Survey Guidelines

Face-to-Face Surveys

The Face-to-Face interview by interviewers offers a number of advantages. This mode of questioning makes it possible, for example, to investigate complex issues, as the interviewer can give more comprehensive explanations of questions and tasks than is possible in self-administered modes of questioning. In addition, the interviewer can motivate the respondent to answer the questions completely. It is also possible to carry out tests, such as a gripping force test or competence tests, within the framework of personal interviews. However, the personal oral interview also carries the risk that the interviewers have an effect on the respondents' answering behaviour. In addition, personal interviews are significantly more cost-intensive, time-consuming and have a longer field time than the other survey modes. This article examines the advantages and disadvantages of this survey mode and discusses further aspects of conducting personal oral interviews.

Schröder, J. (2016). Face-to-Face Surveys. GESIS Survey Guidelines. Mannheim, Germany: GESIS – Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences. doi: 10.15465/gesis-sg_en_005