User Research: The Art of Conducting Research Interviews | St. Louis

About this class

Most user research classes concentrate on important practical and pragmatic tactics. While this scientific approach is necessary, unfortunately many key nuances of the “art” are often omitted.

This class addresses that gap by focusing on the personal interactions, skills and other subtleties talented interviewers employ to ensure meaningful conversations.

You’ll see, practice, and get feedback on how to successfully begin an interview, develop a rapport with participants, dig deeper, create sound bites, get out of difficult situations and wrap up while leaving the door open for future correspondence. We’ll also discuss when it’s appropriate to deviate from your guide (gasp!) and why.

After this class, you will feel more confident preparing for and moderating conversations. Students will be able to apply tips tricks on how to prepare for interviews, identify and handle difficult participants, and other gotcha situations in advance. This confidence will translate into more meaningful discussions and in turn improve the data you collect.


  • Learn the key components to conducting successful research interviews
  • Set yourself, team, stakeholders and interviewees up for success
  • Get to know your interviewees before your session begins
  • Techniques to build rapport and keep participants focused
  • Ensure your questions are covered in the session time allotted
  • Pros and cons of in-person versus remote interviewing and artifact gathering
  • Get out of sticky situations (tech problems, inappropriate participants, safety tips...)
  • Evaluate moderator performance (checklist)
  • Develop greater confidence in preparing and conducting meaningful interviews
  • Avoid bias

Prereqs & Preparation

The students just need a laptop or tablet to take notes.

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