LeCompte, Margaret D. and Jean Schensul. 1999. Designing and Conducting Ethnographic Research. Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira Press.
Purpose: Record situations as they occur and the meanings of the events as they occur to study participants
Targets: Activities, events, sequences, settings, structures, group and individual behaviors, conversations and interactions
Procedures: Written or taped fieldnotes, informal interviews and conversations, videos, photographs, maps, observational checklists
Data Content: Physical settings, actions, activities, interaction patterns, meanings, beliefs, and emotions
(2) Ethnographic Interviews
Purpose: Elicit in-depth information on specific topics, personal histories, cultural beliefs and knowledge, descriptions of practices
Target: Representation of individuals, key informants and/or topic experts
Procedures: Unstructured/semistructured/elicitation techniques by interview
Content: Answers to open-ended questions, responses to elicitations
(3) Content Analysis (of secondary text or visual data)
Purpose: Themes or content of meaning in a written/visual media
Target: Documents, artifacts, art products, transcripts, photos, videos
Procedures: Repeated observation, development of analytic categories, coding, enumeration
Content: Coded or sorted media
(4) Focus Group Interviews
Purpose: Obtain information about norms, behaviors, attitudes, cultural domains, innovations, instrument content
Target: Groups familiar with or belonging to group under study
Procedures: Interviewer-led group discussion, group elicitation techniques
Content: Transcripts of conversations guided by the interviewer’s questions and text-coded
(5) Elicitation Methods
Purpose: Obtain data on the ways people categorize and organize understanding of cultural domains using stimuli
Target: Individuals, small and representative samples from target groups
Procedures: Interviewer requests individual responses to elicitation tools (pictures, maps, lists, material items)
Content: Lists, sorted or categorized items, transcripts of discussions
(6) Audiovisual Methods
Purpose: Obtain accurate audio-visual records of events, interviews, and program activities
Target: Key informants, gruops with expertise in research topic, small groups, special events
Procedures: Targeted recorded events, or components of events selected in advance
Content: Coded transcrips of audio and visual elements
(7) Network Research
Purpose: Obtain data on patterns of relationships and exchanges among individuals, groups, and other social units; understand the diffusion of behavior and information through a network
Target: Representative, targeted, snowball, or systematic network sample of the target population
Procedures: Interviews with index (startpoint) individuals and members of their networks
Content: Quantified behavioral, attitudinal, or knowledge-based variables for individuals and theri contacts, pairs and larger groups; qualitative description of networks in space and time
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