INTERVIEW PREPARATION AND POST-TASK CHECKLIST
_____ 1 week prior to interview: Contact interviewee and make sure that they remember the
correct date, time, and place of interview. Mention again which topics you hope to cover
to allow interviewee adequate time to prepare for the interview. (It is often helpful if an
interview outline is sent to the interviewee prior to the actual interview).
_____ 1 day before the interview: Be sure to call at least one day before the interview to
reconfirm and make sure that there are no problems that might interfere with your
planned agenda (i.e., poor health, bad weather or inability to make on-site visit).
Day of Interview:
_____ All equipment is available and in working order (microphone, necessary cords, extra
batteries, extra tapes, maps, photos, drawings, vehicle).
_____ Interview outline has been completed.
_____ Several (at least 3) tapes have been advanced for 15 seconds to provide ample space for
an introduction to be added later.
_____ Interview Consent Form has been read and discussed with interviewee. All questions
have been answered completely. Possibility of interviewee placing restrictions on future
use of information has been explained. Interviewee has signed Interview Consent Form
and copy of form has been given to them to keep.
_____ Before beginning the taped interview discuss informally with the interviewee the range of
topics you hope to cover.
_____ Test recording equipment to insure that conversation will be picked up. Check the
recording level and move microphone to a position where it will pick up all participants,
talking in a conversational tone. If taped recording (audio/video) of interview is not
possible take good notes throughout the interview and record all site locations on
U.S.G.S. 7.5 Minute Quadrangle maps.
_____ Conduct interview. Be attentive to the length of the recording and make sure that the tape
is flipped over when side 1 has been completed. If the interviewee appears tired or
attention drifts, ask if interview should be rescheduled to a later date.
_____ Interview notes taken during interview. When referring to maps during the interview,
make sure that a reference location and/or name is stated to provide a focus for the tape
recording. Statements such as "this site here" or "the trail follows from here to here" tell
you nothing unless you know where "here" is. U.S.G.S. 15 Minute Quadrangle maps
(Scale 1:62,500) should be used to orient the interviewee to the general area. All site
locations should be plotted on 7.5 Minute Quadrangles. During on-site interviews, make
sure that 7.5 Minute Quadrangle maps are used.
After the Interview:
_____ Discuss with interviewee the range of topics you would like to discuss at the next
interview. Schedule a tentative date for this interview.
_____ Introduction has been added to each tape.
_____ Make copy of tape, punch out recording tabs on original tape and copy, and place original
tape in vault or safe storage area.
_____ Complete Oral History Interview Summary Form and add interview data to Tape Index
_____ Attach copies of all interview notes to the Interview Summary Form and store file in
project oral history file.
_____ Were photographs taken? Attach a list of all photographs taken to the interview notes.
This list should include a description of each photo, the total number of photos taken,
film roll number and the location of the film.
_____ Complete all Oral History Cultural Resource Inventory Forms. Plot site location(s) and
boundaries on U.S.G.S. 7.5 Minute Quadrangle maps. Attach copy of site map to
Cultural Resource Inventory Form(s).