Types of Interview 

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Types of Interview 


Interviews are divided into several parts. This classification. For convenience, this can be done in the following way – – –

(1) Classification on the basis of functions
( Classification According to Functions )

(a) Cause Examiner Interview – Cause Examiner Interview is called when the researcher has to find out the causes of a serious incident or problem. Therefore, the main objective of this interview is to find out the causes of the problem.

(b) Treatment Interview – After finding out the causes of the problem, the researcher conducts the interview for its solution. He finds solutions by establishing contact with the concerned persons, institutions and organizations like doctors, lawyers, judges, education organizations to solve the problem.

(c) Research Interviewy. – The interviews which are sponsored to find out the deep facts are called research interviews. Under this, discovering new social facts by finding out the feelings, attitudes and interests and desires of the person. it occurs .



(2) Classification on the basis of formality

(a) Formal Interview – This interview is also called guided or planned interview, in which the schedule method is used. The interviewer has pre-formed questions given in the schedule for which he gets answers from the information panel. He goes on to note down the answers given by the informant. In this type of interview the interviewer is not free to ask questions. He can neither ask new questions nor add new questions to the list. Hence such interview is controlled.


(b) Informal Interview – The interview is also called uncontrolled interview. In this, the schedule is not prepared like the formal interview. Interviewee asks questions related to his subject, which can be answered in the form of description or story. There is a lot of freedom in the description of events and feelings. On the basis of this description the interviewer draws his conclusions.


(3) Classification on the Basis of Number of Informants 

(a) Personal Interview – In personal interview only one person is interviewed at a time. The interviewer goes on asking questions to the informant and he answers them one by one. That there is a face-to-face conversation with only one person at a time, so the informer also gets inspiration in answering. Merits – Personal interview is considered very beneficial and useful. Its caveats are in a nutshell – (i) Very few reliable information is received. (1) Any doubt in this is immediately clarified. (1) Useful and necessary questions are asked except unnecessary questions, from which the desired answers are obtained. iv) There is a possibility of getting answers to personal and sensitive questions.




(a) On the basis of the objectives, three types of interview have been discussed – diagnostic interview, remedial interview and investigative interview. (1) Diagnostic Interview: When the purpose of the interview is to find out the causes of a social phenomenon and problem, it is called causal interview. For example, the interviews done to know the causes of problems like child crime, unemployment and corruption etc. come in this category. Under this, the interviewer explains the motivating factors behind the problem.

(II) Treatment Interview: When the purpose of the interview is to get suggestions related to the treatment of a problem, it is called remedial interview. Generally, in this type of interview, the hidden reasons behind any problem are found and measures are taken to solve them.

(II) Research Interview: When the purpose of the interview is to obtain new and original knowledge related to any area of ​​social life, then such interviews are called research interviews.



On the basis of formality, the interview is divided into two parts – formal interview and informal interview.

(1) Formal Interview: In this, the interviewer conducts the interview methodically on the basis of the pre-prepared interview schedule. He would not be free to change the language of the questions of the schedule, their order and even their type. It is also known by the names of planned interview, guided interview and random interview etc.

(II) Informal Interview: In this, a pre-determined schedule of questions is bathed. The interviewer has the freedom to formulate and ask immediate questions at the time of the interview as per the purpose of the research. It is also known as unplanned interview, undirected interview and unstructured interview.



On the basis of numbers, the interview is divided into two parts – personal interview and group interview.

(I) Personal Interview: When only one person is interviewed at a time, it is called personal interview. There is a conversation between the interviewer and the respondent and on the basis of that information is collected. The interviewer goes on asking questions one after the other and the respondent goes on answering. Most types of interviews are conducted in this manner.

(II) Group Interview: When more than one respondents are interviewed together at the same time, it is called group interview. The interviewer meets a group of people at one place and asks questions. One person gives the answer and the other person approves it or puts forth facts against it. Thus a debate becomes the form of a meeting. This is how the interviewer gets the information.


Based on the method of study, the interview is divided into three parts – non-directed interview, focused interview and repetition interview.

(1) Non-Directive Interview: There is no interview schedule. The interviewer is free to ask questions as per the research objective. It puts a question in front of the respondent. Respondent freely presents the answer to the question in the form of a brief description. Such an interview is particularly useful for psychological studies or single subject studies. It is also called Un-Controlled Interview or Unguided Interview.

(II) Focussed Interview: It was first used by R. K. Merton (R. K. Merton) and P. Kendall (P. Kendall) in 1946. Focused interview is used on only those people who have been a participant in a certain event or situation. For example, to know the effect of a film, only those people are selected for interview in it who have seen that film. Thereafter, information is obtained by focusing the attention of such selected persons on that side of the film.

Repeated Interview: Under this, the same group or mother is interviewed more than once. For the process and trend analysis of social change, more than one factor has to be calculated, which explained the process and trend going on in different periods, Merton, Fiske and Kendall (Merton, Fiske and Kendall) explained this effect done for study. Ton, Fiske and Kendall) used this method for the first time as a means of mass communication.

Thus, on the basis of the duration of the contact, the interview is divided into two parts –

Short Duration Interview and Long Duration Interview. There are two forms of informant interview – Direct Interview and Indirect Interview.




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