Ps & Qs Of Interviews


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Teach your journalism students to "mind their Ps and Qs" when interviewing sources. These simple tips will help students become more professional interviewers and better communicators overall.

There are video examples at the end that you can watch with your students and ask them what the interviewer did well or not so well.

There is a worksheet that can be used with this as well. Find it here:

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  • What’s rapport? Good reputation
  • Ps & Qs Of Interviews

    1. 1. P’s & Q’s of Interviews<br />How to mind your manners when talking to sources<br />
    2. 2. Why mind your manners?<br />You’re on the student publication (newspaper, yearbook)<br />You need to be professional!<br />Build rapport so when you want to talk to them in the future they think “Oh, yes they were so nice to talk to.”<br />
    3. 3. So you know who you want to talk to…now what?<br />You’ve come up with your story idea<br />You’ve thought who would be the best sources<br />Now what do you do??<br />
    4. 4. Make an appointment<br />Once you choose your source make an appointment to talk to them<br />If administrator call or visit their office<br />Don’t wait till the last minute and expect them to talk to you right now<br />If possible, let them choose where to meet with you<br />
    5. 5. Why?<br />Administrators and teachers are busy busy people<br />It’s rude to just barge in and assume they have time for you<br />If they don’t have time…then you lose the interview! <br />Interviewing them in a place they’re comfortable is always best!<br />
    6. 6. Come prepared! <br />Have your questions ready and be ready to write<br />Know a little bit about your source (if it’s the basketball coach know how long he’s been coaching)<br />
    7. 7. Why?<br />You’ll look more professional if you’re ready for your interview<br />You can always ask different questions but it’s good to be ready<br />You don’t want to forget anything important!<br />
    8. 8. Introduce Yourself<br />Shake hands<br />Introduce yourself <br />Tell them what publication your with<br />Take the time to explain what the story is about and why they’re an important source<br />SPEAK SLOWLY!!!!<br />
    9. 9. Why?<br />This can help relax the subject<br />It lets them know who you are and why you want to talk to them<br />
    10. 10. Taking notes & Listening<br />Make sure you listen<br />If your source is talking too fast ask him/her to slow down(politely of course)<br />If you miss something or don’t understand, ASK! They won’t mind!! <br />You don’t have to follow your interview questions in order.<br />
    11. 11. Why?<br />You want to quote them correctly!<br />It’s better to ask them to slow down or repeat than to get something wrong<br />
    12. 12. Ending the Interview <br />Ask them if they have anything else they want to add<br />Thank the person for their time<br />Let them know you’ll get in touch with them if you have more questions<br />
    13. 13. Why?<br />They may have something to say that you didn’t ask about<br />You may have questions later and may need to get back in touch with them<br />