Before the interview
Read the FASS Research Ethics for Coursework Subjects. This document outlines the principles of professional and ethical conduct of research.
1. Insert your relevant information in the Information sheet and Consent form, which are available on Canvas.
2. Finalise the interview questions you plan to ask.
3. ‘Rehearse’ the interview with a colleague or friend as if it were a real interview. This will help you to hear what the questions sound like when you ask them. You will also experience the skills of listening to the response and taking notes at the same time.
4. Identify a learner to interview. The learner may be:
• an English language learner at the institution where you are undertaking a practicum/ professional experience. In this case, you will need to discuss the assignment with the student’s teacher and seek their approval. You may want to ask the teacher to nominate a student.
• an international student at UTS whose mother tongue is not English. Please do not choose someone in your own course. UTS HELPS may give you assistance in identifying a student who is prepared to be interviewed.
• a student at UTS or elsewhere who is learning a language other than English. If you are recruiting such a student during your school or college placement, you will need to discuss the assignment with the student’s teacher and seek their approval. You may want to ask the teacher to nominate a student.
• someone you know – a neighbour or an acquaintance who is learning English or another language. If this person is under the age of 18, please discuss the assignment with one of their parents or guardian and seek their approval.
5. If you and your learner share the learner’s L1, you may conduct the interview in the learner’s L1.
6. Provide the learner with the Information sheet and answer any questions they have before the actual interview. With younger learners and/or learners who are beginner learners of English, you will need to read the Information sheet with them and paraphrase the words to ensure the learner understands. If you share their L1, you may translate the text to them. Arrange the interview time and location. If the learner is someone from your practicum/professional experience placement, your interview should be conducted on the college/school premises, or via phone or ZOOM if the placement is being undertaken remotely.
At the interview
1. Ask the learner to sign the consent form, explaining any section of the consent form that they do not understand. (See advice above about the Information sheet). If the learner does not provide consent, you may not proceed with the interview of this learner. Explain that you will be taking notes and recording the interview but that the notes and the recording will not be shared with anyone.
2. Ensure the learner is comfortable.
3. Explain that you will be asking them questions, and that they can ask you to explain any question they do not understand, and they can decide not to answer some of the questions.
4. Use the interview questions you have prepared to commence the interview.
5. Make sure you provide the learner enough time to respond. Do not rush them. If they do not seem to understand the question, ask it in another way. Help them with prompts.
6. Take notes of the learner’s responses. Feel free to extend some of your questions on the basis of the emerging information from the student. If you believe that extending the time of the interview would yield some valuable information, ask the learner first if they are happy to extend the time, and only do so if they agree.
7. However, if the learner starts to tell you something completely off the topic, politely and gently steer them back to the question you asked.
8. Thank the learner at the end of the interview.
After the interview
1. Read over the notes you took, and listen to the audio recording.
2. Draft a descriptive profile of the learner with the data from the interview.
3. Identify at least 3 subject readings that will help you analyse the key aspects of the draft profile.
4. Using the readings, analyse those aspects. What do they reveal about this multilingual learner’s experiences?
5. Draft the learner profile report.
6. Edit, proofread and submit the learner profile report.