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How to write an interview paper: great tips for success



How to Write an Interview Paper

What is an interview paper? How does it differ from a common essay? If you ask yourself these questions, you are assigned to write an interview paper. 

In general, it is one of the essay types, which offers the readers a chance to get to know a wide variety of views on the topic with the help of the evidence taken from the interviews with some people. Learning how to write an interview paper, you have to know the difference between such a text and an essay as the former does not use books or articles as a source of information, but authoritative people.  

An interview essay presents a particular event, topic, or theme based on a dialogue with people who have the required knowledge and can share their opinions. The answers serve as evidence for the paper in the same way as reliable book sources serve in writing research papers. The students make lists of questions that they ask the interviewees to discuss some events or concepts. This paper has its own academic style and structure. 

Interview essay writing is common for students with ambitions to work in journalism. The readers require high-quality data on the topics that currently matter. Thus, journalists interview competent experts. For instance, when discussing outstanding personalities from the sports industry, it makes sense to contact coaches and mental health psychologists.

The focus of an excellent interview paper is on direct communication with the readers so that they could feel involved in the discussion. It means that the interviews should be conducted in an informal way that can be interesting for others. In addition, it is essential to choose a knowledgeable person able to give valid information from an unexpected perspective. 

In general, the work on such papers has the following order: 1) creating questions; 2) meeting experts; 3) asking questions and receiving answers; 4) analyzing the outputs; 5) writing an essay; 6) making a summary. However, this is only a brief description. Now let’s have a look at how students make their interview papers excel.

Fundamentals of article writing for interviews

Working on an academic essay, you have to make your solid arguments based on statistics, already conducted studies, and previous research. However, writing an interview paper is different. You will use expert opinions to shape and present your own assumptions. 

You will let the readers know what the expert thinks about a certain issue. You get a transcript and then add an introduction and conclusion to your paper. Check your specific instructions to understand how long your paper should be. Typically, the length is from 2,000 to 5,000 words. 

Expert tips for working on interview essays

Is it your first attempt to write an interview paper? It actually does not matter when it comes to following the basic rules of working on such papers. Follow our tips and achieve the best possible results:

  • Learn how to make smart questions
  • Study the details you have collected from the interviewed experts
  • Use quoting
  • Add a list of references to your paper
  • Analyze your written text carefully 
  • Polish and review what you have written

Step-by-step instruction on how to write an interview essay

  1.  Identify the purpose of your interview paper.

This will allow you to formulate the topic of the paper and determine your audience. You have to find an expert who has enough knowledge to give you all the details you need for your essay. Only an authoritative specialist can make your readers interested in the topic and give valuable details on this theme.

  1. Write a list of questions.

Questions form the basis for your interview paper. After thorough in-depth research, it is easier to complete a list of good questions. We recommend having a combination of open-ended and direct questions as it is a great approach that ensures getting interpretations and explanations from an expert.  

  1. Get in touch with the interviewer and get ready.

After you have completed a list of questions, it is time to get in touch with the chosen professional. Choose only reputable experts and good specialists for an interview. Introduce yourself and let this expert know about the purpose of your interview and the reasons why he or she is the most suitable person for it. We recommend getting several alternative options as it may happen that for some reason the chosen respondent might be not interested in answering your questions. 

  1. Organize a rehearsal.

Before you meet the chosen expert, it is good to organize some training. You can ask your family members or friends to help you. Thus, you will understand what challenges you may face during an actual interview and get ready for them. 

  1. Do an interview.

It is important to choose a nice location for an interview. The best variant is a quiet place, such as a park, a library room, or some office. It is also important to be punctual. Some interviews are conducted in-person, while others may be conducted via some electronic means, phone, or video call. After you have talked to the expert, you should write down your impressions and thoughts right away so that you don’t forget them later. Do not forget to mention how much you appreciate the help of your interviewed expert and how much you value their effort and time as well as an insight into the topic.

  1. Develop an outline. Do the formatting.

So, you have gathered a lot of details and it is your chance to craft an essay that will make your readers excited. What is the next step you should take? Now it is time to develop an essay outline and then structure your writing. You should mind the smooth flow of thoughts in the paragraphs and between them. For sure, there should be an introductory paragraph, body paragraphs, and then a paragraph of your conclusion. 

Outlining an interview paper

Plan your interview writing according to the following structure: 

  • Introduction: 

You should decide on the way you want to start your writing and finalize it. In the first paragraph, you should include the key question of your interview. Your discovery may either be based on the comments from the people you have interviewed or present a situation that encouraged you to choose exactly this question. For instance, you are working on an essay about giving money to beggars. You can begin with some story, real or imaginary, about a man you met on the street who asked you to give him some money.  An introduction can also contain some statistics or comprise the questions you would like to discuss in your interview. A quote, lines from the song, reference to some popular TV show or movie are also appropriate for this part. 

  • The body:

In this section, discuss the issues raised one by one. You have had a list of reasons why you decided to take this topic and now it is time to discuss them. Paraphrasing, citing, and summarization are appropriate methods for this part. 

  • Conclusion: 

Give your ideas on the topic. Give your interpretations and explanations about the points of view of other people and your attitude to them. It is fine not to agree with the opinions of the experts. In that case, you have to mention that with your comments on the reasons why you cannot accept that approach. 


You do know how to write an interview paper now, and we believe that you will do everything correctly. Still, we would like to remind you to try your best and avoid typical students’ mistakes. Reread your paper and make all the changes before you submit it. 

Get inspired and you will be successful!

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