InterviewingMethodology courses and philosophy of science

Course information

ECTS: 1.5 / 2.5 (depending on chosen track, see working method).
Number of sessions: 5 (full course)
Hours per sessions:
Entry level: Introduction
Course fee:

  • free for PhD candidates of the Graduate School
  • €550 for non-members (full course)
  • consult our enrolment policy for more information.


    Telephone: +31 (0)10 4082607 (Graudate School)

    Dates session 1, 2 and 3

    November 21 (Tuesday) 2017
    Mandeville building (directions) T16-01

    December 4  (Monday) 2017
    13:30 - 16:30
    Mandeville building (directions) T3-05

    December 11  (Monday) 2017
    13:30 - 16:30
    Mandeville building (directions) T3-14

    Dates sessions 4 & 5

    March 1 (Thursday) 2018
    Mandeville Building (directions) T18-59

    March 19 (Monday) 2018
    Mandeville Building (directions) T18-59



    This interviewing curriculum can be followed entirely or in tracks. The tracks consist of the Delphi technique course (sessions 1,2 & 3) and the open interviewing course (sessions 1, 4 & 5).

    This program introduces interviewing, one of the prominent methods in virtually all disciplines in the social sciences and humanities. The course will pay special attention to the Delphi technique for eliciting experts’ judgments. This method has been widely applied and can be used for forecasting and policy making on a large variety of fields, such as economic forecasting, technological development, education, health, business forecasting and energy and environmental policy. Another focal point of the course is open interviewing, which is similarly a very important and widely used qualitative research method, aimed at analyzing people’s way of understanding life and their place in it.

    Working method

    There are five sessions consisting of lectures, discussion and practical training. Participants can choose to follow the entire course (2.5 ECTS) or they can opt for one track (1.5 ECTS). The latter means that after the first mandatory session, participants can follow either a track on expert interviewing (day 1, 2 and 3) or a track on open interviewing (day 1, 4 and 5).

    Learning objectives

    After completing this course, participants will be able to:

    • Understand the background, development and use of interviewing as a research method
    • Understand the pros and cons and challenges and pitfalls of the method
    • Be able to conduct open and/or expert interviewing

    Required skill

    This course is designed for those with limited experience in open and expert interviewing.

    Session 1: Introduction to interviewing

    We will discuss crucial theoretical, methodological and practical concerns of qualitative interviewing, with a particular focus on the applicability of different types of qualitative interviewing for different types of research questions. We will explicate the knowledge-theoretical background of qualitative interviewing and look at how to incorporate the method within a specific research design. 

    Learning objectives:
    After completion of this course you will be able to:

    • Describe the knowledge-theoretical background of qualitative interviewing;
    • Explain different scientific approaches to interviewing;
    • Distinguish between different types of research questions for interview-based studies;
    • Make an informed decision about when and when not to use qualitative interviewing;
    • Argue how a specific type of qualitative interviewing fits your research design. 

    Session 1: How to prepare

    In order to actively participate in the first session, participants are required to read some literature (to be announced).

    Further, participants are asked to bring a short description (of no more than 400 words) of their own (existing or prospective) research to the session. This description should include:

    • A short introduction on the topic;
    • the research question, and;
    • the prospective method, describing the respondents, questions and structure of your interviews.

    If you are not (yet) conducting a study of your own, you may submit the design of a fictitious study.

    Please send your design to not later than a week before the start of the course. 

    About the instructor

    Dr. Samira van Bohemen is a postdoctoral researcher and lecturer at the Sociology department, where she currently studies young people and good sex(uality). She has ample experience with doing different types of social scientific research, also including quantitative methods, but she is most passionate about using qualitative methods and finding new and creative ways to incorporate them into her research.