Interview Methods and data analysis


Manuel Lisboa

Full Professor at NOVA FCSH

Theory and Methodology; Gender studies; Domestic Violence; Sociology of Violence; Sociology of Organizations; Sociology of Emotions; Leadership and Innovation



Ana Roque Dantas

PhD, Invited Assistant Professor at NOVA FCSH

Research methods; Data analysis; Content analysis; Sociology of emotions; Happiness


1. Objectives

This course aims to introduce participants to core interview methods, namely in-depth interviews and life histories. Participants will be given the main stages of the interviewing process, such as, data gathering (sample selection, script construction, interviewing techniques), and data analysis (how to uncover the underlying information structure through content analysis and multiple correspondence analysis). Sessions will have a lecture format, but students’ participation is strongly encouraged.


2. Useful applications

The course aims to engage participants in interviewing methods and data analysis techniques for qualitative data. Participants will gain the knowledge and skills to begin to apply interview methods based on the different phases of the data gathering process. The course will provide these basic instruments to successfully deal with hard to observe (and interpret) social phenomena.


3. Specific requirements to attend the course

English proficiency. No other specific requirements are necessary to attend the course.


4. Syllabus and day-to-day schedule

The first session will provide an introduction to the variety of the more usual instruments and methodologies used in research in social sciences, as well as to sample selection techniques and guidelines for the preparation of the field work.

The second session will provide students with techniques to develop interviews scripts and life histories.

The third session will focus on content analysis, namely on how to transpose data from interviews and life histories to a content analysis framework that will enable the construction of a database for statistical use.

The fourth session will be dedicated to the quantitative data analysis of qualitative data, specifically the Multiple Correspondence Analysis, regarding its theoretical framework, application, and practical applications in social sciences’ research.


Day 1: Sampling and field work preparation

Readings: Brinkmann (2013); Foddy (1993); Guest, Namey & Mitchell (2013); Lisboa  (ed.) (2016).

Day 2: Overview of the interviewing process in social sciences

Readings: Brinkmann (2013); Foddy (1993); Guest, Namey & Mitchell (2013); Lisboa  (ed.) (2016).

Day 3: Analyzing qualitative data using Content analysis

Readings: Bardin (1977); Guerra (2006); Krippendorff, Klaus. (2004); Neuendorf (2002).

Day 4: Quantitative analysis for qualitative data: The Multiple Correspondence Analysis approach

Readings: Carvalho (2008); Greenacre (2017); Greenacre & Blasius (eds.) (2006); Le Roux & Rouanet (2004); Le Roux & Rouanet (2010).


5. Assessment

For students willing so, grading will be based on a final essay quoting a minimum of 5 references of the main bibliography. Maximum number of pages (Cambria, 12, spacing 1,5), including bibliography: 5. Deadline: 2020/02/28.


6. ECTS / certificate

2 ECTS, for students having successfully made the assessment.

N.B. – In order to have a presence certificate, an attendance >50% is required.


7. Bibliography

Bardin, L. (1977). L’analyse de contenu. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France (**)

Brinkmann, S. (2013). Qualitative interviewing. Oxford: Oxford University Press (**)

Carvalho, H. (2008). Análise multivariada de dados qualitativos – Utilização da ACM com o SPSS. Lisboa: Sílabo (***)

Foddy, W. (1993). Constructing questions for interviews and questionnaires: theory and practice in social research. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (*)

Greenacre, M, & Blasius, J. (Eds.) (2006). Multiple correspondence analysis and related methods. Boca Raton: Chapman & Hall/CRC (**)

Greenacre, M. (2017). Correspondence analysis in practice. Boca Raton: CRC Press (**)

Guerra, I. (2006). Pesquisa qualitativa e análise de conteúdo: sentidos e formas de uso. Lisboa: Lucerna (**)

Guest, G., Namey, E., & Mitchell, M. (2013). Collecting qualitative data: a field manual for applied research. Thousand Oaks: SAGE (**)

Krippendorff, K. (2004). Content Analysis: An Introduction to Its Methodology. Thousand Oaks: SAGE (*)

Le Roux, B., & Rouanet, H. (2004). Geometric data analysis: from correspondence analysis to structured data analysis. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers (**)

Le Roux, B., & Rouanet, H. (2010). Multiple correspondence analysis. Thousand Oaks: SAGE (**)

Lisboa, M. (Ed.) (2016). Metodologias de investigação sociológica: problemas e soluções a partir de estudos empíricos. Vila Nova de Famalicão: Húmus (***)

Neuendorf, K. (2002). The Content Analysis Guidebook. Thousand Oaks: SAGE (*)


(*) Available online

(**) Provided by the instructor

(***) Available at NOVA FCSH library


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