Assignment 2: Interviewing

For this assignment, you will interview and be interviewed by someone in this class.

Pair up with someone NOT in your project group. You will be asking each other questions about experiences with Bay Area public transportation, such as BART, AC Transit, MUNI, Caltrain, et cetera.

Before the interview, develop a short interview protocol: a set of 6 questions in roughly the order in which you plan to ask them. During the interview, you may need to re-order or ask follow-up questions.

Aim for interviews of about 30 to 45 minutes in length. RECORD YOUR INTERVIEWS. Most of you will have computers, iPods, iPhones, etc that you can use for this. Let me know if you need equipment.

Audacity is a free audio recording/editing software that works on Windows/Mac/Linux.

Transcribe at least part of an interview – either this interview, or, if relevant, one you have already done for your project. The rule of thumb is that it takes (for a good typist!) three times as long to transcribe as the interview itself. So you don’t have to transcribe the whole thing, but you should spend at least an hour transcribing.

Afterward, reflect on how you would revise the topics and questions including wording and ordering.

In sum, you will do the following

  1. Interview someone else in the class
  2. Be interviewed by someone else in the class
  3. Do an hour of transcribing of the interview you conducted interview (or, if you have done some interviews for your project already, you can substitute one of those).

EACH of you should turn in:

  1. A short statement of the goals of your interview.
  2. The list of questions (with as much specific wording as you expect to need) from which you performed the interview.
  3. ALSO a revised set of questions: how you would do it differently were you to do it again. (This can be a separate list, or an annotation of your initial list, but I want both versions.) This is neither the questions you planned to ask nor the questions you did ask, but what you would use to guide the next interview if you were to do one.
  4. Your transcription.
  5. A short summary of key findings from the interview for which you were the interviewer. About 2 pages.
  6. Two reflections, about one page each.
    • on being the interviewee,
    • on being the interviewer
  7. As interviewee, up to a page of feedback to the interviewer: what advice would you give him/her on questions, but especially on behavior, attitude, and the like during the interview? (Give them a copy of this, as well as one for us.)

Please be concise while thorough; no part of this needs to be very long.

Each pair, please turn in your papers together.