The Evaluation and Validation of a Two Hour Interviewer Training Workshop

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Ernest B. Gurman

Advisor Department



There were three objectives in this study. The first objective was to examine the relationship between the interviewers' use of eight selected behaviors with the amount of desired information that the applicants disclosed. The most productive interviewer behaviors were nodding the head, using minimal encouragers (saying "un-huh", "right", etc.), and using Open-ended Questions. These behaviors were productive regardless of the topic (personal goals or interpersonal relations), and they significantly increased the rated depth of disclosure as well as the amount of information disclosed (as measured by the number of simple sentences produced). In addition, these skills effectively increased disclosure despite the large percentage of interviews in which the participants were of different races, sexes, or both. The second objective of the study was to determine which of the trained interviewer behaviors could be effectively taught by a two-hour, structured workshop. The trained interviewers increased their use of the behaviors of nodding the head (p < .02), using Tacting Response-leads (giving directions) (p < .06), and asking Open-ended Questions (p < .05) significantly more than the untrained interviewers in the control group. The third objective of the study was to determine whether the interviewer workshop had an impact on the amount and depth of information obtained from the job applicants. The results showed that the group that went through the workshop gained significantly more information than the control group in the topics which had to do with interpersonal relationships. The trained interviewers gained a significantly greater amount (p < .02) and depth (p < .005) of information on the applicants' interpersonal relationships.