Describe main features of the interview as a research method.

The main features of interview are:

(i)It is conducted in the form of conversation which is shaped by certain guidelines and questions between the researcher and the respondent.

(ii)It is used in surveys and participant observation method.

(iii)The interview is flexible in its structure.

(iv)This flexibility can lead to a change in the mood of the respondent or lack of concentration, which is one of its disadvantages.

(v)Some interviewers have very structured format with specific questions whereas some have loosely structured format with only a check-list of topics rather than the actual questions.

(vi)During interview the interviewer can ask cross questions or other questions that are required during the process which are not possible in a questionnaire.

(vii)Use of recorders and other equipments are also taken during the interview. Their use makes the respondent uncomfortable that introduces a degree of formality into the conversation, which is another disadvantage.

(viii)The mode of recording depends on the social and physical circumstances in which the interview is conducted.

(ix)The authenticity of this method also depends on the memory of the interviewer after it is conducted.

(x)Sometimes important information goes unnoticed or it is not at all recorded.

(xi)On a whole, a good interview is often based on the rapport build by the researcher with the interviewer.

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