Semi-Structured Interview Questions
Part 1 – Background Information
Part 2 – Attitude Toward Libraries
- Have you always lived on (insert name of reservation here)?
If not, ask how long and where else the person has lived.
- What is your education level?
- How would you describe your literacy level?
- Do you own a vehicle?
If so, is it their primary mode of transportation?
If not, what is their primary mode of transportation?
Part 3 – Information Need
- What comes to mind when you hear the word library?
- Have you ever been to a public library?
If no, go to question 3, then skip to question 5
If yes, skip to question 4.
- What are your reasons for never having been to a public library?
- Which libraries have you visited?
- What have been your experiences visiting these libraries?
Possible areas to explore: attitudes of librarians, availability of services, availability of materials sought, degree of feeling welcome, etc.
- How would you feel if tomorrow there were no such thing as libraries? Why?
- If you were to design the ideal library, what would it be and what would it look like?
Part 4 – Barriers to Information
- Think of a recent time when you needed to figure out how to do something that you'd never done before. Where did you go for the information? (Possible follow up: Why?)
- Now think of a recent time when you had a question that you did not have the answer to. Where did you go for that information? (Possible follow up: Why?)
- (If libraries were never mentioned) Did you ever consider going to a library or calling a library for that information? Why or why not?
- When you have a question (whether it is simple or hard) how easy is it for you to get a good answer? Where do you usually turn to for the answer?
- Think of a time when you had a question or needed to figure out how to do something when you could not find the answer. What did you do? How did this make you feel?
- If you knew you needed to go somewhere off-reservation to get the answer to a question, how easy or difficult would it be for you to go find it? (Possible follow up: Why?)
- How comfortable would you feel if you had to go to a library you've never been to before and ask for help in order to solve a problem you have? (Possible follow up: Why?)
- Have you ever felt that your literacy level or education level has gotten in the way of you being able to solve a problem? (Possible follow up: What did you do?)
- Are there any services that a library could offer to you that would make you feel more comfortable or more likely to approach the library with information questions?
- Are there any suggestions you have for libraries that would make them better places for you or the people you know living on the (insert name of reservation here)?