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Quality & Quantity

, Volume 49, Issue 1, pp 319–338 | Cite as

Children’s verbal, interactive and cognitive skills and implications for interviews

  • Susanne Vogl
Article

Abstract

Child respondents challenge social scientists because their verbal, interactive, and cognitive skills are not just different from those of adults, but also vary among children. To develop adequate methods for interviewing children, we need to learn more about those skills in interview settings and their dependence on age. Based on 112 semi-structured interviews with children aged 5–11 years, we studied children’s verbal, cognitive, and interactive skills. Fifty-six children were each interviewed twice, once face to face and once via telephone. Through an innovative triangulation of qualitative and quantitative analyses, children’s skills and related gains and limitations of each interview mode were examined. The applicability of semi-structured interviews was evaluated with skills and respondent’s age in mind, and recommendations for conducting interviews are made.

Keywords

Children’s skills Qualitative interview Semi-structured interview  Children as respondents Age effect Mixed methods 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This study was supported by Maximilian-Bickhoff-Universtitätsstiftung.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Catholic University Eichstaett-IngolstadtEichstaettGermany

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