The Survey Method Of Choice For A Researcher

829 Words Apr 18th, 2016 4 Pages
There are many situations that make conducting an interview the survey method of choice for a researcher. The interview can be completed face-to-face, either individually or as part of a focus group, or it can be completed by telephone. All of these methods allow a richer opportunity to gather information in a more open-ended fashion, allowing the interviewer to take note of body language, tone of voice, and other aesthetic aspects of the participant. Salant and Dillman (1994) recommend face-to-face interview surveys when respondents are unlikely to respond willingly or accurately in writing, when the questionnaire is complex, and when projects are well-funded and include professional, experienced interviewers. Face-to-face interviews are generally preferred over telephone interviews, since body language and other nuances can be more closely monitored. Ng and Coakes (2014) point out that not all the data collected will be numerical, and contextual and textual data can also be analyzed. Brace (2004) also makes note that being in the same room allows the interviewer to use prompt cards and other visuals that would be inhibited over the phone. Focus groups, on the other hand, allow the advantage of a face-to-face meeting while making good use of time and cost by having several people in the room together. This setting helps weed out extreme views, creates a forum for discussion and argument in a controlled setting, and can stimulate opinions and ideas through a group…
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