Using paired depth interviews to collect qualitative data

Angie D. Wilson, Anthony J. Onwuegbuzie, La Shondra P. Manning

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

73 Citations (Scopus)


In this manuscript, the authors discuss using paired depth interviews as a method of collecting qualitative data. Paired depth interviewing—also known as paired interviewing—is defined as one researcher interviewing two people together (Houssart & Evens, 2011) for the purposes of collecting information about how the pair perceives the same event or phenomenon (Arksey, 1996). Although this form of interviewing has much potential as a data collection tool, it has received scant attention in the qualitative research literature. Thus, the purpose of this article is to provide a framework for using paired depth interviews as a method of collecting qualitative data. In this manuscript, we define and describe paired depth interviews, discuss conceptualizations of paired depth interviews using Roulston’s (2010) framework, delineate the strengths and limitations of paired depth interviews, and provide examples of paired depth interviews utilized in helping professions. Furthermore, we present a case study of original work that illustrates the utility of paired depth interviews and provide suggestions for future directions for paired depth interviews.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1
Pages (from-to)1549-1573
Number of pages25
JournalQualitative Report
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Data collection
  • Debriefing interviews
  • Interviews
  • Joint interviews
  • Paired depth interviews
  • Paired interviews
  • Qualitative research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Education


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