module 5 assignment 2a interview doctoral researchers

Module 5 Assignment 2a: Interview Doctoral Researchers

Please note that this assignment is to be completed in two parts. M5A2a is to be completed and submitted to the M5A2a Submission Area and responses to M5A2b are to be posted to the M5A2b Discussion Area.

During this course, you have begun to understand that a dissertation is a multi-faceted research project. You may have heard of the term ABD (all but dissertation). There are a sizeable number of doctoral students who have completed their coursework, passed their comprehensive examinations, but never have completed their dissertations.

You may wonder how this might happen. For example, were these students who did not complete their dissertations really scholarly impostors who did not possess sufficient knowledge and skills? What can you do to avoid this?

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This assignment requires you to interview two people who have successfully completed doctoral programs.

Your goal in this assignment is to carefully consider and organize the body of your paper around these three key ideas:

  • What most assisted your interviewees in completing their major research projects or dissertations?
  • What challenges did your interviewees experience?
  • What specific recommendations do your interviewees have for successful completion?

Use the following guidelines as you conduct your interview to help you achieve the above three goals:

  • Select individuals to interview, if possible, who are not AU faculty or staff members, since one purpose of this assignment is to broaden your perspectives regarding conducting doctoral research.
  • Each interview should take 30–45 minutes, depending on how responsive your interviewees are.
  • You may conduct your interviews in person or by phone.
    Prior to meeting your interviewees, develop 10–15 interview questions you will ask each of them that will hep you to address the above three goals. It is important to ask the same questions to both.
  • The first question or two should help you understand their research topics and why the topics were of interest to your interviewees. In addition it could be very useful to your research to ask questions like these: What tips do they have for locating good materials, especially research articles? How long did it take the interviewee from start to finish? What resources were required, such as technology, postage, and other costs? Another important area of information concerns the role of the committee chair and the committee members.
  • Several questions should be asked to help you explore what assisted each person the most in completing the research or dissertation.
  • Trying to understand the challenges each interviewee faced will also require several questions.
  • As you conduct each interview, you may ask related, follow up questions to help you better understand each interviewee’s response, such as: “Could you give me a specific example of what you meant when you said …?” or “Could you provide a little more detail about …?” This will help you provide details in your paper as well as enhance your understanding of the challenges faced.
  • Toward the end of your interview, ask what recommendations each interviewee could provide to help you be successful in the completion of your dissertation.
  • In order to capture the information from the interview, be prepared to take detailed notes. Some students even request permission to tape record their interviews so they can replay and listen to them to better understand the information provided by each interviewee.

Collate the information gathered from your interviews. Write a three- to four-page analysis comparing and contrasting the information from the two interviews. Do not present the analysis in a question and answer format.

Consider the following as you write your paper:

  • Introductory Paragraph: Begin your paper with a purpose statement and a map of how you intend to organize your paper. Using the 3 main goals listed above as broad themes/categories with sub headings could be a most useful way to organize this paper. Be sure to also include in this introductory paragraph the name of each or pseudonym [if confidentiality is needed] as well as the basic nature of their research or dissertation study.
  • Your paper should be an analysis of the interviews and a comparison of their experiences, not just a summary of each specific question asked.
  • Attach your interview questionnaire to the end of your paper.

By the due date assigned, post your interview analysis in Microsoft Word format to the Submissions Area.

Name your file W7000_M5_A2a_lastname_firstinitial.doc.

All written assignments and responses should follow APA style in formatting and attributing sources.

Please make sure you review the elements of the grading criteria and associated points carefully and make sure your assignment has addressed all the elements and in enough detail to merit full points.

Assignment 2a Grading Criteria Maximum Points
Crafted a comprehensive interview questionnaire including questions to elicit a comprehensive description.
Included questions as an appendix.


Analyzed the interviews and discussed key concepts that were generated related to the research and/or dissertation process..


Discussed the knowledge, skills, abilities, and resources required, and challenges/barriers that impacted completion


Submitted the assignment in an organized format in APA Style with minimal grammatical and mechanical errors.




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