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Lean Research Skills for Conducting Interviews

Learn to gather information from people using interviewing techniques that are effective and respectful.
Lean Research Skills for Conducting Interviews
This course is archived
Estimated 7 weeks
3–4 hours per week
Instructor-paced
Instructor-led on a course schedule
Free
Optional upgrade available

About this course

Skip About this course
Interviews are one of the most common and powerful field research methods, used across a wide variety of disciplines and topics. Whether conducting a research study, an evaluation of an existing product or service, or gathering insights for a business plan, or a design process, interviews are often the method of choice for gaining insights directly from people.  The quality of that information, however, depends to a large degree on the skill of the interviewer.

This course introduces effective techniques for conducting interviews and is designed to help you develop and strengthen your skills as an interviewer. It does not assume any existing experience conducting interviews, but will quickly take you past the basics and into best practices that incorporate the Lean Research principles of rigor, relevance, respect, and right-size. The course focuses specifically on conducting interviews in “the field” - contexts in which we may be in an unfamiliar setting or culture, such as when traveling abroad or conducting research in a place we haven’t been before.

Photo by Megha Hegde, MIT D-Lab

At a glance

  • Language: English
  • Video Transcript: English

What you'll learn

Skip What you'll learn
  • The steps and the skills needed to conduct quality interviews
  • How to apply the Lean Research principles to the interviewing process
  • How to identify and correct problematic interviewing techniques and behaviors
  • Strategies for dealing with challenging interviewing situations
  • How to design, prepare for, implement, document, and analyze interviews
Week 1: The Lean Research Approach to Interviewing
  • Lesson 1: Introduction to Lean Research
  • Lesson 2: The Lean Research principles in practice
Week 2: Becoming a Skilled Interviewer
  • Lesson 3: Introduction to interviewing skills: the basics
  • Lesson 4: Qualities and skills of effective interviewers
Week 3: Lean Research Interviewing Skills
  • Lesson 5: Lean Research interview skills
  • Lesson 6: Analyzing and using interview data
Week 4: Handling Challenges in Interviewing
  • Lesson 7: Dealing with challenges in interviewing
  • Lesson 8: Connecting across differences
Week 5: Practicing our Interviewing Skills
  • Lesson 9: Preparing to conduct your own interviews
Week 6: Conduct an interview!
  • Lesson 10: Conduct your practice interview (final project)
Week 7: Helping each other improve
  • Lesson 11: Peer review of interviews
  • Lesson 12: Course wrap-up

About the instructors

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