Prep for 9May class of Academic Conversations

Final class for semester (maybe)

The last class will be getting to know one another more deeply. Each pair will interview for 15-30 min and then switch. You can record the conversation, make a video or type up your answers, whatever makes both interviewer and interviewee comfortable. Please bring whatever you would like to use for your interview (cell phone to record, video camera, laptop…) to class on Friday May 9. If there is time we will watch/listen to the interviews on the same day or if we need more time we can plan another class the following week.


interviews will be the following pairs:

Walden & Kyle

Josh & Oslo

Bella & Jack


Please communicate with your partner before the next class and let them know if you would like your questions ahead of time to help you think about your answers.


Here is some info from different sources to guide you with the interview process:


When interviewing Listen as much or more than you talk. Some people consider themselves skilled communicators because they can talk endlessly. But the ability to speak is only one part of the equation—and not the most important part. The best communication occurs with an even and equal exchange between two people. Think of conversation as a tennis match in which the players lob the ball back and forth. Each person gets a turn—and no one hogs the ball. If you don’t understand someones answer, ask for clarification.


Genuine interest goes a long way. It’s exciting to be able to get to know another human being and get a peek into his or her world. Great communication starts with being genuinely interested in the individual you’re with and paying close attention to what he/she says. The process begins by providing lots of space for the full expression of information and asking follow-up questions to further draw out the one talking.


Start the conversation normally —

Don’t just go rattle off question after question; let the question you ask naturally lead into a conversation. Once they tell you if they prefer theater or movies, probe into what about their choice makes it preferable.

Please review the google doc sent for samples of questions. Feel free to use whatever questions appeal to you or come up with your own. During the interview let the conversation evolve spontaneously and add, change or scrap questions as you see fit. Remember the whole point is to really help others to get to know the person you are interviewing and find out some interesting new things about them. If you would like an example of a great interviewer listen to Terry Gross on NPR.

Have fun!


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