Instructor: Dr. Melanie Medeiros
Course Meeting Times: Mon. and Wed. 1:00-2:15pm in Bailey 201
Office hours: Mondays 2:30-3:45pm and
You may also email me to make an appointment 3 days in advance.
This course is designed to explore the current state of the art in anthropological methods. Data collected by participant observation, available in archives, recorded by direct observation or by interview schedules will be presented. Appropriate qualitative methods will be used to analyze and interpret these materials. Students will be required to actively engage in data collection, analysis and interpretation.
Required Reading [Complete the reading assignment before coming to class]
Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach, 2nd Edition. 2013. Jean Schensul and Margaret LeCompte. [do not purchase the 1st Edition].
Designing and Conducting Ethnographic Research: An Introduction. 2010. Margaret LeCompte and Jean Schensul.
Additional Reading assignments will be posted to this course's myCourses page under Course Materials.
The reading assignments are mandatory. You should be prepared to discuss these assignments in class and in their written assignments. The completion of all the reading assignments and participation in class discussion and activities are essential to your grade in this class.
Attendance and Participation
Your participation grade includes coming to class prepared to discuss the reading assignments, as well as preparation for and performance in-class activities such as small group discussions and workshops, presentations, etc.
Assignments. All assignments are due by 1pm on the day they are due. Detailed descriptions of all these assignments are available on this course's myCourses page.
1) Reading Quizzes (5 quizzes, 2 points each) 10 points
2) Student Discussion Leader (twice, 10 points each) 20 points
3) CITI training certificate (due 9/3) 5 points
4) Key Informant Interview Guide (due 9/29) 7 points
5) Research Design (due 10/1) 20 points
6) Participant Observation Notes & Essay (due 10/6) 10 points
7) Structured Interview Guide (due 10/13) 7 points
8) Key Informant Interview Essay (due 10/15) 10 points
9) Semi-structured Interview Guide (due 10/27) 7 points
10) Structured Interview Essay (due 10/29) 10 points
11) Focus Group Interview Guide (due 11/3) 7 points
12) Literature Review (due 11/5) 20 points
13) Life History Interview Guide (due 11/10) 7 points
14) Semi-structured Interview Essay (due 11/17) 10 points
15) Focus Group Results Essay (due 11/24) 10 points
16) Life History Interview Essay (due 12/1) 10 points
17) Community Map (due 12/8) 10 points
18) Research Presentation (due 12/3 or 12/8) 20 points
19) Annotated Bibliography (due 12/15) 15 points
20) Ethnography (due 12/15 at 3pm) 70 points
21) Attendance & Participation 15 points
TOTAL: 300 points
Extra Credit: 1 point
Attend a library plagiarism workshop by October 1st and receive 1 point of extra credit. Visit the library website for the schedule of workshops. https://www.geneseo.edu/library/library-workshops.
Standard Grade Curve:
Earning 282-300 points = A
Earning 270-281.99 points = A -
Earning 261-269.99 points = B+
Earning 249-260.99 points = B
Earning 240-248.99 points = B-
Earning 231-239.99 points = C+
Earning 219-230.99 points = C
Earning 210-218.99 points = C- (70-72.9%)
Earning 195-209.99 points = D (65-69.9%)
Earning 0-194.99 points = E (0-64.9%)
All written assignments and projects must be completed by the start of class (1 pm) on the date they are listed as due on the syllabus. Late written assignments and projects will be marked down one letter grade for each day (day = 5 minutes to 24 hours) late.
Plagiarism constitutes a violation of academic honesty and will be dealt with very strictly. Plagiarism is the representation of someone else’s words or ideas as one’s own, or the arrangement of someone else’s material(s) as one’s own. Such misrepresentation may be sufficient grounds for a student’s receiving a grade of E for the paper or presentation involved or may result in an E being assigned as the final grade for the course.
Any one of the following constitutes evidence of plagiarism:
1. direct quotation without identifying punctuation and citation of source;
2. paraphrase of expression or thought without proper attribution;
3. unacknowledged dependence upon a source in plan, organization, or argument.
You can read the college's academic dishonesty and plagiarism policy on-line at: http://www.geneseo.edu/dean_office/dishonesty.
SUNY Geneseo will make reasonable accommodations for persons with documented physical, emotional, or cognitive disabilities. Accommodations will be made for medical conditions related to pregnancy or parenting. Students should contact Dean Buggie-Hunt in the Office of Disability Services (firstname.lastname@example.org or 585-245-5112) and their faculty to discuss needed accommodations.
LAPTOP / TABLET / CELL PHONE POLICY
In this class, the use of computers, tablets, cell phones and other electronics is prohibited. This is to ensure that the students around you are not distracted by what is on your screen. Phones should not be out on students’ desks or laps. If a student is witnessed using their cell phone or it visible, they will be considered absent for that class.
Class 1) Monday, 8/25 Introduction to the Course & Research Projects
- In Class Film: “Doing Anthropology” [Stream here: http://ed.ted.com/on/gKlwiXUL]
Class 2) Wednesday, 8/27 Ethnography
- Read: LeCompte, M.D. & Schensul, J. 2010. Chapter 1 What is Ethnography? and Chapter 2 When, Where and By Whom Should Ethnography by Used. In Designing and Conducting Ethnographic Research: An Introduction. pp. 1-46.
Wolcott, Harry F. 1999. Ethnography as a Way of Looking (Chapter 3). Walnut Creek, Ca: AltaMira Press. pp. 41-65
Wolcott, Harry F. 1999. Ethnography as a Way of Seeing (Chapter 4). Walnut Creek, Ca: AltaMira Press. pp. 65-101.
Class 3) Monday, 9/1 NO CLASS: LABOR DAY
- Homework Due Wednesday 9/3: Complete the CITI "Social and Behavioral Responsible Conduct of Research" training at https://www.citiprogram.org. Directions for registering can be found in myCourses/Course Materials/Assignment Descriptions. The training takes several hours to complete. After completing the training, email the CITI certificate you receive to me by Wednesday at 1:00pm.
Class 4) Wednesday 9/3 Human Subjects Protection & Research Ethics
- Read: LeCompte, M.D. & Schensul, J. 2010. Chapter 10 Protection of Risk to Human Subjects and the Ethics of Ethnographic Research. In Designing and Conducting Ethnographic Research: An Introduction. pp. 285-318.
Barber, Gill. 2003. To Tell or Not to Tell? Ethics and Secrecy in Anthropology and Childbearing in Rural Malawi. In The Ethics of Anthropology: Debates and Dilemmas. P. Caplan, ed. pp. 133-153.
Love, Bridget. 2007. Fraught Field Sites: Studying Community Decline and Heritage Food Revival in Rural Japan. Critical Asian Studies 39(4): 541-557.
Scheper-Hughes, Nancy. 2004. Parts Unknown: Undercover Ethnography of the Organ-trafficking Underworld. Ethnography 5(1): 29-73.
Silverman, Marilyn. 2003. Everyday Ethics: A Personal Journey in Rural Ireland, 1980-2001. In The Ethics of Anthropology: Debates and Dilemmas. P. Caplan, ed. London: Routledge, pp. 115-128.
Bourgois, Phillipe. 2007. Confronting the Ethics of Ethnography: Lessons from Fieldwork in Central America. In Ethnographic Fieldwork: An Anthropological Reader. A. Robben & J Sluka, eds. pp. 288-297.
- Assignment: Email me the CITI report you receive from the "Social and Behavioral Responsible Conduct of Research" training by 1pm today.
1st Field site Visit Between 9/4 and 9/9: Volunteer and get to know your field site.
Class 5) Monday, 9/8 Ethnographic Fieldwork
Read: (1) Schensul and LeCompte. 2013. Chapter 1 Essential Data Collection. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. Rowan & Littlefield. Pp. 1-2; 8-21.
(2) Schensul and LeCompte. 2013. Chapter 2 Defining and Entering the Field. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. Rowan & Littlefield. Pp. 22-46.
(3) Schensul and LeCompte. 2013. Chapter 3 Recording and Organizing Data. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. Rowan & Littlefield. Pp. 47-77.
Emerson, Robert M., Fretz, Rachel, and Shaw, Linda. 1995. Writing Ethnographic Field notes. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, (Chapter 1) pp. 1-16.
Warren, Carol. 2001. Gender and Fieldwork Relations (Chapter 9). In Contemporary Field Research: Perspectives and Formulations, R. Emerson, ed. Prospect Heights, Illinois: Waveland Press. Pp. 203-222.
Agar, Michael. Beginning Fieldwork (Chapter 6). 1980. In The Professional Stranger: An Informal Guide to Ethnography. New York: Academic Press. Pp. 83-117.
Altork, Kate. 2007. Walking the Fire Line: The Erotic Dimension of the Fieldwork Experience. In Ethnographic Fieldwork: An Anthropological Reader. (A. Robben and J. Sluka, editors). Blackwell Publishing, pp. 92-107.
Kondo, Dorrine. 2001. How the Problem of “Crafting Selves” Emerged. In Contemporary Field Research: Perspectives and Formulations (Robert Emerson, editor). Prospect Heights, Illinois: Waveland Press, pp. 188-202.
Class 6) Wednesday, 9/10 Participant Observation
- Read: Schensul and LeCompte. 2013. Chapter 4 Participant Observation and Informal Interviewing in the Field. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. Rowan & Littlefield. Pp. 83-111.
Angrosino, Michael. 2007. Naturalistic Observation. Walnut Creek, Ca.: Left Coast Press. pp. 1-22.
DeWalt, Kathleen, Dewalt, Billie with Wayland, Coral. 1998. Participant Observation. In Handbook of Methods in Cultural Anthropology, H.R. Bernard, ed. Walnut Creek, Ca.: Altamira Press. pp. 259-291.
Emerson, Robert M., Fretz, Rachel, and Shaw, Linda. 1995. Writing Ethnographic Field notes. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, (Chapter 2).
DeWalt, K. & DeWalt, B. 2002. Informal interviewing in participant observation (Chapter 7). In Participant Observation: A Guide for Fieldworkers. CA: Altamira Press. pp. 120-139.
-Assignment: Be prepared to discuss your first visit to your field site.
2nd Field site Visit Between 9/11 and 9/16: Conduct Participant Observation
Class 7) Monday, 9/15 Research Design
- Read: (1) Schensul and LeCompte. 2013. Chapter 1. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. Rowan & Littlefield. Pp. 2-8.
(2) LeCompte & Schensul. 2010. Chapter 4 An Overview of Research Design. In Designing and Conducting Ethnographic Research: An Introduction. pp. 87-128.
Class 8) Wednesday, 9/17 Research Design Workshop
- Read: LeCompte & Schensul. 2010. Chapter 5 Choosing and Designing a Research Project. In Designing and Conducting Ethnographic Research: An Introduction. pp. 129-172.
Schensul and LeCompte. 2013. Chapter 10 Sampling Strategies. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. Rowan & Littlefield. Pp. 280-319.
- Assignment: (1) Be prepared to discuss your 2nd visit to your field site
(2) Bring the first draft of your research questions and objectives to class.
3rd Field site Visit Between 9/18 and 9/23: Continue Participant Observation during this visit and all visits
Class 9) Monday, 9/22 Conducting Key Informant Interviews
- Read: (1) Tremblay, M. 1957. The Key Informant Technique: A Nonethnographic Application. American Anthropologist 59(4): 688-698.
(2) Marshall, MN. 1996. The Key Informant Technique. Family Practice 13(1): 92-97.
(3) Manderson, Lenore, Bennett, Elizabeth, and Andajani-Sutjaho, Sari. 2006. The Social Dynamics of the Interview: Age, Class and Gender. Qualitative Health Research 16(10): 1317-1333.
Class 10) Wednesday, 9/24 Key Informant Interviews Workshop
- Assignment: Be prepared to discuss your 3rd visit to your field site
4th Field site Visit Between 9/25 and 9/30: PO & Schedule a Key Informant Interview for your next visit
Class 11) Monday, 9/29 Data Analysis
- Read: (1) LeCompte & Schensul. 2010. Chapter 7 Data Analysis: How Ethnographers Make Sense of Their Data. In Designing and Conducting Ethnographic Research: An Introduction. pp. 195-226.
(2) Bernard, H.R., and G. Ryan. 2010. Finding Themes (Chapter 3). In Analyzing Qualitative Data: Systematic Approaches. Los Angeles: Sage Publications. pp. 53-73.
-Assignment: Key Informant Interview Guide Due
McLellan, E. MacQueen, K., and J. Neidig. 2003. Beyond the Qualitative Interview:Data Preparation and Transcription. Field Methods 15: 63-81.
Markovic, M. 2006. Analyzing Qualitative Data: Health Care Experiences of Women with Gynecological Cancer. Field Methods 18: 413-427
Class 12) Wednesday, 10/1 Literature Reviews & Library Research
Meet in Milne Library Room 104
- Read: (1) Denney, A. and R. Tewksbury. 2013. How to Write a Literature Review. Journal of Criminal Justice Education 24(2): 218-234.
(2) Taylor and Procter. The Literature Review: A Few Tips on Conducting It. 1-2.
(3) Waterston, A. The Editor's Note: Marriage and Other Arrangements. 2013. Open Anthropology 1(1): 1-8.
(4) Cummings, N. M. Literature Review: Anthropological Perspectives on Contemporary Andean Healing Practices. 1-8.
(5) Knott, D. 2004. Writing An Annotated Bibliography. New College Writing Center. 1-2.
Nichter, M. 2010. Idioms of Distress Revisited.
- Assignment: Research Design: Problem Statement, Research Questions and Objectives Due
5th Field site Visit Between 10/2 and 10/7: PO & Conduct at least 1 Key Informant Interview
Class 13) Monday, 10/6 Structured Interviews
- Read: Schensul and LeCompte. 2013. Chapter 9 Structured Approaches to Ethnographic Data Collection: Surveys. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. Rowan & Littlefield. Pp. 241-279.
- Assignment: Participant Observation Notes & Essay Due
Class 14) Wednesday, 10/8 Structured Interview Workshop
- Assignment: Be prepared to discuss your 4th 5th visit to your field site
Holiday Weekend: Field Site Visit is Not Mandatory
Class 15) Monday, 10/13 NO CLASS
- Assignment: Structured Interview Guide Due via Email
Class 16) Wednesday, 10/15 Visual Research Methods/Visual Ethnography
- Read: (1) Keller, Colleen, Fleury, J., Perez A., Ainsworth, B. and L. Vaughn. 2008. Using Visual Methods to Uncover Context. Qualitative Health Research (18): 428-436.
(2) Wang, C. Morrel-Samuels, S., Hutchinson, P., Bell, L, and R. Pestronk. 2004. Flint Photo voice: Community Building among Youths, Adults and Policy makers. American Journal of Public Health 94(6): 911-913.
(3) Tanjasiri, S.P., R. Lew, D. Kuratani et al. Using Photovoice to assess and promote environmental approaches to tobacco control in AAPI Communities. Health Promotion and Practice 2011 (12): 654-664.
(4) Hannay et al. 2013. Combing Photovoice and Focus Groups: Engaging Latina Teens in Community Assessment. American Journal of Preventive Medicine 44(3S3): S215-S224.
- In-Class Film: “The Ax Fight.” 1975.
- Assignment: Key Informant Interview Results Essay Due
6th Field site Visit Between 10/16 and 10/21: PO & Conduct at least 5 Structured Interviews
Class 17) Monday, 10/20 Semi-structured Interviews
- Read: (1) Schensul and LeCompte. 2013. Chapter 7 Semi-Structured Interviews and Observations. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. London: AltaMira Press. pp. 171-194.
Class 18) Wednesday, 10/22 Semi-structured Interview Workshop
- Assignment: (1) Be prepared to discuss your 6th visit to your field site
7th Field site Visit Between 10/23 and 10/28: PO & Conduct at least 5 more Structured Interviews
Class 19) Monday, 10/27 Focus Groups
- Read: Schensul, Jean and LeCompte, M.D. Chapter 8 Focus Group Interviews. 2012. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. New York: AltaMira Press. Pp. 195-240.
Kitzinger, Jenny. 1994. The Methodology of Focus Groups: The Importance of Interaction Between Research Participants. Sociology of Health and Illness 16(1): 103-121.
Hollander, Jocelyn. 2004. The Social Contexts of Focus Groups. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography 33(5): 602-637.
- Assignment: Semi-structured Interview Guide Due
Class 20) Wednesday, 10/29 Focus Group Interview Guide Workshop
- Assignment: (1) Be prepared to discuss your 7th visit to your field site.
(2) Structured Interview Results Essay Due
8th Field site Visit Between 10/30 and 11/4: PO & Conduct at least 2 Semi-Structured Interviews ___________________________________________________________________________________
Class 21) Monday, 11/3 Life History Interviews
- Read: Schensul and LeCompte. 2013. Chapter 6 In-depth, Open-Ended Exploratory Interviewing. In Essential Ethnographic Methods: A Mixed Methods Approach. pp. 134-170.
- Assignment: Focus Group Interview Guide Due
Class 22) Wednesday, 11/5 Life History Interview Workshop
- Read: (1) Yarris, Kristin. 2011. The Pain of “Thinking Too Much”: Dolor de Cerebro and the Embodiment of Social Hardship among Nicaraguan Women. Ethos 39(2): 226-246.
(2) Seligmann, Linda J. 2009. Maternal Politics and Religious Fervor: Exchanges between an Andean Market Woman and an Ethnographer. Ethos 37(3): 334-355.
-Assignment: (1) Be prepared to discuss your 8th visit to your field site
(2) Literature Review Due
9th Field site Visit Between 11/6 & 11/11. Conduct at least 2 more Semi-structured Interviews
Class 23) Monday, 11/10 Writing Ethnography: Thick Description
- Read: Geertz, C. 1973. Thick Description: Toward an Interpretive Theory of Culture. In The Interpretation of Culture. pp. 3-30
Marcus, G. and D. Cushman. 1982. Ethnographies As Texts. Annual Review of Anthropology 11: 25-66.
Tierney, W.G. 2002. Get Real. Qualitative Studies in Education 15(4): 385-398.
-Assignment: Life History Interview Guide Due
Class 24) Wednesday, 11/12 Writing Ethnography
- Read: Holmes, Seth. 2013. Introduction to Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies. Pp. 1-29.
- Assignment: Be prepared to discuss your 9th visit to your field site
10th Field site Visit Between 11/12 and 11/18. Conduct at least 1 Life History Interviews
Class 25) Monday, 11/17 Community Participatory Research
- Read: (1) Minkler, Meredith. 2004. Ethical Challenges For the “Outside” Researcher in Community-based Participatory Research. Health Education and Behavior 31: 684-695.
(2) Schensul, S., LoBianco, L., C. Lombardo. 2004. Youth Participatory Action Research in Public Schools: Opportunities and Challenges in an Inner City High School. Practicing Anthropology 26(2): 10-14.
Hingle, M., M. Nichter, M. Medeiros, S. Grace. 2013. Texting for Health. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior 45 (1).
Wallerstein, N. and Duran, B. 2006. Using Community-based Participatory Research to Address Health Disparities. Health Promotion Practice. 7(3): 312-321.
- Assignment: Semi-structured Interview Results Essay Due [Use thick description]
Class 26) Wednesday, 11/19 Community Mapping
- Read: (1) Maman et al. 2009. Using Participatory Mapping to Inform a Community- randomized trial of HIV counseling and testing. Field Methods 21(4): 368-385.
(2) Perin, Jodi. 2007. Participatory Community Mapping in a Family Literacy Program. Practicing Anthropology 39(4): 19-23.
(3) Smith, D.A. 2003. Participatory Mapping of Community Lands and Hunting Yields Among the Bugle of Western Panama. Human Organization 62(4): 332-343.
(4) Nichter, M. Forward. 2007. Participatory GIS. Practicing Anthropology 29(4): 2-3.
- Assignment: Be prepared to discuss your 10th visit to your field site
11th Field site Visit Between 11/20 and 12/2. Conduct at least 1 more Life History Interview & Create a Community Map
Class 27) Monday, 11/24 Ethnography and Virtual Worlds
- Read: (1) Postill, John and Sarah Pink. Social media ethnography: the digital researcher in a messy web. Media International Australia, No, 145, November 2012.
(2) Boyd, danah. Why youth ‘heart’ social networking sites: the role of networked publics in teenage social life. In Youth, identity and digital media (Edited by D. Buckingham), MIT Press, 2008.
(3) Mallan, K., Ashford, B. and P. Singh. Navigating iScapes: Australian youth constructing identities and social relations in a network society. Anthropology and Education Quarterly, 41, 3: 264-279.
(4) Boellstorff, Tom, Bonnie Nardi, Celia Pearce, and T.L. Taylor. Ethnography and Virtual Worlds: A Handbook of Methods. Princeton University Press, 2012. Chapters 4 & 5.
- Assignment: Focus Group Results Essay Due [Use thick description]
Class 28) Wednesday, 11/26 NO CLASS
Holiday Weekend: Field Site Visit is Not Mandatory
Class 29) Monday, 12/1 Applying Ethnography
- Read: LeCompte, M.D. & Schensul, J. 2010. Chapter 9 Applying Ethnography. In Designing and Conducting Ethnographic Research: An Introduction. pp. 251-282.
-Assignment: Life History Interview Results Essay Due [Use thick description]
Class 30) Wednesday, 12/3 Research Presentations
-Assignment: Be prepared to discuss your 11th visit to your field site
Class 31) Monday, 12/8 Research Presentations
-Assignment: (1) Be prepared to discuss your 12th and final visit to your field site
(2) Community Map Due
Ethnography & Annotated Bibliography Are Due on Monday, December 15th at 3:00 pm
NOTE: This syllabus is subject to change. Reading and written assignments may be removed or added when the instructor believes it necessary for the course.