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Narrative Interview Paper Guidelines Each student will conduct 2 separate inter


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Narrative Interview Paper Guidelines
Each student will conduct 2 separate interviews and use the data/responses to write a narrative essay. Students will be responsible for locating, arranging and conducting separate in-depth interviews with two individuals: (i) a professional gerontological social worker who has worked in the past or currently works in a professional capacity, directly with older adult clients, and (ii) an older adult person aged 65 or higher. A student may interview a family relative for this paper. Below are examples of questions student may use for their interviews.
Questions to ask – Gerontological Direct Service Worker
1. Describe the things or circumstances that influenced your decision to work with older adults?
2. What are your job responsibilities?
3. Describe the clients you serve (e.g., age range, income level, gender, etc.) in your agency.
4. What types of client needs or problems do you deal with?
5. Besides your salary or income, tell me about some of the aspects of your work with older adults that are rewarding to you.
6. What would you describe as the critical challenges you face in providing services to older adult clients?
7. How do you deal (personally and /or agency-assistance) with the challenges or problems identified (in question 6 above)?
8. Based on your experience, what practice skills are critical in working with older adult clients?
Question to ask – Older adult Person
1. Age, gender, marital status, place of birth, employment (working part-time, full-time, retired)
2. What is it like growing up?
3. How would you describe your current life situation (may include: health, income, family support, friendship network, values, role in family, etc.)?
4. What do you attribute your current life situation to? (Example: good/bad health habit, family support, education, friends, regular exercise, personal characteristics, etc.)
5. What would you say are the most critical challenges or problems you face at this time of your life? Or what are some of the things that prevent you from doing the things you would like to do?
6. Do you know of any social service agencies in your city/county that can help you deal with the challenges mentioned (question 4 above)? (Examples: hospice, nursing home, private practice, assisted-living, county social service department, senior day care, senior service center, area agency on aging, church, university, etc.). If yes, mention them.
7. Have you received services from any of these social service agencies mentioned above? Or have you attend any of the activities organized by these agencies mentioned above. If yes, describe the services you received. If no, tell me what services you think these services provide to older adults?
8. What are your expectations of people who work in agencies who provide services to older adults?
a. Students must familiarize themselves with the grading rubrics for this assignment to ensure that all items to be graded are covered in the paper.
b. Paper should follow APA style for social work and other social science majors (or MLA for students majoring in the humanities).
c. Entire paper (excluding title and reference pages) should not exceed 8 pages.
d. Paper must be submitted on time (late paper will not be accepted)
Grading Rubric for Agency Service Assessment
• Is the topic of the paper clearly and concisely introduced?
• Does the introduction include a clear and concise thesis statement?
• Does the information forecast the remainder of the paper for the reader? Points
Body of the Paper
• Does the paper summarize and narrate the main themes of the interviews?
• Does the paper provide examples and quotations to help the reader understand points made?
• Is all information drawn from the interviews
• Are personal experience shared relevant to responses provided by interviewees?
• Does the paper provide excellent background, and include detail discussion?
• Does the paper integrate theories, lessons, etc. learn from the course into essay?
• Does the paper reflect the required content as outlined in the assignment guideline?
• Is there a conclusion?
• Does the paper provide a brief summary of what has been discussed?
• Are conclusions consistent with information discussed in the body of the paper?
Style, References & Citations
• Does the paper follow APA style?
• Is the paper well organized?
• Is the paper free from grammar & spelling errors?
• Are there smooth transitions between sections?
Total Points ____/
Tips for Fieldwork:
1. Prepare ahead of time: write down your questions before the interview or forum. You many give your questions to the interviewee before meeting, if possible.
2. Listen carefully and ask follow up question, in necessary.
3. Take short notes and expand them later. Make sure your note taking does not “interfere” with the “flow” of interview.
4. Put the interviewee at ease by telling them the purpose of your project, how you will use what they tell you, and assure them of anonymity and confidentiality
5. Make sure that interviewee is knowledgeable about issues at hand.
6. Focus the interview/discussion on the topic at hand and keep him/her on track
7. Comply with any restrictions the interviewee puts on your use of data provided .
8. Note that your safety is paramount; remove yourself from any uncomfortable and/or unsafe situation.
Bibliography for Data Gathering Sources and Methods, and Tips for Fieldwork:
Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records (2008). Community needs assessment. Retrieved from on 01/01/2010.
PRIME II Publications (n.d.). Data gathering methods. Retrieved from on 01/01/2010.
Writing a narrative essay from interview
Note I:
In narrative interview, it is critical to frame your question in such a way that allow the interviewees to tell their “stories about their experiences in their own way and from their own perspective”. Guide to writing a narrative-style paper.
1. Introduce the situation and the interviewee: Begin the narrative with an introduction of the situation, the interviewee and the purpose of the interview. This introduction should summarize the main idea of the new story or the interview itself and describe the interviewee in a way that connects with the interview.
2. Use direct quotes: Integrate the quotes throughout the narrative of the piece where they are appropriate. Be sure to use proper attribution, using quotation marks to contain sections that are the interviewee’s exact words. Support the quotes with other details rather than presenting them in a list form.
3. Shape the story around the quotes: As the interviewee answers questions, record not just the quotes, but also the emotions, body language, style of speech and other details. Use this information to shape the narrative when writing it. The goal of the narrative interview is to present the entirety of the story with first-hand accounts, not to provide just a list of questions and answers.
(Excerpts from:
Note II:
1. When beginning a narrative essay or speech, the author should set up the context of the story by establishing the setting, environment and circumstances that were involved. For example, the narrative may begin with a sentence such as “It was a bitter cold evening in Boston when I walked out the door to embark on this journey.” The introduction or “hook” is designed to engage the reader’s interest right away and introduce how the story began. The introduction should also include a thesis statement that sets the focus for the piece and hints that something significant is about to be revealed.
2. Next, the author should detail the specifics of the story, carefully maintaining the sequence of events. Once the narrative has reached its climax and resolution, the conclusion of the piece should focus on the lessons learned or the significance of the events. The conclusion should be a reflection on the story as a whole, offering thoughts, feelings and descriptive emotions to highlight the symbolism and purpose of the story.
(Excerpts from:


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