FST/SUS 511 - Research: Theory, Methods, Application
In this section, we pursue research using ethnographic methods (i.e., interviews and participant
observation, focus groups). Students will collect data and analyze it. The findings will be
prepared for a written report and a presentation to the public. The project will be pursued using
a community-based research approach. This means that the students’ training in ethnographic
methods will be done in a “real-world” context working with a partner on the ground. Students
will co-develop a research design in conversation with a community partner (the basic direction
will be decided before the course begins by the instructor and the partner; details will be worked
out by the students in conversation with the partner).
Part 1 (50 points)
For all students (in each section)
- discussion/guided responses (3 sessions)
be sure to have your response in on time,
and read at least five comments before class
and respond to at least one
30 pts
- active participation in class and with professors
Part 2 (150 points)
Section 1: Ethnographic Methods
- active participation in class and in group work
- practice semi-structured interview and reflection
- practice participant observation and reflection
- practice focus group and reflection
- team project
research design and proposal
data collection (each student’s work graded individual) -30
- interviews
- participant observations
Interpretation and analysis of findings
presentation of findings
20 pts
14 pts
12 pts
12 pts
12 pts
100 pts
Feb 13: On Designing an Ethnographic Research Project
What are ethnographic methods and why are they valuable?
What is Ethnography?
J. Murchison. 2010. Chapters 1&2. In Ethnography Essentials: Designing, Conducting, and
Presenting your Research.
J. Deutsch. 2004. Eat Me Up: Spoken Voice and Food Voice in an Urban Firehouse. Food,
Culture, and Society 7(1): 28-36.
Feb 14: Practicum: Preparing Research Proposal & IRB
M. Patton. 1990/2001. Designing Qualitative Studies. In Qualitative Research and
Evaluation Methods.
S. Silbey, 2003. “Designing Qualitative Research Projects.” Memo prepared for the
Workshop on the Evaluation of Qualitative Research, National Science Foundation, July.
Feb 21: Interviews
Chapters from Ethnography Essentials and Focus Group Methodology
K. O’Reilly. 2006. Interviews: asking questions of individuals and groups, and Practical
Issues in Interviewing.
J. Hermanowicz. 2002. The Great Interview: 25 Strategies for Studying People in Bed.
Qualitative Sociology 25(4): 479-499.
Video – Getting People to Talk!
In class
Ethnographic Methods: Interviewing Practicum
Bring a *special* dish to class
Each student will pair with another student and conduct an interview about a dish. We will
then discuss the interviews as a group, assessing not only what we learned about the
dishes, but what we learned about interviewing.
Feb 28: Participant Observation
J. Murchison. 2010. Participant-Observation. In Ethnography Essentials.
Mar 7: Focus Groups
Chapters from Ethnography Essentials.
Mar 14: Spring break
Mar 21: Data Collection & Analysis
Mar 28: Data Collection & Analysis
Apr 4: Data Analysis & Writing
K. Charmaz, 2001 (1995). “Grounded Theory.” Pp. 335-352 in Contemporary Field
Chapters from Ethnography Essentials.
Apr 11: Writing