Prior to conducting any interview, it is important to plan and prepare, so you get the most out of your conversation. This includes planning to ensure that the interviewee is as comfortable and accommodated as possible, and also planning your interview to ensure that you don’t forget to cover any topics important to your investigation.
This module takes you through the “Plan and Prepare” phase of the PEACE model, in which you will learn how to best approach your interview through creating interview objectives, finding interviewee information, making logistical arrangements (including interpreter arrangements), mapping out your interview route, and psychologically preparing. By utilising these skills, you will be able to conduct an efficient, effective, and secure interview.
In Module 3, you will:
● Learn the key steps to plan and prepare for an interview and understand what each step entails
● Discover possible techniques to psychologically prepare for an interview with a person who has experienced trauma
● Understand how to integrate gender and disability considerations into the planning and preparation phase of an interview
● Understand the importance of safeguarding the safety, security, confidentiality and privacy of the interviewee
● Acknowledge key considerations of working with interpreters
✓ The ‘Plan and Prepare’ phase is essential to have an effective, efficient and trauma-informed interview. When preparing an interview plan, the interviewer is advised to go through a number of steps, including identifying interview objectives, finding/collecting information about the interviewee, making logistical arrangements, mapping out the interview route, and ensuring psychological preparedness.
✓ Being involved in an interview with a person who has suffered/is suffering from trauma may have an impact on the interviewer’s and the interpreter’s wellbeing. Therefore, it is essential to be emotionally and psychologically prepared. It is important to be aware of our limitations and our own state of mind before the interview and consider what may constitute a trigger.
✓ It is important to consider that the interviewee may have strong preferences on who interviews them. Whenever possible, ensure that your team of monitors has a diverse skill set and a gender composition that can accommodate people’s preferences. Facilitating the interviewee’s participation in the interview and their (physical) access to the interview location might have a positive impact on the outcome of the interview itself.
✓ It is the responsibility of the interviewer to ensure secure communication with the interviewee and consider conducting the interview in a place that is safe, quiet, and facilitates preservation of privacy and confidentiality.
✓ The language in which the interview is conducted is a key element to ensure that the interviewee feels comfortable opening up. If an interprerer is needed, it is important to ensure that the person is highly trained, knowledgable about trauma-informed interview practices, able to provide verbatim first-person translation, and aware of the possible impact of this type of interview on wellbeing. The interviewer has a responsibility to brief and prepare the interpreter for the interview, ensuring there is no conflict of interest.
✓ As much as possible, it is advised to avoid conducting an interview with a person who has already been interviewed for similar purposes.
Before moving on to the quiz, please check out the additional resources provided under the “Materials” tab above.
- OHCHR Manual on Human Rights Monitoring, Chapter 2: "Basic Principles of Human Rights Monitoring"
Read over the Human Rights Monitoring Principles and think about how they would apply in a trauma-informed interview.
- OHCHR Manual on Human Rights Monitoring, Chapter 11: "Interviewing"
Please read section C of Chapter 11 of the OHCHR guide on human rights monitoring.
- Guidelines: "IICI Guidelines on Remote Interviewing"
This course focuses on trauma-informed interviewing techniques during in-person interviews. In fluid contexts such as armed conflict, in-person interviews are not always possible. Have a look at this resource to learn a bit more about how to conduct remote monitoring.