kingston University
April 10, 2014

Very Good book for anybody looking to perform Interviews

Mr Michael Hobson
School of Education, St Mary's University College Twickenham
August 6, 2013

Our Program has chosen instead to focus our training of students on quantitative methods.

Professor J. Roy Gillis
Applied Psychology & Human Development, OISE, Univ of Toronto
July 12, 2013

Excellent practical and comprehensive book on in-depth semi structured interviewing.

Carol McGowan
Business and Humanities Department, Dundalk Institute of Technology
May 20, 2013

I believe this text is the strongest on interviews I have read. It is ideal for PhD students as well as masters students. It is very practical and thorough and covers all aspects of the process. Any student considering qualitative research and more specifically questionnaires really need to use this text

Mr Chris Doran
Salford Business School, Salford University
May 8, 2013

Excellent and detailed guidance on how to prepare for the biographical interview.

Mr Hefin Gwilym
School of Social Sciences, Bangor University
February 17, 2013

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