What is interview?

We explain what an interview is and what it is for. What are job interviews, journalistic interviews, and clinical interviews.

  1. What is interview?

An interview is an exchange of ideas, opinions through a conversation between one, two or more people where an interviewer is designated to ask. The purpose of the interviews is to obtain certain information, whether personal or not.

All those present at the talk discuss a specific issue raised by the professional . Many times spontaneity and modern journalism lead to a free dialogue generating issues of debate that arise as the conversation flows.

An interview is reciprocal , where the interviewee uses a collection technique through a structured interrogation or a completely free conversation ; In both cases, a form or scheme with questions or questions is used to focus the talk that serves as a guide. This is why we will always find two clear roles, that of the interviewer and that of the interviewee (or receiver). The interviewer is the one who fulfills the function of directing the interview by dominating the dialogue with the interviewee and the topic to be treated by asking questions and in turn, closing the interview. Next we will develop the two main types of interviews.

Other useful resources:

  • Characteristics of an Interview .
  • Journalistic text .
  1. Structured interview

In a structured interview the interviewer has limited freedom.

In the first case we talk about a formal and structured interview, which is characterized by being posed in a standardized manner where questions are asked that were previously thought and for a particular interviewee who specifically answers what is being asked.

For this reason, the interviewer has a limited freedom when formulating the questions because they cannot be born from the interview itself, but from a questionnaire made beforehand. However, this methodology  has benefits as well as some disadvantages that will be detailed below.

Advantages and disadvantages

  • Among the  advantages  of this typology, we can mention that the information is easy to interpret favoring the comparative analysis ; The interviewer does not require much experience in the technique as it is a matter of following the schedule of questions.
  • As for the disadvantages , we can mention the limitations when it comes to deepening an issue that arises in the interview since, since the dialogue is not allowed to flow naturally, it is very complicated for these issues to occur.
  1. Unstructured and free interview

In a free interview you should not follow an order schedule.

In the second case we mention an unstructured interview that is the clear opposition of a structured interview for different reasons. It is flexible and open since, even if there is a research objective (which is what governs the questions) it is not expected that your answers will be composed of an orderly content and with some depth.

If we talk about the role of the interviewer, we affirm that he is in charge of preparing questions but (unlike the formal interview) he should not follow an order schedule on how to take the questions and their formulation.

Advantages and disadvantages

This type of interview has many advantages such as, for example, being adaptable and free, the generation of a pleasant climate that enables the deepening of topics of interest is achieved .

In any case, not all of them are advantages since, since more time is required (because the topics tend to expand) it is more expensive to do for the time spent by the interviewer . Likewise, the interviewer needs to be a person with a great technique and informed on the subject to be treated in order to have arguments and opinions to deepen and dialogue.

It is worth clarifying that within this type of interview we find the following subdivision:

  • Deep interview
  • Focused interview
  • Focused interview
  1. Job interviews

Work interview
In panel type interviews there are several interviewers for an applicant.

In many cases, prior to accessing a job, interviews are usually conducted to meet the applicant and you know if he has the required skills.

Normally before entering a job interview, some previous steps are requested, such as the delivery of letters of introduction or recommendation or the Curriculum Vitae itself. In this type of interviews, the person who applies for the job and some representative of the company or institution that you want to access usually intervene .

It can be structured, that is to say that a series of questions are asked that must be answered , or unstructured, that is, a simple dialogue between the interviewer and interviewed in a more fluid or natural way. However, most of the time it is usually mixed, that is, the respondent answers certain predetermined questions but in turn open questions are asked, without an established order.

On the other hand, there are individual interviews and group interviews , that is to say that several applicants are interviewed simultaneously and finally, the panel-type interviews, that is, there are several interviewers for one applicant.

  1. Journalistic Interviews

Another type of interviews are the journalistic ones, these are generally used as a testimonial means to give credibility to a certain report or analysis . Many times they are used as a way to get into a topic or to continue a specific investigation or analysis.

These types of interviews may be previously scheduled or may arise unexpectedly. The latter are widely used in police, political and even sports journalism.

In addition there are different types of genres of this kind of interviews , one of them is of opinion, that is to say, it seeks to know the opinions of the interviewee. In fact, many times no questions are asked, but only comments so that the interviewee directs his ideas towards a certain topic.

There are also informative interviews, where the interviewer tries to get information that is unknown . He must not have previous knowledge , but he acquires them as the interview progresses. Finally, interpretive interviews can be mentioned, where the interviewer has knowledge on the topic of discussion and therefore his questions are both informative and interpretive..

  1. Clinical interviews

Clinical interview
Clinical interviews are usually planned.

Another type of interviews are the clinics, whose functions are to obtain a notion of the problems suffered by the patient , then the doctor makes certain indications or clarifications and finally tries to constitute a certain relationship between the doctor and the patient, always having the Confidence and trust as the basis of this link.

It is estimated that these interviews should be rather brief and concrete , but without neglecting the warmth and human sensitivity. In this way the patient will feel comfortable and will continue with their medical visits uninterruptedly. Generally these types of interviews are usually planned.

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