The validity and reliability of the results of standardised interviews

Date of publication: June 15, 1971

Author: L. Berekoven


The quantitive and qualitative productivity of interviews depends upon many factors. To these belong also the interviewers themselves, who under certain circumstances can exercise a considerable influence on the interview situation and on the outcome of the enquiry. The tendency is, in the case of standardised interviews, for the chance or the danger of such influence by the interviewer to be minimised, because in such a case there is no possibility of variation in the putting of the questions and their order. The many problems that nevertheless remain, and the additional difficulties that arise as a result of standardisation are thoroughly discussed on a theoretical basis in the literature. Unfortunately, however, there is a lack, both by number and extent, of practical investigations of this group of questions (or of publication of the results thereof!) that would make it possible to verify, to improve and to evaluate these theoretical questions. In this connection it was interesting to link up with two larger surveys which were carried out under the author's leadership within the framework of the seminar for market and consumer research at the Friedrich-Alexander University at Erlangen-Nuremberg, a detailed questioning of the interviewer (about his experience when interviewing people in Nuremberg - an enquiry into enquiries, in fact), and to evaluate the results .

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