Introduction to In-Depth Interviews: A Short Course

A 3-Day Livestream Seminar Taught by Corey M. Abramson, Ph.D.

Download Sample Course Slides

In-depth interviews play a vital role in the social sciences and applied research. Interviews offer a powerful tool to understand people’s accounts, experiences, narratives, and attitudes. While they are commonly a stand-alone research method, in-depth interviews are also frequently combined with surveys, participant observation, historical documents, and other data types.

While in-depth interviews are widespread, designing and executing an interview-based study successfully can be both challenging and rewarding. This course aims to help maximize the rewards, while providing resources to address the challenges.

Concretely, the course will equip you with skills necessary to:

  1. Design compelling interview studies.
  2. Conduct interviews face-to-face or remotely.
  3. Analyze the data.
  4. Present the findings.

The course is organized around the life of an in-depth interview study, covering each of the key stages of a project. We discuss the reasons to use interview methods (and how to justify them), how to design an interview guide, ways to recruit participants, how to successfully complete an interview (and how to manage difficulties), ways of making sense of data, and how to integrate findings into research products such as articles, books, and reports. We will also touch on topics such as multi-participant interviews, technology use, and ways interviews can be integrated into mixed-methods studies.

Starting March 7, we are offering this seminar as a 3-day synchronous*, livestream workshop held via the free video-conferencing software Zoom. Each day will consist of two lecture sessions which include hands-on exercises, separated by a 1-hour break. You are encouraged to join the lecture live, but will have the opportunity to view the recorded session later in the day if you are unable to attend at the scheduled time.

*We understand that finding time to participate in livestream courses can be difficult. If you prefer, you may take all or part of the course asynchronously. The video recordings will be made available within 24 hours of each session and will be accessible for four weeks after the seminar, meaning that you will get all of the class content and discussions even if you cannot participate synchronously.

Closed captioning is available for all live and recorded sessions. Live captions can be translated to a variety of languages including Spanish, Korean, and Italian. For more information, click here.

More Details About the Course Content

In this seminar, you will learn:

  • The strengths of in-depth interviews as a data source.
  • Principles of study design.
  • Strategies for sampling and recruiting participants.
  • Tips for crafting an effective interview guide.
  • Ways of approaching interviewer effects and runaway interviews.
  • A contemporary model of workflow to aid in analyzing qualitative interview data.
  • How to identify patterns and themes in interview data.
  • To write analytical memos to aid in producing reports, articles, and books.
  • About technological considerations with data collection and analysis.

Besides lectures, in-person discussion, and an online discussion forum, this course will demonstrate data collection challenges using live mock interviews.


This course will not rely on any particular computing package.

Who Should Register?

This course is suitable for researchers from various fields, backgrounds, and career stages. Drawing on the instructor’s extensive experience in both solo and team-based projects allows opportunities to learn both core skills and useful tips for your research.

This course is for anyone who wants to learn about using in-depth interviews in their research. No prior experience is necessary.


Part 1: Designing your in-depth interview study

  • Introduction to interview methods
  • Leveraging the strengths of in-depth interviews
  • Using interviews in exploratory, descriptive, and comparative studies
  • Sampling and recruitment strategies for longitudinal and cross-sectional studies
  • Designing and refining an interview guide

Part 2: Conducting your interviews

  • How to prepare for an interview
  • Conducting an interview, start to finish
  • Tips for a successful interview
  • Addressing challenges in interviews
  • Post-interview debrief

Part 3: Analyzing interview data

  • A contemporary model of workflow for qualitative interviews
  • Organizing data
  • Identifying patterns and themes in interviews
  • Writing analytic memos

Part 4: Topics in interview methodology

  • Qualitative interviews in mixed-methods research
  • Technology and interviewing
  • Transcription practices
  • Remote interviewing
  • Multi-participant interviews and focus groups

Seminar Information

Thursday, March 7 –
Saturday, March 9, 2024

Daily Schedule: All sessions are held live via Zoom. All times are ET (New York time).

10:00am-12:30pm (convert to your local time)

Payment Information

The fee of $995 includes all course materials.

PayPal and all major credit cards are accepted.

Our Tax ID number is 26-4576270.