Oral History Interview
a. Process: What did you learn about the technical parts of conducting an oral history interview? What aspect did you find most challenging? What aspect was most enjoyable?
I thought finding a quiet place was difficult. My interviewee lives in a somewhat noisy neighborhood so finding a quiet space was difficult. The most enjoyable was when we would laugh whenever we had to do multiple takes because of a dog barking or cars honking.
b. Content: What did you learn about the topic that you didn’t already know?
I learned that there were impactful marches in West Virginia that I didn’t know of and not only just in WV, but in Charleston WV where I’m from.
c. The experience overall: In previous modules, you learned about oral history. You had the chance to gain an understanding of what oral history is and what it is designed to do. You read about interview tips and best practices. And, you had the opportunity to examine closely one audio and/or video oral history and evaluate it. How did conducting an oral history interview feel?Share your reactions:
It felt pretty nerve racking. I was nervous that my interviewee would go into dept in an answer and unknowingly answer a question I haven’t asked yet, so I’d have to come up with more questions on the spot.
d. Inquiry Based Thinking: While this reflection assignment in particular emphasizes metacognitive thinking, the Oral History Interview Final project mainly requires Inquiry Based Thinking. Based on the definition of Inquiry Based thinking, discuss how you think this assignment meets (or not) this learning outcome.
DEFINITION: Inquiry Based Thinking – Students will formulate focused questions and hypotheses, evaluate existing knowledge, collect and analyze data, and draw justifiable conclusions.
For our interviews we did have to make questions and do a little research about our topics. We had to take that knowledge and collect more data by interviewing a person who experienced our topic and use that to draw our conclusion.
e. Suggestions for improvement: What recommendations do you have? If your instructor uses this assignment in future FYS sections, what changes would you recommend?
I think the way it was done now was fine. The one thing that stressed me out was that on the app it gives us about 45 minutes of talking but I couldn’t find a time limit on the instructions, so I didn’t want it to be too short or too long.
f. Finally, talk to a future FYS student about this project: What would you like to tell them about this assignment? What tips and/or advice would you offer a future FYS student as s/he begins examining oral histories and prepares to conduct one?