After the summary, provide more information by continuing to ask questions. In doing so, use open-ended questions as much as possible. Open-ended questions are questions that can’t be answered with yes or no.

Why are open-ended questions important?

▪ They lead to detailed, comprehensive and explanatory answers.
▪ They provide the most information.

Continued questioning based on open-ended questions: how do you apply it?

When asking open-ended questions, use the 5W1H model. This model is widely used in journalism (in writing press releases, for example), but is also used for research or even police interviews. The model is sometimes called the Kipling model, after the famous English writer Rudyard Kipling (The Jungle Book) who came up with a set of questions designed to generate new ideas and solve problems. To remember the questions, he inserted them into a poem:

‘I keep six honest men 

They taught me all I knew 

I call them What and Where and When and How and Why and Who…’

(Rudyard Kipling, 1865 – 1936)

The letters of the 5W1H model stand for the following:

▪ W: Who
▪ W: What
▪ W: Where
▪ W: When
▪ W: Why
▪ H: How

If your question begins with who, what, where, when, why or how, then you are definitely asking an open-ended question.


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