Subject details

This subject engages you with a very common from of sociological research: the face-to-face interview. At the conclusion of the subject you will:

  1. understand the notion of epistemology and the ways in which epistemology may shape methodological choices;
  2. recognize different types of interviews;
  3. grasp the strengths and limitations of interviews as a research method;
  4. identify the ethical issues that may arise in semi-structured qualitative interviewing and appreciate issues of subjectivity and reflexivity in the research process;
  5. know how to conduct and transcribe a semi-structured qualitative interview and write a qualitative research report.
  • Topics
    • Introduction to qualitative research
    • The what and why of interviewing
    • Ethics
    • Developing the interview guide
    • Selecting, finding and accessing research participants
    • Subjectivity and Reflexivity in Interviewing
    • Conducting the interview
    • Transcription and field notes
    • The Literature Review
    • Qualitative data analysis
    • Qualitative data analysis
    • Writing a qualitative research report
  • Study resources
    • Instructional Methods
      • Disscusion forum/Discussion Board
      • Embedded Multimedia
      • Online Quizzes/Tests
      • Online assignment submission
      • Web links
    • Online Materials
      • Online Assessment
      • Printable format materials
      • Quizzes
      • Resources and Links

Entry Requirements


Note: Level 3 subjects normally assume a moderate level of prior knowledge in this area, e.g. from studying related Level 1 and 2 subjects or other relevant experience.

Special requirements

No special requirements

This subject provides hands on experience of social research. The particular focus is the semi-structured qualitative interviews. You nominate a research topic and, with the assistance of the teaching team, draft a research plan to investigate that topic. You then undertake three semi-structured qualitative interviews and qualitative data analysis following templates and protocols provided by the research team.

Assessment involves preparation of a research plan, the submission of the first interview transcribed and with preliminary data analysis and personal reflections on the interview process, and a final research report collating the findings from the three interviews.

  • Assignment 1 - Interview (30%)
  • Assignment 2 - Planning Assessment — Research Plan (20%)
  • Assignment 3 - Report — Research Report (50%)

Textbooks are subject to change within the academic year. Students are advised to purchase their books no earlier than one to two months before the start of a subject

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