Participant Observation

In: Other Topics

Submitted By lok702
Words 1032
Pages 5
Participant Observation

At this stage, we choose one of the field word methods which is the Participant
Observation and focus on examining it. We will explain what Participant Observation is about. For example, where does it originated from, what is the aim of applying this field work method, the roles of the researcher using Participant Observation as their field work method, the ways to conduct Participant Observation, the difficulties or concerns while applying this field work method may encounter and other information related. First of all, Participant Observation is the most common field work method that applied by researchers. It is also the most effective and efficient way to get all the information that the researchers want. By the term Participant Observation, it means that the researcher needs to immerse himself or herself in a new culture. He or she participates in people’s daily lives, speaks their language, observes their behavior and customs then records what he or she sees and hears. Though observation, anthropologists can collect data for meaningful analysis. Participant Observation is the field work that anthropologists conduct in their research sites. Most anthropological field work takes a year or more although applied anthropologists usually conduct their field work within a couple of months or less. Participant Observation is the field work that anthropologists conduct in their research sites. It is the most important strategy to collect data in the field by cultural anthropologists. It is an effective way to undertake a holistic study of cultural since it is the direct method to collect data and information at the first place. It also provides a broad-brushed picture of a society while focus on a narrower issue, which means it focuses on a single topic with plenty of background information. It might require total immersion in…...

Similar Documents

Observation

...Bsma Tolfree Unit 1 Individual Project Scientific Method May 1, 2011 OBSERVATION: During the winter, you spread salt daily on your driveway to melt the snow. In the springtime, when the lawn begins to grow, you notice that there is no grass growing for about three inches from the driveway. Furthermore, the grass seems to be growing more slowly up to about one foot from the driveway. QUESTION: I wonder if the grass growth is inhibited by salt? INTRODUCTION: Salt is a chemical compound (NaCl), or Sodium Chloride. Sodium Chloride has many uses in everyday life, such as in our bodies, in our food, and on our road ways. Having two elements, Sodium and Chloride, each have a number of jobs to do in our bodies. Salt is found in many of our foods naturally, from fish to vegetables, as well as being used for cooking and at the table. Also salt is used all over the world when it snows to prevent slip and falls and car accidents by it being sprinkled on sidewalks and road ways to melt the ice. When salt hits water or ice it lowers the freezing point in an effect known as freezing point depression and melting it in the process. According to (greenergreengrass.com) salt can also affect the pH of soil and can create an unsuitable environment for grass and plants to grow. HYPOTHESIS: The grass that gets exposed to more salt will not grow as much as the grass that gets exposed to little or no salt. PREDICTION: If the grass is exposed to salt then it will not grow as fast......

Words: 676 - Pages: 3

Using Material from Item a and Elsewhere, Assess the Strengths and Limitations of Participant Observation for the Study of Gender Relations in Schools.

...subject choice. These include primary socialisation in the home peer group pressure, subject images and gender career opportunities. Question: Using material from Item A and elsewhere, assess the strengths and limitations of participant observation for the study of gender relations in schools. There are two types of observation, covert and overt. The difference between them is that covert observation is when the people being observed do not know they’re being watched or studied, and overt observation is when they have been told and given consent to be observed by the researcher. Observation can also be done in two ways. This is called participant and non-participant observation. In participant observation the observer joins a group and observes their activities, while at the same time taking care to observe what is going on. Often that means writing notes and reflections later on.   In Non Participant observation, the sociologist simply observes the activities, but doesn’t take part in them. For example OFSTED; he or she is watching the lesson you are in, but they aren’t teaching, and they aren’t acting as a student. Everyone knows why they are there and often wish they weren’t observing them. A strength of participant observation is validity. It gives us an authentic understanding of the world views of social actors. This understanding is particularly important when researching issues such as classroom interaction and gender relations in schools. The power......

Words: 488 - Pages: 2

Observation

...Observation The student is considered a novice as an observer of children. The student observes children to gain practice and understanding in child development. Students have an obligation to protect children and respect school personnel. Observers are usually visitors in the classroom. The observer must keep in mind that they are a disruption to the regular processes in the classroom and they should respect the classroom teacher’s direction. The protection of the child’s rights in any type of child study is important. Regardless of the procedure used to collect information, the child’s protection is paramount. The child must not come to any harm (physical or mental) through participation in the observation process. Confidentiality must be utilized at all times. Talking about children and families with others outside of class or with the classroom teacher is prohibited. Please use fictitious names in written reports. Any concerns about a child’s safety should be addressed immediately with the classroom teacher or other responsible party. Observation tells us about children’s behavior – what they are doing. If we want to understand children’s development in school settings then we should observe them in those settings. Observation that takes place in a natural environment is referred to as naturalistic observation. Qualities of a Good Observer: · Recognize personal bias and preconceived assumptions about children. · Stay focus for a long......

Words: 506 - Pages: 3

Assess the Strengths and Limitations of Participant Observation for the Study of Labelling in Schools.

...attaches a person with a meaning or definition to them. For example, a teacher may use labelling to label students with titles such as bright or thick, trouble maker or hardworking. Participant observation is where a researcher takes part in the event or ordinary life of a group while observing it. There are two types of types of participant observation- covert and overt observation. Covert observation is when the study is carried out undercover, and the researcher’s real identity and purpose are kept a secret. Overt observation is the complete opposite where the researcher makes their true identity and purpose known to those being studied. The provided text looks into researching gender relations in school. Gender relations can cause many issues for the researcher, especially if the researcher is of a different gender. The item suggests that teachers working in the school may disguise their sexist attitudes because they have a professional duty to treat all pupils the same but they may find it hard to put up with this act when being observed over a long period of time. A strength of participant observation is that results are usually valid. Rather than getting a participant to fill out a questionnaire when there is no real way of telling if they are giving accurate answers, participant observation can however provide great amounts of qualitative data and the researcher can put his findings into great detail. By observing ethnic minorities and teacher/student......

Words: 334 - Pages: 2

Using Material from Item B and Elsewhere, Assess the Strengths and Limitations of Overt Participant Observation as a Means of Investigating Police Attitudes

...Using material from Item B and elsewhere, assess the strengths and limitations of overt participant observation as a means of investigating police attitudes Overt participation is usually a method of research carried out by those from a non-interactionist perspective, even though it is something that does focus on some interaction. When investigating police attitudes we mean attitudes of the police towards those who commit crime or are those causing deviant behaviour. As stated in Item B, we can see that statistically most police officers are white males, showing that this in itself could be something causing discrimination. However, this isn't something that is reflected on statistics relating to ethnicity and class, overall it would seem that most people that have been convicted are actually young, working class white males, so would not suggest that there is anything negative to say about police attitudes. Firstly, a practical strength of using participant observation in researching police attitudes is that it is easier to get in with the subjects the researcher is wanting to study. This also making it a strength, regarding ethics. In order for the researcher to get in, using overt participation they would have to reveal who they are to the police, therefore being honest and not carrying out their research without consent. However, a practical weakness, that could also affect validity is once the researcher is in with the subject e.g. the police force, in order to......

Words: 1075 - Pages: 5

Observation

...Every day, people all over the world travel to different places out side of his or her home. He or she will encounter many different types of people and different experiences. When this happens, the opportunity becomes available to observe his or her surroundings. I wanted to do the observation experiment at a place I find to be very interesting, it was a Tattoo Shop. This was a place that I felt was on the same standers as a mall and it was also a place that I visited and thought that it would be interesting to observe the people in my surroundings. At the tattoo shop, people of all walks of life come for different personal reasons. Some people came to get a tattoo because they lost a love one and wanted to honor his or her memory. Some came to get a tattoo because he or she loved the art, and some people were there just to support some one else. As I sat in my chair doing this observation, I listen to a young lady who came to the Shop with her friend. She stated that she was there to get a sleeve done on her arm. If you are unfamiliar with what a sleeve is, it is when a person gets a tattoo that goes from the shoulder area down to the wrist area of the arm. This young lady was there getting something that she felt meant something to her. She was getting a picture of a clock with the saying “Only Time Will Tell” drawn on her arm. As I listen to her talk with her friend I could see the sadness in her eyes as she tried to joke with her party. After she was serviced, the......

Words: 572 - Pages: 3

Observation

...Group Observation On Wednesday, September 25, I did an observation at Mastery Charter Smedley Elementary School. During my time there I would be observe a group of four students name Mike, Chris, Leslie and Tiffany. What I would be looking for throughout my observation is appearance, verbal behavior and interaction, physical behavior and gestures and who stand out the most. Mike – Observation Mike is an African-American, boy around the age of nine or ten dark brown skin with curly hair and black eyes short a little overweight. Mike blue tank top had yellow stains on it as for his pants they were fine. I noticed as I was observing Mike he wasn't really interacting with his group he wasn't participating in his group. His also yells out without being called on, doesn't use kind words to fellow classmates using inappropriate words for example Mike and the rest of the class was asked to get in groups at their table to work on an art project I overheard what Mike said to the boy that was next to him telling him to shut up and wait for the glue. After the teacher gives Mike a fair warning, I notice that he was changing his behavior but, first was told by his teacher that he had to apologize to Kevin. Chris – Observation Chris is a Latino, boy about the age of ten light skin with black hair and brown eyes and slim. As I was observing Chris I noticed his was well mannered and respectful to the other classmates at his group well as his teachers. Another thing I noticed......

Words: 683 - Pages: 3

Observation

...FIELDNOTES: A GUIDE FOR RESEARCHERS Fieldnotes: "The observations written by a researcher at a research site, during an interview, and throughout the data collection process" (FW, 501). I. REQUIREMENTS Much of the hard work of ethnography happens in the observations and fieldnotes. At times, you’ll feel as though it’s tedious to take fieldnotes; however, taking detailed notes gives you a set of data from which to look for patterns and ideas. In order to complete your field notes successfully, you will need to: General Requirements Spend at least one hour a week observing your community; While you’re observing, write substantial (3+ pages of observation weekly) field notes. Take time after you’ve observed to write meaningful, thoughtful questions and reflections on the “analysis” side of your double-entry field notes (explained in “Strategies” below). Date each entry, and number each page (This is vital! If you fail to date and number each page of your fieldnotes, you will be lost when it comes time to write up your research and prepare your Research Portfolio for the Celebration of Student Writing) Write legibly enough that someone else could read them. Keep them organized (in your Research Portfolio, among your artifacts and other fieldwork) Taking good fieldnotes requires that to divide the process into two phases: (1) notes you take while you are in the field (Observational/Descriptive fieldnotes) and (2) notes you take after you......

Words: 1218 - Pages: 5

Observation

...Observation  In this paper, I am to describe and discuss my observations of the  people at the mall. I was going to observe the people at the medical place I go to  with my Grandmother but I was not feeling well on Wednesday so my Aunt went  with her. I did not know what I had, if I was getting a cold or if it was just allergies.  Better safe than sorry. Since I did not go to the metical place I was going to  observe my neighborhood, there is usually quite a few people out but this time  there was not a lot so since  I was feeling better on Friday, my sister and I went to  the mall. We went to a store call JCPenney. This was Friday late afternoon. After  that I asked if we could grab a snack and sit and observe people for this paper.  Before  I go into the details of the observation, I want to talk about culture.   According to the texbook, it defines culture as “ideas and behaviors  that are learned and transmitted. Nongenetic means of adaptation  (Park,2014,pg12). With that being said, you can find all kinds of culture if you look  hard enough and closely. I have noticed that different races have different  cultures. But in my observation I did notices that one thing stayed the same. The  respect of the elderly. It is good to see that in every culture they teach the respect  of their elders. Also I noticed that this generation of younger children have to be ......

Words: 1523 - Pages: 7

Observation

...Day Care: Preschool: 4 yrs old, one 5yr old. I was placed to observe the Preschool 4 year olds during my clinical observation at the Daycare. Stages of Development: Eric Erikson: Initiative vs. Guilt. During this stage the child are focused on purpose, exploration and egocentric ideas and speech. During this period the preschooler experiences a desire to copy adults around them, take initiative in play situations, make up stories using barbies, toy phones, cars, playing roles like “Ninja” and “Pirate” They use imagination and fantasy during play and use parallel play. The also explore the world by asking “WHY” and “HOW” to understand new things.The preschoolers all become involved in the oedipal struggle. If they get frustrated over desires and goals they experience guilt. If they are unsuccessful at achieving a goal they become aggressive and may act is disapproving behavior. Piaget: Preoperational- Egocentric During this stage the child is selfish and believes they are the center of attention. They begin to feel that what they say is most important and all attention should be focused towards them. They often speak when others are speaking and get frustrated when they are not listened to. In the classroom, I observed many of these characteristics of the preschooler. Upon my arrival they all ran to me and all wanted me to themselves, offering their choice of play. They all agreed to give me “Breakfast” where I sat at a play kitchen table in their......

Words: 558 - Pages: 3

Using Material from Item D and Elsewhere Assess the Strengths and Limitation of Using Participant Observation as a Means of Investigating the Experience of Old Age. (15 Marks)

...With reference to item D, it is seen that the elderly are an increasingly large social group. Using participant observation means that the researcher can achieve a first-hand perspective on the elderly population’s experiences. Participant observation has many advantages. It indulges the researcher into achieving valid research and the participation means that in the meantime questions can be raised that were never initially considered beforehand. Another advantage is researchers can examine the experiences and issues that the elderly people face, as they play a part of their lives. On the other hand to produce qualitative research, the researcher would have to carry out participant observation in several care homes to analyse the treatment towards different social classes and obtain broader research on how gender and ethnicity may impact elderly experiences. However a disadvantage of this is that it would be extremely time consuming. With doing participant observation the characteristics of the researcher are also important. Characteristics as to whether the researcher is bias can dominate the findings, as a stereotypical view will remove validity, also the researcher’s age can impact the findings because of the views elderly people may hold, and for example they believe that young people are immature and disobedient. The case of the investigation is sensitive for many reasons; therefore the researcher would have to be capable of building a rapport with the individual.......

Words: 372 - Pages: 2

Advantages and Disadvantages of Participant Observation.

...Advantages and disadvantages of participant observation. One advantage of performing a participant covert observation is that participant behave as they normally would do so this would make the observation valid when looking at the truants activities. Also by making it to the group the researcher can get the viewpoints of the participants rather than his own ones. Another advantage is that it can dig into deep social interaction because the best way to truly understand what something is like is to experience it for ourselves. This closeness to peoples lived reality means that participant observation can give uniquely valid data. Another advantage is that the researcher can explore new insights because the questions that he may ask are not fixed so he may discover load of things about the truants just may being with them and doing their activities. But the are disadvantages of doing a participant covert observation and is that if the researcher studies small groups it may not be representative so if he is willing to get a more representative study he will need to be with other groups of truants but it will be very time consuming. Another disadvantage is that is cannot be repeated for reliability because the results will always change with different groups so the information that it needs to collect from one group need to be massive but it is very time consuming in relation to the amount of data that it can collect. Moreover if the researcher stays loads of time......

Words: 460 - Pages: 2

Observation

...Matttt robins Section 1: Observations I observed a child from Early Morning Learning Center at Gateway Community College. There, I observed my student Jerome for a total of five hours in 3 days. The Early Morning Learning Center at Gateway consisted of nineteen children ranging from ages 3 to 5 years old. The center had five adult workers whose job it was to watch and help the children. The days I observed the children were either in the classroom or on the playground. The student I chose to observe was an Africana American by the name of Jerome. As I arrived to the Early Morning Learning center the kids were out playing on around the playground. Jerome was riding one of the tricycles along with a couple other classmates. While riding away from other class mates Jerome yells “you can’t get me”. After Jerome places the tricycle down, a kid playing basketball asked Jerome to play saying “do you want to play”? Jerome begins playing with the other children. The children begin taking turns putting the ball in the basket. Before, placing the ball in the basket Jerome would jump. After a few times, Jerome took the ball to the wall and started getting a running start to put the ball in the basket. Then he began counting to three before taking his running start to put the ball in the basket. Jerome did this another four times. While playing basketball, the children were lining up back to back to see who’s the taller or tallest. When it came down to Jerome and another......

Words: 406 - Pages: 2

Sociology -Using Material from Item a and Elsewhere, Assess the Strengths and Limitations of Participant Observation for the Study of Labelling in Schools (20 Marks)

...There are two types of observation, covert and overt. The difference between them is that covert observation is when the people being observed do not know they’re being watched or studied, and overt observation is when they have been told and given consent to be observed by the researcher. Observation can also be done in two ways. This is called participant and non-participant observation. In participant observation the observer joins a group and observes their activities, while at the same time taking care to observe what is going on. Often that means writing notes and reflections later on. In Non Participant observation, the sociologist simply observes the activities, but doesn’t take part in them. For example OFSTED; he or she is watching the lesson you are in, but they aren’t teaching, and they aren’t acting as a student. Everyone knows why they are there and often wish they weren’t observing them. A strength of participant observation is validity. It gives us an authentic understanding of the world views of social actors. This understanding is particularly important when researching issues such as classroom interaction and labeling in schools. The power difference between young people and adults is a major barrier to uncovering the real attitudes and behavior of pupils. They may present a false image when being observed by an adult researcher, thus undermining validity. Nevertheless, observation is more likely than most methods to overcome this problem, because......

Words: 407 - Pages: 2

Assess the Usefulness of Participant Observation in Sociological Research

...Participant Observation is a method of data collection that takes advantage of the human ability to empathise. Unlike other research methods participant observation allows the sociologist to look at people in their natural environment. Participant observation is often associated with qualitative research, although the use of observation is not confined to researchers advocating any particular methodological approach. Sociologists such as Ned Polsky and Nigel Fielding have used participant observation to research different topics. This essay will explore the usefulness of the use of participant observation in sociological research, and its drawbacks. One of the most important decisions that participant observers have to make is how to approach the social group they wish to join. They can either choose to be a covert or an overt participant observer. A covert participant observer will declare their true identity and purpose whereas an overt participant observer will keep this hidden. Whilst some researchers choose to only be partially open, others strongly advocate being open from the start and argue that it is both morally and practically the best way to carry out participant observation. Ned Polsky suggests that it is morally correct to be truthful and that the research can easily be ruined if the covert participant observer is uncovered. However, leading overt research can sometimes have its drawbacks as the group may behave artificially so as to present themselves in a......

Words: 392 - Pages: 2