March 3, 2014
Roles for ethnographers
1. Complete participant (covert)
Participants don’t know what you’re doing and you fully participate in the “group” ex:
black like me
2. Participant-as-observer (overt)
Participants know what you’re doing and you are participating in the “group”. Ex:
observing a book club meeting and participating in the meeting – read the book and
3. Observer-as-participant (overt)
Observing a book club meeting but no participation. You don’t read the book.
4. Complete observer (covert)
Participants don’t know what you are doing and you have no interaction with them.
Observing through a one-way glass.
• What pieces do you have?
• What do they tell you?
o Should see patterns, themes etc.
• Do you have enough pieces?
• Are you moving too fast?
• Are you too descriptive?
• Structure your next session in the environment
• Putting the pieces of the puzzle together • Read over all of your field notes till com